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Core Promise: A Simple Driver of Healthy, Resilient, High-Performance

Core Promise: A Simple Driver of Healthy, Resilient, High-Performance

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With increasing competition for relevance to key audiences, and increasing pressure from relentless change as well as diminishing resources, the ability to design superior value with minimal investment – quickly – has become mission-critical for reliable performance.

These pages invite you to a new approach to organizational achievement: applying the power of new design thinking to Strategic Planning and Organizational Design.

With increasing competition for relevance to key audiences, and increasing pressure from relentless change as well as diminishing resources, the ability to design superior value with minimal investment – quickly – has become mission-critical for reliable performance.

These pages invite you to a new approach to organizational achievement: applying the power of new design thinking to Strategic Planning and Organizational Design.

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Core Promise: A Simple Driver of Healthy, Resilient, High-Performance

  1. 1. Core Promise™ A Simple Driver of Healthy, Resilient, High-Performance Be part of the solution for radically better use of organizational resources © The BestWork® People 2012
  2. 2. Design is an essential organizational discipline With increasing competition for relevance to key audiences, and increasing pressure from relentless change as well as diminishing resources, The ability to design superior value with minimal investment – quickly – has become mission-critical for reliable performance These pages invite you to a new approach to organizational achievement: applying the power of new design thinking to Strategic Planning and Organizational Design 2 © The BestWork® People 2012
  3. 3. START BY CONSIDERING EVERY PLAYER IN YOUR ECOSYSTEM A STAKEHOLDER © The BestWork® People 2012 3
  4. 4. Who assesses the value of your business? Customers Volunteers Municipalities Regulators Online Communities Referral Sources Investors Strategic Allies Suppliers Employees 4 © The BestWork® People 2012
  5. 5. Generating benefit for all of those Stakeholders is the game to be won Take a fresh look at your value exchange with each one  What do you promise?  What do they promise?  What’s explicit and what’s implied? 5 © The BestWork® People 2012
  6. 6. What do they count on you for ? What do you want them to count on you for? 6 © The BestWork® People 2012
  7. 7. What if – instead of multiple diffuse exchanges – you could focus your resources on one compelling promise to all of your Stakeholders? 7 © The BestWork® People 2012
  8. 8. And design your entire business around it 8 © The BestWork® People 2012
  9. 9. What is Core Promise? An enterprise is a network of commitments: nothing more, nothing less Commitments are social acts: promises among parties to deliver certain tangibles and intangibles Core Promise is a social contract – the heart of a resilient enterprise: Articulating who you are committed to, and how you will serve them Fueling a business model that powers strong Stakeholder relationships, and provides a solid foundation for planning 9 © The BestWork® People 2012
  10. 10. A Core Promise galvanizes Stakeholders The impact of a promise is innate: it’s a powerful social act. Because human beings have evolved through the advantage of cooperating, our brains are organized to keep us focused on the merits of potential interactions with others. A clear Core Promise fuels the social connection at the heart of every exchange, naturally energizing the organization 10 © The BestWork® People 2012
  11. 11. Examples of Core Promises (They’re proprietary; they can serve a division or an entire enterprise. Those below are intentionally obscured) We ensure that every Bank transaction is safe for all parties We serve communities with good merchandise at fair prices to both customers and suppliers, favorable work environments, and minimal environmental impact We provide personal, convenient, affordable, environmentally sound transportation We illuminate and assign the costs – financial and environmental – of every printed document We strengthen communities by growing women entrepreneurs, who in turn educate their children and expand the middle class 11 © The BestWork® People 2012
