Maintaining the Balance: Clarity and Morale

January 12, 2013

This post is part of the Maintaining the Balance series. See my future post on Speed and Stability.

I’m a pretty simple person and I like simple pictures. I find sometimes a simple picture or illustration can communicate a point most effectively. I especially like 2×2 charts that deal with the tension or cooperation of two important organizational realities.

130123 2x2 300high Test Example thinner sidebar

Ideally, everyone in your organization would have a perfect understanding of the vision and mission, and plenty of drive to make it happen. But we all know this is usually not the case.

Leadership Dysfunction is evident when an organization has low morale and low clarity of vision. No one is excited about where things are going—no one even knows where things are going.

Undirected Progress is the result of a passionate team and a leadership that has failed to provide them with a mission. As time goes on, the momentum will die off as the team realizes they aren’t working toward any clear goals. This is a common problem with start-ups and overly familial team cultures.

An Uninspired Work Ethic is most often the case with established organizations. They have been around long enough to develop a routine. Everyone knows their place, but are they happy to be there? Are they fired up about where things are going? Often, the passion and excitement has been lost.

High-Quality, Engaged Performance is the sweet spot for an organization. Clearly defined goals and a motivated team to reach them. An effective and engaged team that gets the RIGHT work done in a timely and prioritized manner.

Where is your organization right now? Do they need better morale and motivation or a clearer understanding of the mission and vision? Or both?


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