How did a new CEO coming from outside the organization establish his leadership and bring his strategy to life?
When a CEO was hired from the outside to transform a large healthcare company in a time of profound industry change, it provided an opportunity to look fresh at strategy, leadership routines, communications cadence, and culture. He needed to establish a leadership brand that would personalize him, a messaging approach and cadence that would bring the company's strategy to life and - not to mention, facilitate a shift in the culture.
The solution was a long term strategic communications plan that established a highly effective set of interactive leadership meetings, messaging that connected people to the CEO's priorities and an action plan that consistently emphasized consumer-focus, empowerment, and accessibility.
The result was very high leadership awareness and buy-in to the company's strategy, a shift to an engaging communication style, and momentum towards a vision that made its employees and partners proud to be part of the company. Under the CEO's leadership, the company achieved world-class engagement results.
How did a company with new leadership and a changing strategy evolve its culture to ensure everyone was moving in the same direction at the same time?
Culture eats strategy for lunch, as the saying goes. So when this large corporation with new executive leadership shifted its strategy, it decided to take a close look at its culture. The company embarked on a journey to shift from an operations-focus to a consumer-focus, from command and control leadership to one of empowerment. It needed to align the company's associates around a common platform so they could act and speak with a common focus.
One part of the multi-faceted solution was the creation of a set of core values -- values that would honor the company's heritage while positioning it for the future. The process included input from associates in multiple locations and business units – as well as a thorough analysis to ensure they were well connected to the strategy. Five core values were established that were a unique and personalized reflection of the company’s mission and philosophy.
A senior-level governance team championed the introduction and incorporation of the values into the language, performance systems and ways of working. With the values and sponsorship in place, a communications strategy was launched beginning with the company's executives at its annual leadership forum.
Through a campaign that included video, signage, messaging and storytelling, associates became inspired to start their own campaigns in company locations around the country, driving very high awareness and positive sentiment toward the values. Over time, the values were incorporated into the performance management and recognition systems motivating behaviors that the company wanted to reinforce. The values have become a symbol for how the company has internally shaped its culture to support its strategy.
How did a communication strategy motivate an organization's employees to embrace its company's health initiative and adopt healthy behaviors?
Most of us know the right things to do to stay healthy, so why don’t we do them?
As this large well-being company set out to advocate its vision with consumers, it realized it needed to start inside its own walls and to help motivate its employees to embrace healthy behaviors. But the traditional health advice of eating less and exercising more often fails to motivate because it is boring and not very inspiring. The company knew it needed to find a fun way to engage and activate. The company launched the “100 Day Dash,” a spirited but friendly competition that got people off the couch and eager to begin a journey to better health and well-being.
The communication strategy was key. It had to do more than inform associates of the 100-day step challenge; it had to inspire people to enroll and adopt new behaviors for the 100 days and hopefully, for life.
The solution was a comprehensive strategy that leveraged key communications principles including a strong call to action, leadership participation and transparency, peer influence, behavioral economics framing, social media and competition.
The program was a resounding success and exceeded its initial enrollment and physical activity goals. Not only did the employees begin losing weight and feeling better physically, but many of them reported gains in their emotional and mental health because of new social connections made during the challenge. The communications strategy was recognized with a prestigious international communications award.
How did the leader of a start-up investment firm unify his team and transition the organization from exploring to operating mode?
After 12-18 months of exploring various business models, the vision and strategy were clear. Now the team needed to shift from determining its business plan to creating a go-forward operational playbook. The recommendation was made to convene the team for a conversation that would culminate in the development of a 12-month plan.
The first priority was for the team to work together to determine the company’s immediate and short-term focus. Based upon meetings with individual team members prior to a group dialogue, the goals for a working session were determined and an agenda established. The main needs identified were for a client acquisition plan and for the team to have clearer accountabilities.
It was the right conversation at the right time to move the company from exploration to activation. Within a few weeks of the meeting, a 12-month plan emerged – a targeted marketing approach and clear accountabilities for the team. Client prospects have increased significantly as the company and CEO have increased their visibility and fine-tuned their message.
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