As Albert Einstein, famously quoted: “Problems cannot be solved with the same mindset that created them.”
This is the first proven tenant of transformational change.
Overcoming the natural organizational antibodies to change, meaning changing existing mental models.
So do you want to change your mental models that aren’t working, or maintain the status quo? Do you want a red pill or a blue pill?
Create Mental Models That Align People with Purpose
Mental models represent a person’s assumption, or mindset, about how things work.
They are generally based on experiences, upbringing, and disposition.
They affect how we see things and what we do, and underlie all management tools and systems.
Leaders define reality through their mental models, and communicate accordingly with their associates to achieve understanding, alignment, and to solve problems. Ensuring that leaders have the right mental models, or mindset, then is critical to ensuring that the operational transformation process will be successful.
How can leaders make decisions that incorporate both vertical integration with the aim of the system, as well as ensure cross-functional alignment between departments? The prospect of this is dizzying.
Thankfully, there exists a solution to this problem: a “strategy deployment matrix.”
The Strategy Deployment Matrix
A matrix is a decision making tool used to ensure that priorities and responsibilities are paired in a cascading way. That means that each secondary objective is tied to the primary objective (the aim of the system), and each tertiary objective is tied to a secondary objective.
That way, with increasing levels of detail, specific actions are tied to objectives, and responsibility is given to departments, teams, and then individuals. It’s actually pretty ingenious.
Effective Strategy Deployment involves both vertical integration and cross-functional alignment, or horizontal integration. No role is left out of the process. From executives to frontline associates, everyone is involved.
Departmental silos, or the internal disputes between departments, are overcome in a way which opens up teamwork and trust among associates.
Departments that used to be pockets of knowledge and control, now become active participants in an enterprise-wide customer first, zero defect journey. The departments or units each have their specific performance measures for which they are responsible.
Kaizen, a core technique of Strategy Deployment, leverages this interactive process to provide continuous process improvement. Managers are taught to observe carefully to see the facts of a situation, and make maximum use of everyone’s brainpower to devise simple, ingenious solutions to problems.
So wake your team up with a strategy deployment matrix, and start planning your organization’s success!