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Proactively Addressing Issues

by Jonathan Jones

I frequently encounter organization leaders who talk about the same business issues month in and month out.  Sometimes it’s a rogue worker; sometimes it’s incompetence, and sometimes it’s teams so ill-matched they are nonproductive and damaging. The entire organization suffers when these challenges are not resolved. Proactively address these challenges by committing to addressing ongoing matters in a methodical manner.    

Step 1: Create a space where multiple perspectives can be voiced. It could be a conference room, in the plant or office area where people work, or an off-site location.

Step 2: Hold regular meetings with all your teams, in various-sized groups. Weekly or biweekly meetings where issues can be identified and solutions sought will create a positive outlet and set a precedent for orderly, constructive discourse. When people know they have a forum for their concerns, they are much more motivated to work with you for change.

Step 3: Listen to what your teams and employees are saying about their workplace. A leader who makes decisions without hearing and respecting what his people are feeling not only is tone-deaf but also is missing opportunities to find solutions. Often the best answers to problems come from the very people actually doing the work. Invite these people to join committees; charge them with finding solutions and creating new policies.

Step 4: Seek peers outside your company who have experienced similar challenges but found ways to successfully deal with them and build productive, loyal work forces. External peers usually can provide an unbiased perspective with no agenda but to help each other.

Meeting with your people on a regular basis, listening to what they say, inviting their solutions and consulting with your peers should make for fewer serious problems and more satisfaction throughout your organization.

Jonathan Jones ( or 314-608-0783) is a CEO peer group chair/coach for Vistage International.

Submitted 8 years 118 days ago
Categories: categoryCulturecentric Leadership
Views: 2440