The leaders of most organizations craft business plans for the next calendar year based off of numbers and statistics such as sales information when they are setting revenue goals. While you undoubtedly need to take these factors into account, there is one area that leaders frequently forget to draw data from. By only focusing on external factors such as market trends, leaders forget to account for internal factors that are crucial to their organization’s success. And if you don’t survey your employees, your next business plan is going to suffer.
The results from surveys are more commonly being used to influence management decisions and improve internal inefficiencies in order to meet the goals of an organization. Fine-tuning your surveys will help build employee engagement and positively affect the ability of your management team to manage your top talent.
The questions you will want to include on your survey vary depending on the type of industry you are in. For example, let’s pretend that the success of your organization depends heavily on innovating new products to simultaneously meet the needs of your customers and make your organization stand out from the crowd. When structuring surveys for your employees, you would want to give them an opportunity to voice their opinions and ideas. Use the surveys as a means to find out if any of your employees have bright and innovate ideas concerning new and more efficient ways to solve an old problem.
On the other hand, if your organization has a competitive advantage in the customer service department, you might use the survey as an opportunity to gauge the effectiveness of customer service operations. Do your employees feel that they have the right tools and processes to adequately meet the needs of your customers? If not, you have just identified a pain point that will be able to help you structure a plan for next year to improve your business.
By reaching out and engaging your employees with surveys to structure your business plan for next year, you are essentially aligning the ideas and efforts of your employees with your future vision of the company. Doing so will help bridge the gap between management and their subordinates. In other less favorable scenarios, employees don’t get a chance to voice their ideas and communicate potential problems because they are force-fed solutions from their superiors. Communication needs to happen in both directions to create the best plan for the future of your company, but business plans that are communicated from the top to the bottom of the organizational hierarchy seem obtuse and callous.
Because employee engagement has such a large impact on the success of a business, bridging the communication gap between the visionaries and the low-level employees is critical for your future. All it takes is one well-structured survey to provide organizational leaders with enough ideas and ammunition to create a business plan that will crush your competition and take your business to new heights.