There’s no fail-safe handbook for running your business. A few people find managerial success though their own ability to see ways to improve systems. Yet, in the vast majority of cases, individuals fail to align company interests in effective and efficient ways. This leads to lost productivity and revenue—and sometimes, going out of business altogether. Anyone who says it’s easy to get all parts of an organization moving in the same direction has probably never done it.
People in managerial positions tend to sequester key information – and themselves – away from the rest of the company. Some people think that they can do a better job of things if they take on all the responsibility. To a certain degree, this might be true. After all, managers tend to have more expertise and skill than other employees.
The problem here is that business silos are stifling to the exchange of ideas and tend to unnecessarily concentrate decision-making powers. These things can all be hugely detrimental to organizations trying to improve internal operations. Businesses need to break out of the silo in order to realize their full potential.
Make Sure Everyone’s on the Same Page
For a small business that only has a few employees and focuses on one product or service, it’s not hard to figure out the overarching goals. Things get much more convoluted, however, when you’re working with a company of 500, 1,000, or even 10,000 workers. More likely than not, individuals in larger companies won’t know everyone’s name; they probably won’t even fully understand the way the corporation makes money.
To a certain degree it’s necessary to keep people focused on segmented tasks. Nothing will get done if everyone in your organization is spending all day thinking about the big picture. But going too far toward compartmentalizing will also be detrimental. Employees need to know some of the reasoning behind what they’re doing all day. Your company will lose out on a lot of fresh ideas if only a handful of people really understand the logic behind decisions.
Explore New Analytics Technologies
It’s no secret that companies that can collect and implement data most effectively will on average be more successful than those that fail to do this. In the past, this has required massive business intelligence teams, which aren’t exactly inexpensive or timely investments. Relational search is one newest innovations completely changing the world of data governance.
How easy is it to find what you’re looking for by typing a search term into Google? Well, apply that ease of use to BI, and you can begin to understand the immense applicability of relational search. This technology allows any employee with sufficient permissions to enter a search into the software. The program will then instantly synthesize the unique terms into one cogent output.
In many cases, relational search is governed by a central team who maintains security and governance by sharing granular levels of control over who sees the information. This allows companies to empower employees to leverage data analytics without getting into a data free-for-all. Breaking the silo and giving those individuals the power to investigate and improve their own protocol, can be hugely beneficial for a company as a whole.
Define Goals, Expectations, and Incentives
As already stated, it’s important to get everyone on the same page if you want to eliminate business silos. One of the best ways to do this is by clearly stating goals, expectations, and incentives. Once your organizational leadership has come together and decided on a best course of action, it needs to be put into place as soon as possible. Then again, employees are often resistant to change. This requires them to rethink the ways they’ve previously done things. You should understand that this isn’t easy for those who have known processes for years or decades.
In order to facilitate change and collaboration, it’s wise to tell people exactly what you want, and exactly what they’ll get if they meet or exceed those expectations. Going above and beyond what’s required is beneficial to your company; so, employees should see some form of compensation for this behavior. When you take this approach, make sure you don’t backtrack later on promises. That’s one surefire way to destroy employee loyalty.
Business silos are often an entrenched part of internal culture. They can be difficult to shake because of this. Consider some of these ideas when trying to break the engrained silos holding back your company.