Integrating new collaborative management methods is always challenging. Managers and employees are caught up in their own routines, and new technologies are often intimidating.
We have seen dozens of organizations go through this change: not a one time survey, but a cultural shift towards inclusiveness. Here are five best practices we found for leading such a shift in your organization.
To acquire the needed buy-in, first make sure the entire management team is behind you. This should be done before you launch your first project. A short pitch, explaining the benefit, the platform and the potential - should be enough to start with.
Then, all you need to do is to introduce Insights’ platform to all who may benefit from it, and ask them what they would like to know that could help them do better in their departments. Once executives translate abstract concepts into actual questions that bother them - the technology is perceived as an asset and not as a burden or a gimmick.
Do you have a roundtable coming up, or a major gathering of staff? This is a great opportunity to have a real time, small scale demo. Pick a question that is relevant for everyone, send it out via emails and text messages, and ask the participants to login through their mobile phones.
Sending out a consulting question to all participants would enable them to share their thoughts, to engage one another, and to receive a personal feedback once the meeting is over. This way you earned both their input - and their interest.
Many organizations have used our platform to first consult with their employees. Before reaching out to external stakeholders, they focused on their inner staff, gathering knowledge which already exists in the organization. That’s not a demo, but a real question which taps into the internal wisdom.
Once the first public project is launched, the organization is already familiar with the website, and spreading the word is much more simple.
There is no other way to put it: the first question you’d ask would set the tone for all that would follow. Bring up a major topic for discussion, one that has clear implications for stakeholders - and state which outcome you wish to achieve. Avoid addressing matters that are too niche. Engagement will rise as participants feel their contribution is more valuable.
So you’ve had your first project - and even created a schedule for the next ones. Share the list with managers and employees! Once other executives see what others ask about, they are often inspired to create their own questions. Encourage mid-level managers to do so as well - innovative thinking can spark anywhere, and expand from there to the entire organization.
There are plenty of theories on how corporates change culture. It takes time and effort. In this article we’ve tried to transform the abstract theories into practical “to do” items. Let us know if you found any other method that works!
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