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C3IQ Organizational Performance Self-Assessment
The most tempting thing to do when confronted with a problem is immediately take action to correct it. Unfortunately, many business problems are merely symptoms whose causes are not fully understood or addressed until after “the solution” has been applied without full success. To a hammer, everything looks like a nail. Similarly, for many seeking business improvement, everything often looks like a process. No competent doctor would start prescribing medication for a sore gut without ruling out a diagnosis of cancer or other causes. Surprisingly, many transformation leaders often skip the diagnosis before starting the cure. Even when that is the situation, it is highly productive to conduct a proper diagnostic assessment that will either (a) confirm that you are on the right track already or (b) reveal new insights enabling a course correction. The C3IQ Organizational Performance Self-Assessment may be the quickest way to determine which situation is yours.
Barriers to Enterprise Excellence
There are a number of symptoms that strongly suggest the sources of many barriers to enterprise excellence are not mainly related to process:
- The enterprise strategic plan does not specifically describe customer desired outcomes, measures of their success, or numerical goals for improvement.
- Leadership’s priorities and directives are ambiguously communicated, creating confusion, conflict, delay, and rework. (See Six Leadership Levers)
- The number of complaints and size of customer service and support functions have grown faster than the number of new customers acquired; there is no goal to significantly shrink those numbers by improved product design or innovation.
- The rank of the enterprise among its industry peers has not significantly improved in the past two years.
- Management commitments are not quickly, reliably, and fully executed as planned.
- Employee performance evaluations are universally hated and do not clearly connect to strategic objectives and customer priorities.
- The main way customer priorities are determined is through surveys. See Are Your Surveys Mostly Suitable for Wrapping Fish?
- Different departments and business units operate under their own silo-specific practices, in conflict with others.
- There is no articulated and broadly practiced method for determining who “the customer” is or what they most value about products they use.
- Critical knowledge is lost when talent leaves the enterprise; succession planning is only done for less than .1% of employees.
- Processes are changed but customers experience little or no improvement in responsiveness.
- Many initiatives are in place, though there is no unifying system integrating them together and connecting them to strategic direction.
If you said YES to at least half of these symptoms, the root cause may be the culture of the enterprise. Peter Drucker and many other management gurus have long stated that culture eats strategy and otherwise defeats change leaders’ best intentions. Changing the culture is among the most complex endeavors a change leader can take on. Although we have had amazing success, it is not for the faint of heart and should only be started if the key elements for success are in place. So before we take on that task, let’s find out where we are and what it is that needs changing.
Actions to Take
Unlike a traditional IQ test that seeks to evaluate our personal cognitive ability, the C3IQ is intended as an organizational performance assessment of priorities and practices of a customer-centered culture. Start by spending about 5 minutes to take the assessment personally. The total possible score is 125. If yours is 100 or better, you can reasonably conclude you are doing most of the right things. Congratulations! If your score is less than 100, there is a likelihood culture is at the root of your enterprise performance issues. There are several actions you can take next:
- Attend Mastering 8 Dimensions of Excellence at a rare public workshop or arrange to have it conducted in-house for your special audience. This very practical session inspires, enables and equips you to see the elements of your culture that are impeding success and provides the system, roadmap, and tools to achieve the transformation you want.
- Read the book, Mastering Excellence: A Leaders Guide to Aligning Strategy, Culture, Customer Experience and Measures of Success.
- Call us to arrange a personal discussion with one of the top international experts in the field, Robin Lawton. There is no cost or obligation. Our objective is to first understand your special circumstances and objectives before considering specific remedies.
- If you have identified a specific area needing improvement, consider using the matching C3 Tools suite. Free support is included, as indicated on each suite.
Uncovering the Shared Truth
Just to be sure your view of things is the same as what others think, it would be wise to ask at least ten of your colleagues and/or those who report to you to also take the assessment. The larger the number and the more diverse the group taking the assessment, the more likely you are to arrive at the truth about the organization’s C3IQ. Uncovering that shared truth is the goal. If everyone gets a 100-plus score, you can confidently conclude there is nothing more to read here. Congratulations! You are already close to the walking-on-water stage of excellence.