Your management team doesn’t agree with you
What kind of transformations are needed post-pandemic? When US executives and top managers were asked this question, the responses highlighted significant differences in perception that are a cause for concern.
Let’s see, how are things going with that project that was decided on by the executive board? The one you made your managers roll out – perhaps against their will? In fact, a recent survey found that upper managers are much less sensitive than their C-suite bosses to the impact of the health crisis (a 15 percent gap). They also feel there is less need to implement short-term changes (a 15 percent difference again).
Faced with this imbalance, you can’t produce a successful business transformation with just a better version of what you did in the past. Instead:
- Make sure you comprehend the mindset of managers and their teams. Everyone has to understand your new program, and seniority has nothing to do with commitment.
- Involve different levels of managers in the design and execution of your program for increased participation. This will make it easier for people to buy in to it.
- Forget the traditional top-down approach to your projects: Some groups of managers may have priorities that are different from those of the C-suite. Instead, adopt a customized approach for each level of manager to reflect that.
These differences in perception should signal an alert, since they may jeopardize your efforts to put the crisis behind you.
by Joseph Fuller and Bill Theofilou (Harvard Business Review, 4 March 2021).
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