  12. 12. How is Core Promise different from Mission?  A mission is statement of intent, eg “To help people with disabilities find the opportunity to work” “To deliver the best mousetrap”  A Core Promise focuses commitment for value to all Stakeholders, eg “We provide affordable, skilled workers, strengthening the viability of families, communities, and enterprises” “We ensure that families, businesses, and institutions are safe from vermin” A Core Promise greatly improves both organizational cohesion and responsiveness to changes in Stakeholder concerns 12 © The BestWork® People 2012
  13. 13. How does Core Promise fit with Values, Vision and Purpose?  Core Promise is the embodiment of your organizational Values  It operationalizes your Purpose  And serves as a beacon when change appears to challenge your Vision For example, how would you serve your Stakeholders in the event of an epidemic or emergency? Your Vision might shift; your Core Promise would remain foundational. 13 © The BestWork® People 2012
  14. 14. Examples of results driven by Core Promise A major bank won regulators' approval, relieving limits to growth by acquisition Management teams in Fortune 100, midsize, small business, and non-profit boards stepped into alignment to drive growth and reduce costs Divisions of matrixed Fortune 500 moved beyond gridlock to develop profitable strategies and products, and exceed revenue goals year after year Resistant managers in Fortune 100 and small business embraced cultural change, driving new practices and developing new competences, widening the gap facing competitors Suppliers and distributors adopted new performance standards, boosting profitability all around © The BestWork® People 2012
  15. 15. IF CORE PROMISE IS SO POWERFUL, WHY ARE SO FEW EXECUTIVES EMPLOYING IT? © The BestWork® People 2012 15
  16. 16. Core Promise requires new abilities and practices  Stepping outside your own business and observing the ecosystem of which your Stakeholders are a part – systematically, repeatedly – and visible to your entire workforce  Identifying the culture and competencies that will enable your people to do their best work fulfilling the promise 16 © The BestWork® People 2012
  17. 17. No matter what your current priorities Change is not going to slow down; Stakeholders’ concerns will continue to shift Designing metrics, strategies, and actions from Core Promise drives focus, reduces ambiguity about what to let go, and builds trust As the world re-morphs, you can respond quickly to new requirements, while maintaining integrity and deepening important relationships 17 © The BestWork® People 2012
  18. 18. Amplify enterprise strength, resilience and integrity Operating from a clear Core Promise builds trust by clarifying what to rely on you for Designing metrics and strategies that drive performance against it streamlines resources and inspires best work, yielding competitive advantage A clear Core Promise gets you ready to boost your identity Though it may seem like a slow way to start, it will reduce the time required for planning by a factor of 5 – 10 18 © The BestWork® People 2012
  19. 19. Our enterprises beg for radical improvement in the way resources are deployed Organizations have a huge role in creating a world we can safely pass to our grandchildren. But people working long hours, multi-tasking, answering emails at 2 am, cannot do their best work, much less innovate. The brain does not generate new thinking when stressed If your people are working more than 42 hours a week, your model is part of the problem These pages offer a new way of leveraging design thinking to forge far more effective and efficient – thriving – enterprises I hope you’ll use them to become a bigger part of the solution. 19 © The BestWork® People 2012
  20. 20. HOW TO IMPLEMENT THE BENEFITS OF CORE PROMISE © The BestWork® People 2012 20
  21. 21. Implementation Steps One Identify your Stakeholders Two Articulate your Core Promise Three Define your Metrics Four Design your Strategies 21 © The BestWork® People 2012
  22. 22. STEP ONE: IDENTIFY YOUR STAKEHOLDERS © The BestWork® People 2012 22
  23. 23. Who are your Stakeholders? Customers Volunteers Municipalities Regulators Online Communities Referral Sources Strategic Allies Investors Suppliers Employees List all of them – those central to your business model and those more peripheral – and what you do for them 23 © The BestWork® People 2012
  24. 24. Consider mapping your Ecosystem Revealing which Stakeholders are central, how they all relate to each other, and how you add value 24 © The BestWork® People 2012
  25. 25. STEP TWO: ARTICULATE YOUR CORE PROMISE © The BestWork® People 2012 25
  26. 26. Ask a sample of Stakeholders what they rely on you for Listen Let them illuminate how you serve various parties Learn from their views and the language they use 26 © The BestWork® People 2012
