Motivating New Workplace Initiatives to Achieve Strategic Goals | HRDQ-U Webinar

Motivating New Workplace Initiatives to Achieve Strategic Goals

This On-Demand event was originally presented on September 22, 2021 (60 min)


Our workplace cultures and day-to-day operations continue to evolve rapidly. All of us find ourselves responding to massive changes in our world of work and economy every day. All while grappling with changes in how our clients and customers interact with our products and services. While all those elements are keenly valuable to our organizations, we also are experiencing the changing expectations and desires of our employees.

Today more than ever, the need to innovate and redesign internal operations, engagement strategies, and services are critical. This call for transformation requires leaders to balance how they respond to diverse and often complicated changes while optimizing business practices. This will ultimately result in higher employee engagement and business success.

Innovation Design does not have to be lengthy or complicated. This webinar will show you how a simple 45-minute session can help you calibrate workplace innovation priorities and quickly (plus elegantly) innovate and design the future of work.

Attendees will learn

  • How to integrate three approaches to building your innovation culture.
  • Three questions you should always ask your employees before your redesigning your workplace.
  • How to understand the five most common types of workplace innovation.
  • How to apply the five-step jump-start process to kick off your redesign journey.
  • How to prepare for your organization’s first 45-minute Innovation Strategy Session.


Dr. Judith Cardenas’ helps leaders, teams and organizations build cultures of innovation.

Her academic background includes a doctorate in education administration, as well as a doctorate in training and performance improvement. She has completed a variety of postdoctoral training, including Leadership Development at Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government, MIT Approach to Design Thinking and Neurocoaching in the area of Innovation from NeuroBusiness Group.

Judith is a Registered Corporate Coach and a Professional Certified Return on Investment Professional.

Judith has created and delivered training to organizations and agencies such as the World Bank, United Nations, QVC, Inc., Phillips Semiconductor, U. S. Navy, U. S. Nuclear Regulatory Agency and U.S. Army, National Institute for Staff and Organizational Development/UT Austin and American College of Radiology.

Connect with Judith on LinkedIn and Twitter.


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Strategies By Design

Strategies By Design helps foster the culture of innovation needed to stay competitive in today’s modern, ever-changing market. Applying innovative techniques and approaches to achieve immediate engagement and growth, enhancing the connection between behavior design and human-centric design.

Website: www.

On-Demand Webinar Recording
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Motivating New Workplace Initiatives to Achieve Strategic Goals


Hi everyone and welcome to today’s webinar, Motivating New Workplace Initiatives to Achieve Strategic Goals, hosted by HRDQ-U and presented by Doctor Judith Cardenas.


My name is Sarah, and I will moderate today’s webinar. The webinar will last around one hour.


If you have any questions, please type them into the question area on your GoToWebinar control panel and we’ll answer as many as we can during today’s session.


If you have yet to download today’s handouts you can do so now, and you’ll find those under the handouts tab on your GoToWebinar control panel.


Today’s webinar is sponsored by Strategies by Design Group. Strategies by Design Group specializes in supporting leaders and organizations that are ready to innovate faster and more successfully and want to design better solutions or experiences for their customers and employees.


Help foster the culture of innovation needed to stay competitive in today’s modern and ever-changing market.


Strategies by Design group applies innovative techniques and approaches to achieve immediate engagement and growth to enhance the connection between behavior design and human centric design.


Learn more at WWW dot strategies by design group dot com.


I’m excited to introduce our presenter today, Doctor Judith Cardenas.


Judith, expertise is that the intersection of behavior design, and innovation, our academic background includes a Doctorate in Education Administration, as well as a doctorate and training and performance improvement.


She has completed a variety of postdoctoral training, including Leadership development at Harvard University’s, John F Kennedy School of Government and Human Performance Improvement at the American Society for Training and Development and Human Capital Analytics.


Not only is she certified as a registered business coach and a professional for return on investment from Villanova University. She alternative vacations in the area of Innovation from MIT.


Judith created and delivered training to organizations and agencies, such as the World Bank, United Nations, QVC, the US Navy and US Army and the American College of Radiology. It’s wonderful to have you with us today. Do that.


