By: Christi Johnson, Strategic Management Consulting Services
The following is part 17 of a multi-part series on The KHA Way, KHA Management Consulting’s Integrated Service Offering. This blog series includes the benefits of using KHA Management Consulting Services and the components included.
Our previous blog series on the 3rd phase of KHA Accountant’s PLLC ‘KHA Way’: Corporate Strategy offered suggestions for immediate adoption on how to better improve your organization’s strategic planning process. The information gained from your organization’s strategic planning process will define your business’ desired targets and the plan to achieve those goals. The 4th phase of our ‘KHA Way’ service offering is Process Alignment. Process Alignment is key to ensuring all members of an organization are working toward a common goal.
The following is part one of a six-part series on the 4th phase of KHA Accountant’s PLLC ‘KHA Way’: Process Alignment. The goal of this blog series is to offer insight into how our team at KHA Management Consultants can help you determine and implement the necessary business processes to achieve your desired corporate strategy and targets.
Processes and procedures are a part of every organization whether they are formalized or not. The noticeable difference between a successful, well-managed organization and one that is segmented and plagued with numerous problems is clearly defined, properly designed, effectively communicated, and monitored. An organization that has clearly defined processes should be cohesive and unified regarding their organization goals and missions. However, the management teams of these organizations often confide that they are frustrated by the same lack of follow through and process breakdown that is experienced by their counterparts in less formalized process settings. When engaged, our KHA Management Consulting Team will facilitate the process with your management team to help identify the specific process breakdown point by simply asking, “How have you designed, communicated, and monitored your processes?” The answer given to this one question will often point to the specific area of concern, design, communication, or monitoring. And often, the answer differs by your leaders showing a lack of continuity and clarity in the organization. We can help fix both!
The design of the process is where it all begins. Thus, the entire business process must be fully documented as it is currently performed. KHA will assist by performing and documenting walkthroughs with key team members. This includes creating a visual map so that an understanding of any potential issues and possible improvements is visually depicted. It must be noted that key member buy-in is essential for the success of any process, either existing or new. Once the revised process has been agreed upon, it must be formally documented with the visual map with an easy-to-understand narrative for the end user. In fact, many organizations fail to realize this critical issue until it is too late. For instance, what happens if a key individual becomes incapacitated or decides to leave? If the information necessary to perform their job functions is not documented, how can it be replicated or taught to a successor? We run across this situation more often than we like to admit, being called in once the person has left or is no longer able to perform the job. It is one of the most painful experiences for a business owner or manager to deal with.
After the process is designed and documented, it is imperative that the communication of the new process be delivered appropriately for the organization. This communication should involve the importance of the change, how it will help the organization achieve success, and how it affects employees and should spearhead excitement in the organization, especially the end-users. This is rarely accomplished through email, so it is imperative that time be taken to roll out the process effectively.
Lastly, the monitoring of the process is essential to ensuring that the desired changes and outcomes are achieved by implementing the business process. Regular monitoring will ensure that employees follow the processes that have painstakingly been created for the organization’s greater good and not lapse back into old habits. The frequency of monitoring should depend on how critical the process is to your organization, but monitoring must be consistent and provide clarity and direction to employees.
In part two of the Process Alignment series, we will cover how departmental key performance indicators (KPIs) are an invaluable tool for monitoring business processes.
At KHA Management Consultants, we work with mid-market industry leaders to identify what makes the organization, its stakeholders, and its’ employees tick. We facilitate Process Alignment with your organization’s key constituents to ensure buy-in, ownership, and a new way of thinking about the organization and its stakeholders amongst all levels. From a resource perspective, we primarily use our unmatched experience but also tap into the top-level resources such as those made available by Harvard Business Review, relevant strategic management authors, and MentorPlus. Some of those materials, frameworks, and lessons have been used in authoring this series.
KHA Management Consultants, the consulting department of KHA Accountants, PLLC, based in Flower Mound, Texas, is always looking for opportunities to work with key clients ready to take their organization to the next level. If you have a desire to improve, take the first step toward success with the strategic management experts, and contact us at 972-221-2500.