I had just started as the fractional Integrator at a service company that wanted to improve its utilization of EOS™. They had all of the tools in place, but there was lots of room for improvement.
· Their Leadership Team L10™ meetings were nothing but loosely run staff meetings, with none of the benefits of a well-run L10.
· Their Core Values™ were not clear, and no effort had been made to communicate them to the employees.
· There were some personal Rocks™, but there were no corporate Rocks aimed at achieving their 1-Year Plan™.
· Their Accountability Chart™ and Scorecard™ were in place, but both needed clarification and refinement.
After our next Quarterly Meeting, the Team started the new quarter with improved clarity and an enhanced sense of purpose. The Leadership Team was working hard on their Rocks, and they were identifying and solving Issues every week.
We began to realize, though, that some of the Issues we were identifying were better addressed at the department levels. There was only so much that the Leadership Team could do to fix some of the Issues. We needed to delegate some of them to the departments to solve at their level.
Furthermore, we felt it was time to bring the benefits of EOS to the departments. They had problems at their levels, too. We needed to teach them how to use EOS to build a healthy and productive team and solve the problems that would move their department forward, just as the Leadership Team was moving the company forward.
So we started departmental L10s at the second layer of management. EOS was entirely new to these managers, so we started with L10 meetings. The teams grasped immediately what the L10 was all about. They had lots of Issues, mostly nagging daily problems that had been causing inefficiency and job dissatisfaction for months. We started knocking off those Issues, and the impact was immediate and dramatic as efficiency increased and morale improved.
We then created the next layer of the Accountability Chart by laying out the departments in detail. This made reporting relationships and accountabilities clear for everyone.
We also created departmental Scorecards. The teams began to look forward to their weekly Scorecard update so that they could see the results of their weekly efforts.
Finally, we created departmental Rocks that cascaded off the corporate Rocks, which got everyone focused on growing the business.
That was still not far enough, though, so we added a third level of L10s. We were now meeting with the managers who managed the staff who provided the services to the company’s clients. We followed the same steps as noted above (L10s, Accountability Chart, Scorecard and Rocks) and saw the same improvements in efficiency and morale.
What I liked about this level of L10s was the reaction of these managers. They were excited to have a process for bringing up Issues, and they were delighted to see that they actually had the authority to solve them! They were taking an active role in making their department better.
They also came to understand that our L10s were a safe place to bring up any issue that was bothering them. It took some time for them to gain that confidence, but eventually they felt comfortable enough to bring up sensitive issues like compensation and concerns about the nature of their jobs. As a result, their engagement and job satisfaction increased dramatically.
The dynamics of having three levels of L10s was a thing of beauty. Not only did the Leadership Team send Issues down to the departments, but the departments also identified Issues that they could not solve. So the departments elevated Issues to the Leadership Team to solve!
There was a healthy dynamic of raising Issues openly and honestly and then sending them to the right team to solve. We always made sure that no Issues got dropped. We especially made sure that the Leadership Team followed up quickly on any of the departments’ Issues so that everyone maintained their faith in the EOS process.
By taking EOS down three levels, we built healthy and productive teams and taught them to solve problems. As a result, they became more engaged and productive. They communicated better, learned to solve Issues, and felt empowered by their ability to make their jobs better. They were working ON the business and contributing to the growth of the company. That is what EOS is all about.
If an Integrator could make your teams healthier and more productive, reach out to me. I have been a fractional Integrator for five years and have worked with clients in a variety of industries. I have helped my clients reach their goals and build stronger teams. I can be reached at email@example.com or 651-247-1993 or my LinkedIn page.
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