Thank you, thank you, Sarah, and thank you, everybody, for joining us today.


So today I want to talk about something that’s near and dear to my heart, really about organizations that have come to us in the last several months saying, our people are tired. Our people are exhausted. We are zoomed out.


And yet, we have some critical initiatives and changes we’re going to need to make, And, yet our change seems to be failing faster and faster, instead of us moving faster, faster.


So, recent studies show that an estimated 70% of organizational changes fail to achieve strategic content.


So, the intent is there, but, oftentimes, the intent and the action often are not aligned.


So, we wanted to start off today with a quick poll.


And, Sarah, I’d love for you to help me with this poll.


We are asking what percentage of change initiatives you are involved in with are successful.


zero to 25%, 25 to 50%, 50 to 75%, or 75 to 100%.


So what percentage of your change initiatives are successful?


So we’ll give you a moment to share with us your insights.


I’ll give you about a minute here to submit your answer, then we’ll share those results on screen.


I’m excited to see the results. So this is great.


And thank you everyone who’s sharing their insights with us.


Yes, and we will now share those results. Judith, can you see those up there on your screen? Yes, I can.


So 19% of you said that zero to 25% of your initiatives are successful. The change initiatives you’re involved with are successful.


Well, 25 to 30%, 29% of all of you said that up to 50% of your initiatives are successful.


And 43%, which is wonderful. Say that 50 to 75% are successful. That there’s only 10% of us on this call who say that 100% of our initiatives that were involved in our successful. So thank you for sharing that with me. And for those of you who said 100% bravo, we’d love to hear more about your work culture, what you’re doing, to initiate this type of wonderful success rates.


one of the other things that we are finding out, and we want to get a quick poll to really understand where you and your team and your organization, this is, what factors are negatively impacting your change initiatives?


Does it have to do with the culture of people resistant to change, or their competing priorities, or something else going on?


So, Sarah, if you could open the poll for us, and, and let’s see what our audience tells us.


Yeah, we’ll give you about a minute here. You can select all that apply.


And, again, we’re just, we’re really interested in understanding, what is that negative impact in My organization is, systems are safe.


We hear a lot, people are just resistant to change, Or, just have so many competing priorities, and they’re always changing.


So we’d love to know more about what’s going on in your, your space.


OK, great, and then we will share those results now.


You go, the results show green.




Interesting. So 59% of you said that organizational readiness for change is negatively impacting your change initiatives.


72% say people are resistant to change. And we’ve been there, we can feel your pain. And we know exactly, we deal with teams. On a daily basis, you just have such a high resistance to change.


52% of you said, you have competing priorities, and 24% of you said that there’s another factor that’s influencing or impacting your change initiatives. So, thank you, thank you so much for sharing that information, and great, great, great information, too, to consider as we move forward with this particular webinar.


So, why is this critical and why now?


And, as we said before, organizations come to us for a variety of reasons. They need to move fast. They need to innovate differently.


The world has changed, It’s on its head half the time.


And so, they need to find new and creative ways to respond to their clients, but these change initiatives are just coming up too fast.


So, what we do know is organizations spend billions of dollars a year. We’ve had organizations who told us that they about change management software, hire change consultants to come in.


They kicked off initiatives. They trained people and still, we are still working with a large number of organizations who just fail on their change initiative.


So we also have her on a continuous basis. Oh my God, my chains are exhausted. We go from project to project.


We’re on zoom from the beginning of the morning until the end of the day. And what we’re doing is talking about our projects and our successes.


And we just moved from project to project, not necessarily thinking strategically or whether or not this project is really moving us towards our strategic initiative.


Teams tend to slug through projects and initiatives. Sometimes the energy is high at the beginning, and then within a week or two, the Motivation ships.


And then, on top of that, competing priorities pop in.


This slug is actually not only slows down the, the initiative for the project.


It also slows down people’s creativity and their ability to innovate.


2018 Harvard Business Article, Too Many Projects, How to Deal with Initiative Overload.


Alastair Watkins’ really identified some key things that we have seen time and time again, are examples of what organizations and teams really struggle with.


And we’d love to hear your thoughts and ideas on there, they’re their findings.