  27. 27. Articulate what everyone can count on you for – no matter what Core Promise shifts organizational focus From “What we do” to “Who we serve”, naturally inspiring Stakeholders and generating their best work With Core Promise in place, you’re ready to begin planning and design 27 © The BestWork® People 2012
  28. 28. Core Promise provides a strong, resilient foundation for planning and design 28 © The BestWork® People 2012
  29. 29. STEP THREE: DEFINE YOUR METRICS Identify key performance indicators (Yes, do this before developing strategies) © The BestWork® People 2012 29
  30. 30. Re-define enterprise performance How are you performing against Core Promise in the four key Balanced Scorecard areas? 30 © The BestWork® People 2012
  31. 31. Note where value is generated and where it’s realized Financial Results Outcome Stakeholder Outcome Assessments Operations: Driver Internal Process Organizational Driver Capacity Source: Balanced Scorecard Institute 31 © The BestWork® People 2012
  32. 32. Establishing metrics in all four areas provides the benefit of both leading and lagging indicators Financial Results While every enterprise Two outcomes: lagging seeks the outcomes at the ‘top’, Stakeholder Experience Value is driven by Operations: Internal organizational Process capacity and Two drivers: leading operations at the ‘bottom’ Organizational Capacity 32 © The BestWork® People 2012
  33. 33. Examples of leading and lagging metrics Leading Lagging Operations Finance – Returns due to product flaws – Revenue from new strategic – Employees involving their partnerships families in Wellness programs – Net cost/savings from Green and Wellness initiatives Organization – Managers taking full Stakeholder Experience vacations, not checking email – Online communities actively – Employees generating desired tracking results of new brand experience within six products weeks of on-boarding – Website customer support required 33 © The BestWork® People 2012
  34. 34. STEP FOUR: INVENT STRATEGIES TO ACHIEVE TARGETED METRICS Remember where value is driven and where it’s realized © The BestWork® People 2012 34
  35. 35. Four questions for designing strategies 35 © The BestWork® People 2012
  36. 36. Ensure that each Strategy has a clear line of sight to Stakeholder value 36 © The BestWork® People 2012
  37. 37. Consider how your Core Promise can increase the value of Stakeholders to each other Core Promise serves as a context and a currency, driving consistency of experience Providing another view for getting critical relationships right And increasing the value of the entire ecosystem 37 © The BestWork® People 2012
  38. 38. STRATEGY MAPS CAN BE CRAFTED TO ADDRESS CURRENT THEMES & PRIORITIES © The BestWork® People 2012 38
  39. 39. This one was designed to foster corporate wellness 39 © The BestWork® People 2012
  40. 40. Dashboard for a young not-for-profit: ready for action Domain Metrics Strategies • Total revenue (in-kind • Track value of in-kind donations Finance included) • Operating reserves • How often are reports shared • Provide quarterly reports of each Stakeholder • Percentage of students who student’s progress Assessments become mentors • Provide video clips with permission to donors to share • Number of students who • Build partnerships with tech succeed in building community companies for collaborative and Operations jobs training software • Time required to recruit and • After piloting content and process, orient create electronic learning process • Focus Culture on value of every Organizational • Number of skilled volunteers exchange with Stakeholders Capacity • Number of students funded • Provide training to staff and volunteers re creating rich exchanges 40 © The BestWork® People 2012
  41. 41. Build a healthy, resilient, high performing enterprise Core Promise is a transparent social contract, building trust among Stakeholders It’s a context for putting people at their best: generating value and strengthening relationships It’s a call to action in your organization and your ecosystem I invite you to become a bigger part of the solution. 41 © The BestWork® People 2012
  42. 42. With gratitude for the thinkers, teachers, and researchers who illuminated the path Marsha Shenk is one of the pioneers of Business Anthropology. Her models have empowered business leaders for more than three decades. Synthesizing insights from Neuroscience, Linguistics, Somatics, and business, her work simplifies the complex cultural, biological, and historical forces that determine the success of modern enterprises. www.BestWork.biz http://twitter.com/marshashenk © The BestWork® People 2012 42

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