No one really likes change. Whenever elections cause changes on the Federal or State level, we often tend to worry. Worrying won’t solve anything, however planning will.
With the election season behind us and the changes taking place both at the Federal and State levels, revisiting and adjusting your plan for Continuous Improvement will provide a bounty of benefits for the success of your organization.
Here are three things to keep in mind as you navigate the waters of change:
#1 – Tell your story.
Research great things going on throughout your organization, develop stories about those successes, and get the news out to your constituents. Use your website, email newsletters, social networking, and your local news media to make sure the people you serve hear all the great things going on. Letting your customers know your organization is a good steward of their money, especially if you receive taxes from them, will be key to the success of your future goals.
#2 – Actively touch base with your stakeholders.
Reach out to your stakeholders and ask where they think your organization should be headed. Stakeholders include your customers, your constituents, your shareholders, your employees, and anyone else who might interact with your organization. There are many ways to receive feedback, but the most effective methods involve sitting down for one-on-one conversations with your stakeholders. We call these conversations Key Stakeholder Interviews, and we can arrange to interview your stakeholders for you so you can have an independent third-party speak with your stakeholders so they can feel comfortable saying exactly what they think. You need to know where your stakeholders think you’re succeeding and where you have room for change in order to achieve continuous improvement.
#3 – Offer methods of two-way communication for your community to talk to you.
Social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter can be an excellent way for your community to offer immediate feedback so you know how they perceive your organization. Let’s be clear about social networking – it is no longer optional. With over one billion active daily users, Facebook has become a primary method for members of almost every audience to receive news about their friends, family, their schools, favorite companies, and brands. Every school district and organization needs to have a Facebook account. Twitter continues to gain in popularity, and although its 140-character message capacity might seem limiting, many users rely on Twitter to get up-to-date news on all of the organizations they follow. Twitter also offers its users the ability to send messages directly to you, giving you a method to reach out directly to anyone who might have questions.
Don’t fear change.
Heraclitus, a Greek philosopher, is credited with saying “change is the only constant in life.” Remember that your plans for the future should be fluid. Regularly revisit your plans for continuous improvement and make the necessary adjustments to ensure your organization stays on-track with whatever changes might happen to your community, your customers, or the political environment. Don’t fear change. Embrace it and adapt to it.
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If you need assistance, please feel free to contact edTactics for free consultations and to discuss your organization’s current and future needs. You can reach us by calling (360) 566-7616 or learn more about us by visiting our website at www.edtactics.com or following our Facebook (www.fb.com/edTactics) and Twitter accounts (www.twitter.com/edTactics).
Art Edgerly & Eric Jacobson