EMPOWERING MID-SIZE SERVICE FIRMS TO ACHIEVE THEIR MOST IMPORTANT GOALS
What Is This Service?
Our Leadership Alignment service empowers successful mid-size service firms to accelerate growth and enhance resilience for the long haul. For over 20 years now, The Shattuck Group has coached more 70 mid-sized service firms, those with 25-100 staff and 10-50 million in revenue. We’ve seen what happens when leaders of these firms develop deep trust amongst team members. We’ve also seen what happens when trust and transparency are not actively nurtured.
Alignment amongst leaders goes well beyond simply agreeing about a few key things. For instance, no service firm we’ve ever served was confused about the imperative to make money. There was also little confusion about their specific industry or even the services they offer. But knowing that you need to make money and knowing the industry you’re in and the services you want to offer—this is not true alignment.
Deep alignment amongst leaders is the result of gut-level trust and clarity—about the future, where you’re going as a firm, how you’ll get there, how you’ll behave along the way and what the end-state looks like. Alignment is also about long-term commitment, through thick and thin. Aligned leaders are committed for the long haul, to the firm and to each other. They know where they’re going, how they’ll get there and how they must behave along the way; they are deeply committed to getting there with their teammates, no matter what obstacles come their way.
Most mid-sized service firms assume that they have clarity amongst their leaders about these topics. But in our experience, three situations reveal that the alignment they thought they had is not at all what they really have:
- An exciting but risky opportunity that might shortcut the business toward the end-goal.
- A challenging situation that represents an existential threat to the business.
- A key employee behaving in ways that some leaders find objectionable while others do not.
Time after time we’ve seen these three situations reveal not only the micro-misalignments that were already present between leaders, they also clearly display what we call trust-fissures. In geological terms, a fissure is a crack in the earth that produces a distinct separation, often as the result of intense thermal pressure built up beneath the surface. This same concept applies to nearly every leadership team we’ve served at mid-sized professional service firms. Every one of them had trust-fissures.
Our Leadership Alignment service fixes trust-fissures. It enhances vulnerability and transparency between leaders, creating bonds that are so strong that leadership teams can withstand almost any circumstance. This service allows us to work closely and collaboratively with leaders to create a common vision for the future that everyone believes in, is committed to and is willing to work hard to achieve.
WHY YOU NEED THIS SERVICE:
THE NUMBER ONE DETERMINANT FOR BREAKING THROUGH TO YOUR NEXT LEVEL IS LEADERSHIP ALIGNMENT AND COMMITMENT.
Most leaders of mid-size service firms tell us that their “culture” is pretty strong. They often have senior leaders who know each other well and who’ve been active contributors for many years. But even in these organizations, we’ve discovered micro-misalignments that impede decision-making, execution and strategy adoption. There is often far more than an inch of daylight between these leaders on all sorts of issues. Micro-misalignments collectively can produce macro-drag. This results in slower-than-expected growth, frustrating leaders.
But that’s not likely the most important reason for adopting this service. Every client we’ve served for the last 20+ years has experience adversity at some point on their journey. Adversity creates stress and showcases, in very real ways, how micro-misalignments can have macro-consequences. Organizations that have not actively and intentionally nurtured trust and collaboration between their leaders will really struggle in these moments. Many of them will fail as a business.
This service addresses all of these issues by empowering firm leaders to:
- Intentionally build trust through personal storytelling and sharing of major life events that have shaped who they are today, how they think and what they value.
- Create clarity about their purpose for existing, what behaviors they value and what they’re trying to achieve as a team.
- Weather storms of adversity with resilient, bounce-back responses to fluid and challenging situations.
- Truly, and maybe for the first time ever, become a real team, not just a collection of professionals who work at the same company.
- Collaborate, not just cooperate, with each other to achieve their most important goals.
- Create a best-idea-wins decision-making process.
- Reduce or completely eliminate politics and unhealthy competitive dynamics.
- Leverage each leader’s strengths to the best and highest use for the organization overall.
- Defeat, once and for all, tribalism and departmental thinking.
To learn more about how we do this, please click on Our Approach above.
Who Needs This Service?
Professional service firms who:
- Have spirited leaders who often don’t see things eye-to-eye.
- Have struggled to communicate with each other freely and openly, with the air of old friends chatting rather than high-stakes competitors seeking an advantage against an opponent.
- Really want to grow and feel as if some sort of malaise lies over their firm that is holding them back, but they can’t put their finger on what it is or how to fix it.
- Need to institute a best-idea-wins decision-making process.
- Have tried numerous strategies that seemed so perfect at the beginning, only to find that their results were mediocre. This has left them with a lack of confidence in their ability to chart a course and actually achieve their goals.
- Have experienced politics and employee turn-over that derails team members from focusing on work.
- Feel like a set of departments that cooperate with each other rather than a true team that works cohesively on goals that really impact growth.
- Recognize that leadership alignment is crucial to realizing next-level results.