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It is time to combine annual operating plans with behaviors. This concept is based on a premise that leadership behaviors create an organizational culture that impacts the top line and bottom line of the enterprise. Thus it can be said that Behaviors are ROI linked.
The steps involved in behavior-based operating plans are as under:
- Identify the behavioral patterns of your customer. The behavior of the customer and decision-makers can give you an insight into the client’s organizational behavior.
The distilled behavior of each client is more predictable than the “number forecast” through the trends. It will give you an insight into new horizons of business opportunities and the type of partnerships.
- Define the behavior your organization needs to show at each level. These become your behavioral anchors for the year to approach business opportunities.
- Once these behaviors are established, then the supportive ecosystem must be designed for creating a sound basis for behaviors to be demonstrated.
- Develop a feedback and feedforward system to keep the actions on track. It is important to create dashboards to ensure the deviations of behaviors are correctly measured.
- The role of the leadership then becomes like that of behavioral coaches. These coaches must be trained in developing and controlling behaviors precisely so as to ensure that the organization’s goals are achieved. This coaching is a combination of personal aspirations of team members and organization goals.
- Lastly reward behaviors and not results alone.
We have been testing this approach for some time now, and the findings are interesting. Organizations do not examine their behaviors, which are primarily the causation of business. They thus only rely on the environmental forces for accomplishing business success. This approach is flawed because here the environment becomes the trigger for organizations’ success and thus the organization is prone to business uncertainties and rendered powerless. In the behavioral approach, it is the organization that starts triggering the environmental responses proactively. Thus the organization operates from its internal power of behaviors.
We have seen customers tend to develop trust-based on the behaviors of the organization. It is ultimately the behavior that gets rewarded by the customer. So go ahead with Behavioral Annual Operating Plans. It’s worth it.