So, one of their major findings is called impact blindness.


This is basically the teams, are really working, an overload team, and team leaders are working for them, and, oftentimes, they are blinded by the impact or lack of impact their project is having on the overall organization or on the strategic direction.


They’re just slugging along, they’re going from project to project, and overall, all projects feel equal.


All projects feel the same.


At the end of the day, even though 1 co 1 project may take priority over another, there is impact blindness that actually influences a T.


The multiplier effect, Let’s face it. We all work in organizations where we do not have the luxury of working one project at a time.


Many of us are working on 5 or 7 projects easily on a weekly or monthly basis.


You multiply the effect of the blindness impact and the multiple projects and the lack of energy and time, and then you add the elements that all of us are facing today.


Actually working virtually, or sometimes face-to-face, or a mix of both.


And maybe our teams are remote face to face, and so all these impacts of this impacts the effect and effectiveness of our project initiatives.


This is one of our favorites. We hear all the time unfunded mandates.


We get a mandate from a policy or a board, or an organization or entity that has some type of influence inside our organization.


And that mandate has to be responded to almost immediately on top of all the initiatives top-up all the projects that we currently have.


Now, I don’t know how many of you are dealing with funded mandates.


But I would say on an average, nine out of ten organizations that we work with have some type of alpha funded mandate that comes down and in a regulatory way.


So they have no choice, but to actually react to it and actually respond to it. But that just adds on to the whole element and fundamental feel of what’s going on inside an organization as relates to change.


And then one of my favorites, the band-aid initiatives, we’ve all been there, where we have an issue that’s popped up, something that was posted on social media.


Uh, doesn’t that come up at a board meeting, A new product, a competitor that’s popped up in the market.


And we are running to actually design some type of solution or incentive, it’s going to meet that immediate short-term need and it’s simply just a band-aid at this particular point.


But when you add the band-aid along with the unfunded mandates along with the multiple competing priorities, there’s no, no, you realize why teams are exhausted and why team leaders tend to be quite exhausted.


We want to ask you, which overlooked symptom have you experienced in the last year inside your organization?


Impact blindness, where all the projects feel the same and you just lose focus of what has an impact on your strategic direction.


The multiplier effect, the Band-aid Initiative, unfunded mandate. None of these are all of these. So Sarah, could you open the poll again for us to see? We’re just really interested and understand what overlooked symptom of these organizations that are actually joining us today have experienced this last year.


Yes, So take about a minute here, and you can select all that apply to you, then we’ll share those results.


About 10 more seconds to submit your answer.


OK, great, so now look at those results up on the screen.


Wow, so 48% of you have shared with us that impact blindness.


You’ve actually experienced that within the last year, 52%, the multiplier effect, 43% funded mandate, 15% band-aid initiatives, and 9%, none of the above.


So let’s think about the polls that we have talked about. We have organizations, and just our small group of people that have joined us today with our organizations, who’ve had maybe 50% success rate with their change initiatives.


Then we have organizations which the main negative impact, or influence that, is actually influencer, that’s impacting their change initiatives is organizational readiness. And people’s willingness to change. And then on top of that, we have all these overload symptoms that are occurring almost simultaneously.


And for us, the band-aid initiative, and the impact of blindness or some of the top overload symptoms that your organization may have experienced this year.


So this leaves us pretty much exhausted and not interested in innovation.


We’ve had a number of leaders and teams, say, we would love to be innovative, but not right now.


Or actually, which not, it feels like another initiative, another flavor of the month.


Oh, here we go, another training.


So how do we jump start these new initiatives? How do we create energy, how do we create them?


Some ability to refocus and reach erect our team so that we can move faster and with a higher level of agility.


And most importantly, can we start them in a way that it doesn’t feel like another flavor of the month?


That has been our quest. The last, I would say, 9 to 10 months, where we’ve had organizations who are highly interested in being innovative.


Love the idea of designing new and innovative solutions.


You’re just so overwhelmed, their employees are very resistant to change, and the organizational structure really doesn’t allow or support fast, change, growing change, and yet, we’re in a world that’s constantly changing almost from day to day.


