By: Amanda Browne and Anthony C. Gruppo
The visionary is often the brightest light in the darkest time
The world of business is seeking creativity and innovation now more than ever. Colleagues are looking to their leaders for guidance and strategy from the confines of their homes. The traditional structures of business have given way to the creative conduits of leading colleagues from remote locations. We are writing this blog to unlock the potential to leading in this new environment by starting with a strategic partnership between the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and Chief Human Resource Officer (CHRO).
These two key leaders need to form a partnership forged in trust and open communication. The CEO should involve the CHRO in all the initial stages of strategic planning. The CHRO can provide critical advice and guidance in the following areas:
- Colleague’s perception of organisational initiatives.
- Assisting colleagues to become advocates to help deliver the strategy.
Direct communication prevents misdirected results
There are so many examples of key business decisions taken, which at first, sounded good when initially discussed around the top table. However, when implemented they land badly with colleagues. This can be the result of poor timing of the initiative, or perhaps, the wrong people delivered it. In an ideal world this would never happen because leadership is in constant contact with pulse of the organisation, however, this is not often the case. By being involved at the initial stages of an initiative, the HR voice can ensure the message and structure of new initiatives are kept simple, and the initiatives the top table are planning can be translated and delivered in a way to which will ensure they achieve maximum benefit.
Each member of an executive team brings to the table a unique set of specialised skills and they help the CEO to take an idea and develop it, sometime battering it into shape by using these skills. The lens they use to look at the situation improves the ultimate organisational outcomes. The CFO will challenge from a financial perspective, the COO, from an operational perspective, and the HR Director will address the impact on people. With the adaptability of all the people in these roles, the result can far surpass any individually developed idea.
The top table also knows that they alone cannot deliver the strategy, and HR can play a key role in helping the CEO identify the colleagues and make the connection on who will become the advocates to deliver and champion the strategy. This can be through structured and unstructured methods, formal settings such as talent reviews and succession planning. Just as critical is the informal conversations and connections that are shared about up and coming talent in the organisation, those people who have stepped up and delivered in times when the organisation has been challenged and getting the profile of these colleagues known.
Use your positional power less and empowerment more
The maximum potential of an organisation becomes a reality through the strategic partnership of the CEO and the CHRO.