Are you struggling with team alignment in your organization? There are several reasons why you should get team alignment in place. Implementation of any strategy will begin by educating, aligning, and involving individuals who are responsible for it. Without the presence of cross-functional team alignment within an organization, even the best strategies might end up failing.
As your organization grows, team alignment is increasingly difficult to retain. As far as increasing employee engagement is concerned, you are expected to think of a wide range of ideas and strategies. While it is important to ensure that employees are motivated, company alignment is an important factor to consider.
What is Team Alignment?
Team alignment can be achieved when cross-functional team members and teams work toward a similar vision while understanding the respective team and individual goals. Team members are also able to observe how the respective contributions connect to the broader organizational goals.
As per the experts, when teams tend to be engaged and aligned, organizations will benefit from improved productivity, higher employee engagement, increased communication, faster decision making, increased agility, and retention to respond effectively to external factors.
At its foundation, goal or team alignment refers to the understanding of the employees of the missions, visions, and goals of the organization. They are specifically expected to understand the core parts of the corporate values of the organization towards aligning themselves with the respective goals. Once they are fully capable of understanding organizational goals, they are able to truly function towards achieving mutual success.
8 Tips to Improve Your Team Alignment
The implementation of a reliable team alignment strategy will deliver a wide range of benefits to the organization. Once you understand the importance of team alignment for your business, it is important to consider some important ways to improve the same. Here are some strategies you can use to achieve your goals.
1. Define a Clear Direction
For effective team alignment, it is imperative for you to emphasize the importance of proper direction, roles, and responsibilities of different teams. When you define the roles, responsibilities, and direction of the team explicitly, it will indeed lead to improved team alignment. It is also important because it will help in forgetting tasks or avoiding overlaps. Some of the ways in which you can define clear responsibilities and roles include:
- Understanding the strengths of the team
- Determining what is required to be done
- Meeting to discuss priorities on an ongoing basis
- Giving people ownership over particular areas
- Asking employees about the long-term goals
- Aligning roles & responsibilities with the goals of the teams
2. Emphasize How Each Person Helps Achieve the End Goals
When you ensure collective goals amongst team members, it will help in ensuring team alignment. However, when you ensure individual goals of every team member in the organization, it will help in achieving the end goals even more efficiently.
For instance, if the collective goal of the organization is to boost organic traffic, some team members can contribute by creating specific amounts of social copies on a weekly basis. On the other hand, you can ask others to write a fixed number of blogs every week in the team. It will help your organization achieve collective goals with individual efforts.
3. Use OKRs
Cross functional or organizational alignment is critical to ensure the overall success of an organization. In the given context, OKRs are capable of contributing to improved company alignment. For instance, when you make use of dedicated Alignment Workshops, it serves to be an integral component of the entire OKR cycle.
It will help all employees and teams coordinate the respective goal objectives with one another. This will help in the creation of improved goal transparency between individual teams while preventing duplicate work and stress.
4. Delegate Individual Responsibilities
One effective way to ensure team alignment is by being transparent with the unique roles of every team member within the organization. When everyone is aware of what they are doing and toward which objective, it helps in the creation of a notion of trust and accountability. Therefore, it is crucial to define individual roles and responsibilities within organizations.
Within the EOS business model, the role definition is referred to as the ‘Accountability Chart.’ It helps in eliminating duplicate ownership and individuals stepping over each other. When it is implemented properly, every team member can stay focused while making a significant impact throughout the organization.
5. Be Authentic
If you are not aware of authenticity within an organization setup, you will never be able to find balance in your corporate life. As you live authenticity, it will include adhering to the personal values. At the same time, you are also expected to decide your specific values and what it will feel like to live them.
You can ask yourself questions like:
- What is the most important thing to me in my life? Stability? Experiences? Family?
- How do I want my personal life to be?
- What brings the most joy to me?
6. Offer Assistance
When you wish to foster team alignment, try assisting and guiding the team in the right direction such that they are capable of solving the problem themselves. This will help them with proper problem-learning skills while serving as a teaching moment.
When you are the team leader, you should offer assistance and guidance while allowing individuals to make some mistakes. In some cases, mistakes can also become big-time success.
7. Organize Alignment Meetings
With the objective of starting a new mission or project, a dedicated alignment meeting can be organized as an interactive session. The meeting should be aimed at ensuring that all team members remain on the same page while aligning with the OKRs of the respective project.
8. Organize Team-building Activities Outside the Office
Team building activities like games and other interactive sessions can help in fostering trust, helping individuals to grow, and building better relationships amongst team members. When this session takes place outside the organization, it helps in boosting positivity and happiness amongst employees.
Long-term success will involve leaders to think beyond the delivery of particular initiatives while focusing on the development of sustainable business practices.