So, we decided to create a new approach to see what we could do to jumpstart our teams to refocus and be direct and we’d like to share with you some of the tools and techniques and applications we use with our clients at this time to see if you can use these with yours to quickly apply a new way to jumpstart your initiatives.


one of the main things we start off with is consider design your workplace culture and rituals.


Now, many people look at us, when we bring that to the table, is they want to change people.


And our approach is that you’re not going to change someone, especially someone who is overwhelmed or team that’s tire, or organization that’s just been battered.


But we can change our cultures and our rituals that are related to initiatives and change initiatives.


So I would challenge all of you consider designing your workplace initiatives and we’re going to go through a little bit of how exactly, that looks and feels.


one of the things that we truly believe is that workplace culture is a system.


It’s a system decision making strategies.


It’s a decision of collaboration approaches, how to collaborate.


when we collaborate, Format, we collaborate, the brew.


How often, we collaborate.


And we know that culture and innovation go hand in hand.


Innovation leads to a healthy workplace culture and loops back around.


So unless you redesign your culture, in regards to initiatives and Rachel’s, you’ll never get to a place where you can actually build upon innovation.


So one of the first areas that we focus on working with the team is around misalignment.


Now, alignment has had a lot of press in H B R and in Forbes magazine, and in many other types of research that talks about the power of alignment, team alignment, focus, alignment, alignment with your mission, alignment with your culture.


But what we do know is that we know, well, we’re miss the line.


We know worldwide, and oftentimes it’s just a small degree of a shift of an approach that actually moves you from alignment to misalignment.


May test research solutions to the wrong challenges.


And I will tell you, for our clients, this is about 80% of the time.


They hear the problem, they hear overcharge.


And they quickly get a team in a room, put a bunch of sticky notes up, and identify solutions.


Sometimes, and we would say, around 60, 70% of the time, it’s the wrong challenge.


We’re all biased to hear a specific issue, and, from our perspective, to define what that issue really means.


And when you put a room full of leaders in, in a meeting to search for a solution, they will all come up with the solution that they perceive will actually adjust the problem.


But if it’s the wrong problem, you’ll be back to this issue within a short period of time.


So as I said, misalignment can actually occur within like, a degree or so of an alignment to a misalignment strategy.


Sometimes the team is focused, they’re very directed.


They’re very customer oriented.


They’re focused on their mission at hand.


The misalignment often comes in searching for solutions to the challenges it just misaligned them in a misaligned everything from that point on, communication, decision making, design, strategy.


So I ask all of you to think, and think with me, is your organization or team searching for solutions for the wrong challenge?


We also have what we know is inconsistent commitment.


We’ve been there.


We, we can show that the most, the timeframe where you have the most commitment to an initiative or to a project is that the onset of that particular project.


People are excited. They’re cheering you on. You’ve been added to this new team.


This initiative’s important to the overall mission of the organization and yet, with maybe a couple of weeks, that commitment wins a little bit.


Now, this ties back to the original Harvard Business Review 2018 article, because you can be committed 100%.


But what band-aid effects and with mandates that are coming down and multiple priorities that are hitting you, and people who just generally tend to not want to change, the commitment wains with time.


So that inconsistency in commitment also slows the ability for an organization to jumpstart your project or it can jumpstart and jump right back down.


This is no different than an experience that our customers or clients have with us in their journey with us.


They’re excited to, to engage with us, to engage with our products, but maybe after a while, we didn’t respond to them fast enough, that was not enough momentum, that commitment starts to run down.


So think about, Do I have overload people who are resistant to change?


Are we creating solutions for the wrong challenge? Is there inconsistency in our commitment to that particular challenge?


The other thing is that context is missing.


We have organizations, small and large, who tend to be working on initiatives, problems, challenges, strategic initiatives, within there are small parameters.


Are there small length within their team, within their division?


Cross functional teams, although, are highly suggested, they rarely happen. So a team may focus on outreach to a new customer market. But they don’t necessarily talk to integrated marketing.


And IT or IT may have identified a new tech tool that is going to revolutionize your organization. But they didn’t talk to the people who actually are going to have to implement it.


