Envision an organization where there are no turf wars, with happy people supporting each other without questioning motives, departments working together seamlessly, and people taking initiative, looking for value-added activities and abandoning overhead activities. Sound like nirvana?
If we take the steps to create a “value creation” mentality in every area of the company, from the maintenance staff to the executive suite, this high-performance culture is possible.
There is no better foundation than one of value creation.
I’m answering the phone. What value can I create?
I’m scheduling a meeting. What value is expected in the meeting for every participant?
What activities do I perform that create negative value?
That’s what I mean by having a value creation mentality.
These are questions that each and every person in your organization should be asking each and every day.
These questions start with you, the leader. Are you asking people these questions? Are you taking a moment to explain the value creation intended in each activity to show the mindset?
The message: you are either valuable or you are overhead. If you are overhead you can’t work here.
This means value must be created throughout the entire organization from the receptionist to the system architect, to the sales person, to the accountant, to the VP of whatever.
Here are ways to think about value at every level:
- Productivity. How much quality output is produced? The Key Performance Indicators are different for each person but are a start to look at productivity. This isn’t hours worked but rather about quality results generated. For some it might be a binder of training materials. For others it might be innovative solutions created.
- Skill. How does the skill of each person contribute value? The level of developed skill determines the level of problem that can be handled. The higher the value of the problem solution the more valuable the skill level. The act of mastering a skill must be directly related to the value it will provide.
- Contribution. How much useful contribution is made to other people and organization processes like hiring, coaching, development, and leadership?
- Customer. How much does the work matter to our product and our customers? It’s easy to see how a product manager contributes value but what about the tester or documentation person, or the marketing person?
You can make it a focus to infuse a value creation mentality in your organization at every level. Start today!