StreetWise — Uncover The Roots

February 8, 2019

From our friends at Eure Consulting:

It’s often hard for leaders to determine the root cause of an issue. Problem diagnosis, at least accurate problem diagnosis, takes reflection and self-awareness, something a lot of small businesses don’t feel like they have the time to do. Companies caught up in the hustle and bustle of the day-to-day of operations tend to solve just the symptoms of the problem. More like applying a band aid than actually healing the wound.

In addition to not feeling that they have the time needed to solve problems, a lot of leaders aren’t getting the real information they need to identify the root causes. If a company has not actively created a culture of feedback where employees feel empowered to come forward with issues, then their leaders are not hearing the full story. Employees know the good, the bad and the ugly of the day-to-day, but whether or not they’re willing to share depends on their managers and leaders.

CEOs and leaders need to be open to hearing honest feedback about what’s working and what’s not. They need to create a safe environment where employees can have real conversations about the problems the company is facing and help to solve them. Management needs to embrace this feedback and use it to improve, not become defensive and angry.

One great way to better diagnose the real problems your company is facing is to send out quarterly, anonymous, organizational surveys. If you have never attempted something like this before, employees may be hesitant at first. They might give more conservative feedback, waiting to see how you’ll use the information. But, if you continue to send out the surveys and really take action on what’s written, you’ll start getting much more effective feedback, helping to point out the real trouble areas for your company. With today’s vast number of different technological options, like Survey Monkey, there are no barriers to asking for input. The real issue is being willing to hear what is said.

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