Sharing Best Practises Across The Business
Ditching the Tick-box Exercise
So a little definition here Best Practice being the ‘commercial or professional procedures that are accepted or prescribed as being correct or most effective‘ and so sometimes linking to compliance activities. I realised during the webinar you can watch below that Best Practice in the way I demonstrate how good ideas, which could be Best Practice, can be lifted and shifted from one part of the same business to another. More akin to the Wikipedia definition of: ‘.. a method or technique that has been generally accepted as superior to any alternatives because it produces results that are superior to those achieved by other means or because it has become a standard way of doing things‘. So what we didn’t demonstrate is proving them as industry-wide best practice and that’s something to look at another time. I’ve made a note to self!
So how do we spot, capture and apply this kind of best practice, doing things well, across the business? Firstly how do we not?! Well what I don’t see working so well is best practice via Lessons Learned which I’ve seen as a PRINCE2 project close out product. In line with the research I did for the session there’s very much a template and process based backdrop to most of the references I found. This is at odds with the Big Picture approach I’ve seen work really well where it’s the conversation at the centre conducted in a way you can reap the rewards from taken the value from it in terms of collaboration and so shared workings. Let’s leave the tick-box exercise aside and spend our time exploring a practical level.
Spotting, Capturing and Applying
Best Practice, examples of, can prove elusive as often it’s the operational and results side of the business attracting most of the attention. Continual improvement, change functions and astute managers are a few examples of areas of the business that may from time to time stop to consider ‘what exactly is it we’re doing well?’. Rather than leaving it to chance we find a specific and focused activity to shine a light in the right areas. Individuals and teams require the right mindset and environment to give themselves time to consider away from the day job. Simply we ask a couple of questions:
What do we do well? .. as potential areas of Best Practice
We’ll work away to qualify these as often it’s difficult for the team to do that if they’re so close to it. Some form of objective qualification of the ‘good at’ list helps ensure we’re seeking to lift and drop the right kind of things.
What could we be better at? .. as potential areas to bring in Best Practice
This will come later when we’ve talked to the rest of the team about what they are good at and what can be brought it to help here. This is best done as trust is built up between the teams to ensure any proposed incoming changes lands in a good place.
“A useful reminder how the tool works, how flexible and adaptable it is. We’ve always believed it’s a powerful tool” – Anne, May 2019
Once qualified then, this is where we deviate from the more frequently used written template, we go for a structured conversation around a ‘codified’ representation of it’s make-up. This is typically involving a Team, Process and maybe a Technology with the all important Measure to determine what good looks like. A written definition can sit behind we like to encourage a ‘if x then y and z and so ..’ pattern that is easily recalled and fits the standard form.
It’s now a similar approach with different teams to add to the Best Practice catalog where good work is more readily understood via discussion with a ready-made target to land it back in the business- or at least initially the Big Picture representation of it. With everyone using the same language and references the jump is no-where near as difficult without it. We believe in what we do that by providing people with the reasonable framework in which to operate they will jump at the chance to get their message across and seek to improve on the Measure they described as part of the definition. We can do this for you! Please ask us how.
Turning Challenges into Opportunities
On this recent webinar, I worked through a start, middle and end for sharing best practises:
- Spotting the best practice. This can be the first challenge for businesses that some are unable to overcome. I share a straightforward way to start the conversation.
- Capturing the best practice in a way it can use useful. This doesn’t happen by magic and requires thought through careful facilitation and tools to make it so;
- Applying the best practice in another part of the business where you benefit from a return on your investment.
Watch the full Webinar here!
Here’s what one of the attendees fed back:
“Interesting from an analytics perspective as at the start of the project as you don’t know where you’re going to end up. It’s a very good of taking what numerous different teams have and finding what is common between them .. or where there is a resource in one area and a need in another and so how they tie together though interconnections” – Simon, May 2019
Why the bother?
When the team start talking, they have a chance to share what they really think, and so:
– They are more likely to be productive in their time with the company.
– The business will enjoy a ready supply of new opportunities each and every time you get to the truth- the challenge is working out what to do with them all! Boss Bill gets the most of her team and is able to translate that up to the board.
– Employees are likely to stay with the company for longer and that means avoiding the costs of rehiring- worse case 6-9 months of an the employee’s salary to locate and train a replacement and 2 years to become fully productive. Not to mention the toll on existing employee productivity and morale.
What we can help you with
Big Picture naturally generates extremely high engagement levels as you provide your people with the tools they require to share useful truths about the business. With light-touch delivery it means you can involve large group sizes, of up-to 20, with no drop off in engagement levels. This results in the highest Engagement levels we have ever seen for People and Business Development.
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The stuff WE care about is described in our FIVE Big Picture Frames on our YouTube channel @YourBigPic. You can have a go yourself by printing and writing on the one-pager here for a business YOU care about. I would love to take you through a taster of Big Picture in a Discovery Webinar you can sign-up for here.
And thanks for reading!