Based on the answers you submitted in the survey, it’s likely your organization has some untapped potential. Companies who fall in this range typically have seen some growth and are generally healthy, but something is causing them to stall. Use the examples below as a guide to measure against what you’re experiencing on a regular basis in your organization.
CEO & Executive Team Leadership
Organizations with untapped potential typically require their CEOs to keep a closer eye on their leadership team than is ideal. This can lead to the CEO’s time being compromised when they are occasionally dragged into problems that really should be handled by the leadership team. Rather than spending their time on strategy and with clients, they may miss opportunities and find it hard to stay fully ahead of market shifts and encroaching competitors. At times, CEOs find themselves neglecting their physical health and key relationships because the role is too large and can’t be done within a reasonable work week. Instead of having a robust team who brings strategic input and carries the weight of implementation, the CEO of an org with untapped potential may find they are dealing with less-than-ideal levels of enthusiasm and levels of infighting. This inward, non-client focus means challenging goals and opportunities may be met with excuses, equivocations, and expressed doubts about others’ ability to meet or exceed the expectation. When the leadership team loses momentum and cohesion, that will inevitably filter throughout the organization and to clients if left unchecked. Leadership issues must be addressed immediately to protect and strengthen the organization as a whole.
Culture & Performance
One of the subtlest things to measure is culture, but it’s possible that certain warning signs are starting to show up in how the organization functions. Sometimes silos begin to form within the company or maybe employees start behaving in a more timid fashion. Micromanagement and “the blame game” might become the norm instead of giving employees the room to do their jobs well and learn from their mistakes. Consequently, team members may no longer be willing to communicate openly or honestly about problems, failing to passionately advocate for clients, and ultimately leaving issues to fester and grow. And while a certain amount of turnover is normal, natural, and healthy, if an organization is primarily churning its high performers and/or new hires, those are alarm bells to be heeded. You cannot provide an amazing customer experience with a team of entirely brand new employees, therefore, a level of stability and consistency in staffing is critical. If there are culture issues left unaddressed long-term, the organization will see a loss of its strong performers, a failure to attract and retain new talent, waning customer focus, and ultimately productivity and profitability hits. If addressed timely, however, these issues can be resolved, and the organization returned to health and productivity.
Next Steps – For Your Consideration
For organizations with “Untapped Potential,” it’s important to understand not only what is going wrong so you can address it but also what is going well so you can capitalize on it. Leaders sometimes make the mistake of focusing only on problems and failing to maximize the org’s wins.
- How would your team describe your style? What would THEY say is your biggest strength? Your most critical opportunity for improvement?
- Identify 2-3 departments that seem to have it all together—efficiency, morale, and service. What’s their secret? What are they doing that is reproducible across the org?
- What department is facing the greatest challenges? How do you ensure they are getting the support they need? What steps are you taking to guide that leader? What outside resources are you engaging for help and support?
Want to discuss your survey results in depth?
Reach out to me to schedule a free 30-minute discussion. I’d be glad to take a closer look at specifics within your organization that might be causing some slipping potential in your organization.
During our time, we’ll address your questions around:
- Organizational culture
- Leadership team dynamics
- CEO lifestyle and effectiveness
- Organizational performance
About me: My name is Kirk Lohmolder, and I’ve spent the better part of my career in executive leadership, guiding teams through business development, strategy, marketing and sales opportunities. Now I’m investing my days meeting with CEOs who need someone who can get a pulse on organizational dynamics and provide tangible, action-oriented insight. Learn more about me here on LinkedIn.