company initiatives that you shouldn't be scared ofPeople are sitting in board rooms all across the US today (perhaps clad in costume), realizing that they must change the way they are doing things.

They are declaring that it’s time to take a bold path, shake things up a bit, or simply identify their goals and tighten up their operation to ensure long term success in their industry.

Taking the first steps to achieve this may be scary for some and exhilarating for others.  Listed below are 5 of the "scariest" initiatives that organizations embark upon—sometimes, it is so scary to an organization that they're paralyzed by the thought of engaging in them, but they know they must if they are going to succeed.

We’re here to tell you that these are actually not-so-scary; certainly not if you approach them with the right attitude, preparation, goals and messaging.

1. Surveying your employees: 

If you want any chance of your initiatives working, you must get a read on what employees are perceiving about your organization and how engaged they are.  Oftentimes, simply asking your employees the right questions will reveal success and opportunities that you didn’t even know existed!  Having the courage to ask the questions is often rewarded with employees that are impressed that you asked and eager to help improve.

2. Sharing the survey results with your employees:

So many leaders have the courage to take the first step in surveying their employees, yet drop the ball when they simply hoard the results for their own use, or file them away and never touch them again.  The best thing that you can do after a survey is share the results with your employees.  After all, they took the time to share their thoughts with you.  Sharing the results—and committing to use them for positive changes—will go a long way in building trust with your team and is not-so-scary!

3. 360 reviews:

Leaders are often scared to ask for feedback, fearing that it will be negative.  360 reviews are a great opportunity to understand how your work style is affecting others.  Are you motivating, respected and trusted? Or have you created an environment where people are fearful, intimidated or feel micromanaged? Knowing is certainly better than not knowing, and acting on this feedback is paramount to developing as a leader.  The difference between fear and courage is your attitude!

4. Onboarding training:

In order for everyone in your organization to "row in the same direction", it is necessary to chart the path and the direction.  Then, that message must be shared with existing employees and again with new-hires as they enter your organization.  For many, it seems so overwhelming a project to undertake.  But the process of identifying the goal and path is actually cathartic and unifying for most organizations, and many exclaim, "We should have done this sooner!"

5. Mystery shopping and customer feedback:

How do you know that you are delivering a great customer experience?  Just ask. Soliciting feedback from customers, patrons, members, etc. can be daunting. "What will we do with the results? What if someone is upset about something we can’t control? I don’t want to get feedback because I will take it personally!"  All of these thoughts are normal, yet the benefits of the feedback far outweigh the fear and vulnerability that some may feel when they embark on a customer feedback journey.

Knowledge is power…and empowering for both you and your employees. Overcoming the fear of asking and knowing is easier when you have a plan, and an open and inquisitive mind.  Using the information for improvement, and sharing it with your teams goes a long way in shaping a culture of open and honest communication, trust, and continual improvement!  Not-so-scary after all!
Contact CSE today to learn how we can help take the "scary" out of the processes above.