Finding our leadership framework.
I firmly believe that everyone needs a plan, particularly business leaders. And right now, with an ever changing landscape courtesy of Covid-19, it’s very challenging for leaders to formulate any kind of plan with certainty. Changing regulations, border closures, openings, restrictions – it’s hard to know how to plan when the goal posts keep moving.
However, what you can control, is leadership.
Setting a clear direction for your people. Putting some measures in place. Getting your management team on the same page in relation to strategy and recovery priorities. These are things within our control – these are the things we can plan for – the trick is to make it a priority.
Earlier this year, at the Big Red Group (BRG), we developed our leadership framework just weeks before the pandemic was announced. The purpose of the framework was to provide a leadership vision and consistent approach to managing our people across a growing organisation.
We as a leadership team considered this as part of our offsite in January 2020 – we asked ourselves the questions: What do we want to be known for? What kind of culture do we want to foster? How do we cultivate an environment that embraces inclusiveness and diversity? Who are we as socially responsible leaders? What’s important to us? All tough questions.
We established this framework to ensure our people, regardless of the role they play at BRG, have the right kind of experience and expectations in working for us.
At the time, we did not realise how important it would be. It captures the very essence of what BRG is about, and it has enabled us to consistently manage our people throughout a year of perpetual change. And when our team vacated the office and went remote in March, we had a framework to support them.
Having a clear vision and working towards it as an organisation is important at the best of times – and is critical in the ‘worst’ of times. Our BHAG (big hairy audacious goal) at BRG for instance, is to serve a sustainable experience every second somewhere on Earth by 2030.
I found that having a framework has given me (and our other people managers) a guidebook, when many times this year I have thought ‘this is too hard’. We gave up our office back in March, and one of the bigger questions we are asking ourselves is – when should we get a new office?
And the bigger question we are asking – what will the ‘new’ experience of work look like as we move into 2021?
Will remote working continue, or will it be a mixture of office and home? Should we create work ‘hubs’ in the suburbs? How do we unite people to the cause? How do we celebrate team, and nurture individuals? How can we achieve a better work life balance for our people, yet still progress and prosper as an organisation? There is a lot to consider.
We’ve set out to answer these questions, and developed a comprehensive white paper – The ‘New’ Experience of Work, so we can start to plan (there’s that word again), and shape a sustainable workplace for the future.
I share this with you now, in the hope that it may help you lead with intent as you plan your future state.
Also published on Medium.