How to Achieve Leadership Alignment

Jun 21, 2024 | Listen

How to Achieve Leadership Alignment

A common quality among thriving businesses is the presence of leadership alignment. If a business is on top, chances are it got there thanks to effective leadership, one that makes sure everyone in the company understands and works to achieve its goals. 

When this alignment is present, it can lead to sustainable business growth and success. But if it’s not there,  the tendency is that everyone will choose to work on their own agendas, which will not help you achieve your company goals. 

So, what exactly is leadership alignment? 

How can you achieve it in your business? 

Why is it so crucial for organizational success? 

And what does it take to get leadership alignment right?

Andy Katzman: Driving growth through Leadership Alignment

In this episode, Andy Katzman and I discuss the importance of leadership alignment in achieving strategic goals. He also shares how to cultivate alignment within your team to enhance productivity and innovation tips, tools, and strategies on how you can foster this alignment with your team members whatever the size of your business.



Timestamps for this week’s episode

01:55 Importance of leadership alignment

03:53  Transparent communication with employees

09:33 Tools to use for addressing misalignment

13:43 Receiving and acting upon employee feedback constructively

30:12 Actionable steps to take in achieving leadership alignment


“Sometimes as leaders, we lose sight of what it’s like to be an employee. Without information employees jump to conclusions which is not healthy or productive.” – Andy Katzman

Importance of leadership alignment

While it’s true leaders have their visionary plans and ideas, they also need to unite their employees to implement them effectively. Without this alignment, your business will have a hard time running smoothly. And to get this alignment, you need to communicate your plans and strategies to your teams to minimize confusion which will help foster a productive work environment.

As leaders, we have to be as transparent as we possibly can so they see that the leadership team is doing the best yet also understand that there are things you can't share right now.

Transparent communication with employees

Leaders must try to be as transparent as possible especially as companies transition back to traditional office settings. It’s natural for employees to wonder about closed-door meetings and notice those unspoken “changes” in the energy or “vibe” of the workplace. 

While some information may need to remain confidential temporarily, sharing what you can, or what is feasible, will go a long way in establishing trust. It also shows them that their leaders are acting in their best interest. Balancing transparency with discretion is a delicate art, but it’s needed to maintain good relations with your employees.

“To prevent silos from forming as your business grows, slow down to speed up…make sure that your team is aligned and really understands what’s going on. It’s easier to do that at the start than it is midway or towards the end of big initiatives.” – Andy Katzman

Tools to use for addressing misalignment

One powerful tool to help open communications and exchange feedback and constructive criticism professionally and respectfully is the SWOT analysis, which helps identify strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. 

It might be old school to some but its collaborative and visual approach encourages team members to share their different viewpoints and align on what needs to get done, what are the priorities, to help the organization toward its goals.

We need to be those empathetic leaders that are thoughtful, deliberate, and intentional with the work that we do. We only have one chance at this. Once we lose our credibility with our employees, then we're shot.

Receiving and acting on employee feedback constructively

If you’re a leader and you pay attention and act on employee feedback, expect your employees to trust you. Leaders must be open to feedback, empathize with their team, and address issues proactively. By doing so, you’ll strengthen your credibility and your employees will feel valued and supported, and be even more willing to help grow your business. 

“Productive conflict is not a bad thing. It’s actually a great way to get work done. We don’t always want to be stuck in groupthink. We want different perspectives and different things. We just have to learn how to be respectful.”- Andy Katzman

Actionable steps to take in achieving leadership alignment

Create an environment where all your employees, even your leaders, can speak up without fear. Keep the lines of communication open with regular check-ins and chats. You can also take the extra step and spend time for casual talks over coffee or lunch to hear what everyone’s thinking. When leaders and teams communicate openly and honestly, it sets the stage for everyone to work together smoothly toward achieving the company’s goals. 


Summary

  • Effective leadership means aligning teams to achieve the company goals together for smooth operations and sustained business growth.

  • Transparent communication builds trust and addresses employee concerns so they don’t worry unnecessarily and stay productive.

  • The SWOT analysis is a great tool to use to achieve leadership alignment. It encourages constructive feedback so teams  get on the same page regarding company priorities .

  • Listening to employee feedback fosters trust and credibility, driving business growth.

  • Creating an open environment where everyone can speak up promotes smooth collaboration towards company goals. 

Transcript

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About guest – Andy Katzman

Founder

Andy Katzman Small Business Advising

Andy Katzman is a Human Resources and operations executive with over 20 years of experience in progressive and cutting-edge People Operations and People & Culture leadership, leadership development, business operations and coaching for start-up and high growth Data and Data

Analytics, SaaS, Professional Services, and multimedia companies. Andy has experience in Private Equity, Venture Capital companies from pre-funded start-ups through self-funded and well-capitalized businesses.

Andy is experienced with building and revising full-cycle people programs as well as recruiting and retaining top talent. He has also designed and implemented HR strategy for many businesses in a variety of industries and lifecycle stages.

In 2024, Andy formed Andy Katzman Small Business Advising LLC to provide expertise and support to small businesses looking to create, revise, or refocus their People operations.

Website – https://aksba.net/

LinkedIn – https://www.linkedin.com/in/andy-katzman-a5b92117/


About host – Kathy Svetina

Kathy Svetina is a Fractional CFO for growing small businesses with $10M+ in annual revenue.

Clients hire her when they’re unsure about what’s going on in their finances, are stressed out by making financial decisions, or need to structure their finances to keep up with their growth.

She solves their nagging money mysteries and builds a financial structure with a tailored financial strategy. That way they can grow in a financially healthy and sustainable way.

Kathy is based in Chicago, IL and works with clients all over the US.

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