Search “why visions fail.” Look at the lists. Then ask, “What’s missing?” Management-employee relations are. Now, don’t bite on the bait that visions solve that. They don’t. The interactions between managers and employees do. Period.
It’s like this. Take a car. It runs well but does not move. Wheels just spin. Tires don’t grip. Great visions and strategy are the car. Management-employee relations are the tires. Spend all the money on vision and strategy. No return comes with tires that don’t grip.
Problem Engaging Employees In The Vision
As early as 2004, engaging employees in the vision has been the top problem. So, run with this. Look at the solutions the search lists say. It’s all about clarity, walking the walk, miscommunication and more like these. Again, ask, “What’s missing?” Applying good relationship-building techniques is.
Yes, it sounds remedial. Go back to the car though. Working on the tires’ grip sounds far less exciting than working on supercharging the engine. Tire work does not even sound worthy of a mechanic.
It’s the same with applying relationship techniques. It does not sound worthy of executives to address. Vision and strategy gratify the ego far more. Now, at least with the car the mechanic does come down from the perch to look at the tires. How many execs do the same to look at management-employee relations?
Vendors Making Problem Worse
Vendors make this problem worse too. Great words sell far better than relational tips do. Selling to the ego’s search for status is easier and faster than selling to the mind’s search for solutions.
It’s simple they say. Communicating a better vision and strategy will do it. What they don’t say is that poor management-employee relations will undermine it all.
Of course, some will even say that this communication will improve these relations. That’s like saying rain will solve water problems without checking the plumbing. Rain won’t do any good if the plumbing does not work.
Management-Employee Relations Driving Visions and Strategies
In the end, management-employee relations drive visions and strategies. Even the most poorly worded vision can work if those relations are strong. It’s easy to change words. It’s hard to get relationships right.
So, if problems exist in engaging employees in the vision and strategy, check the relationships with employees. Those are the points where the car hits the road.