Not all companies are blessed with continual good looks and a fast car that follows a clear direction to the finish line. Companies get bought, absorbed, have new management, get lost or change their plan mid stream. A workshop is a safe place to create purposeful brand communication regarding strategy, process, and goals in a structured, neutral environment.
How do you know if this would help you? We usually determine if a workshop is required based on the need and the structure of the client business issues. Generally they fall into one or more of the following:
Change means not knowing exactly what to expect. And it’s even harder when that change is out of your hands and forces you to be reactive instead of proactive. It needs to be well managed or you can end up with even the most willing team subconsciously digging their heels in place, causing delays or even damage that has to be repaired.
Companies, and it doesn’t matter if it’s a new startup or large company with a distributed management structure, can tangent themselves into areas that never seem to fit the original brand. We once had a client COO tell us their company was Neiman Marcus and the client CEO said they were a Target. That sounds like a trite matter but what it showed was an inherent difference in how each person viewed the value proposition. If we didn’t align these two stakeholders, then no matter what the outcome one of them would have felt we missed the mark.
Sometimes it’s just time that takes over, sometimes it’s malaise, but often it’s simply turnover. We have a friend who worked at a famous restaurant where a world-renowned chef created an impressive menu. He trained the next chefs after him on the methodology and thinking behind his creations. They, in turn, trained the next set of chefs on the menus. By the time the 4th set of chefs had come, the restaurant had lost the original purpose behind the cooking. The food was still amazing but the menu became stagnant and uninspired. Reinvigorating and refreshing values and the ‘why’ of your business can inject much-needed energy and refocus.
Strong personalities can be a huge advantage if they work together, but we all know that situation is so much easier said than done. It takes social skills like empathy, humility, and a willingness to compromise to truly get a partnership working. Sometimes that needs a little nudge.
A workshop gives everyone the opportunity to speak in a safe place on equal ground. Most group dynamics have someone who speaks a lot vs someone who says nothing; but in a well-run workshop, everyone participates. This happens through clear moderation, a mix of activities with breakout groups, and expectation setting.