So, oftentimes, context is missing context of the charge, the strategic initiative, and understanding how your team, actually, of their energy moves up and down across an initiative.


So, now, that’s design.


So, we’re glad to share with you a 45-minute jumpstart activity, which will get you and your team motivated, clear, and agile.


We do all the things that go wrong, but we really wanted to focus on designing tools and we’ll help motivate a more beauty to fast.


Now, these are activities that are not, which you normally find right now that in in social contexts.


So these are not about having icebreakers amusing meeting or it’s not necessarily about, you know, having some kind of cocktail hour here on it and Zoom call either. These are just small activities to do. You can actually use an integrated in the way you work with your team on a strategic initiative.


And, if you use these, to you, about 45 minutes, to actually integrate it in the way you think in your code, as you are looking to tackle a strategic initiative.


So, phase one, these are three questions you should ask yourself when you’re facing a new strategic initiative.


This should take you about 15 minutes.


And what we suggest is that when a new strategic initiative comes to you, either in the form of a directive from a supervisor, an e-mail, a mandate, from stakeholder, we asked you to plot some pen and paper.


And we want you to ask these three questions, regards this, as a strategic initiative at hand: Who has the authority to slow up or push out this initiative?


Who has the authority to stop it?


Who has the authority to push it out and promote it?


Who has the authority to slow it down?


You want to know who in your organization has that authority.


It’s a boss. It’s a stakeholder.


Is it another contractor?


Is it another division or team inside your own organization?


You wanna think and lay out, who has that authority, and make sure that this particular question really has two elements.


Who has the authority to slow it up?


Is stored the authority to push it out to support it, to just make it grow and make it successful.


You want to know who, who in your organization or outside the organization, has set up the worry.


What methods will you use to make decisions?


This is a critical question to ask prior to any kickoff of any initiative.


What methods are you going to use? When are you going to make decisions?


We oftentimes work with teams who spend months designing solutions, and new approaches to at the end, when they are actually able to pitch the solution to the higher-level leadership, the leadership team says no.


So, in order to prevent something like that from happening, we want to ask, what methods we use to make decisions? Will your decisions be small? Will they be incremental?


Will they be decided to be a thumbs up, thumbs down, on a Zoom call?


Is there going to be a poll?


Are you going to gain and gather information from clients? Are you going to collaborate with other stakeholders?


But what methods will you use to make the decisions if a teen knows when they’re actually starting and kicking off a strategic initiative?


What’s the initiative?


Who has the ability to start and stop this? And how are we going to make our decisions?


It creates a different context, and it empowers people on the way.


That’s so different than just giving them a strategic initiative and then they start creating solutions.


Remember, this is about creating the context of your culture, and this is about designing.


Those are the pieces of fabric that make up the innovation and peer culture, not changing the people, but changing the environment to make it easier for people to jump in and be successful.


The last question you want to ask yourself is, how do we help each other learn and grow?


How do we gather data, share insights, share successes?


How do we help each other share information, share strategies, and learn and grow?


We’ve found organizations that are quite healthy tend to ask each other, these questions all the time.


Who can stop and start a project? How the decision is going to be made, and how are we going to help each other?


Quite the opposite of organizations who struggle with strategic initiatives, and the way we know the struggles because they start and stop, they start and stop.


People will jump in, and then they’ll just beta of a project, and many times there is no incentive to help each other learn and grow.


But if a strategic initiative is focused on, how do we grow from this? What have we learned from this? And how do we help each other as an organization grow?


Then you start beginning to redesign the collection, the fabric of the organization. So those are the three questions you want to start off with when you are actually working on an initiative.


Now, here’s a powerplay question.


And this is a question that we suggest that all leaders use when working on an initiative, on a scale of 1 to 5. What is the riskiest assumption we’re making about this initiative?


This particular Powerplay question really helps shift the team.


It helps identify some unbiased feelings or unbiased ideas.


We have had organizations who have asked this question and team members will say, well, the riskiest assumption is that we’re wrong.


It just causes the team to take a step back, and question.


What is the actual initiative about? Who are we actually trying to serve? Or who are we actually trying to change? What are we trying to make better, or what are we trying to do more or less?


What are those assumptions?


This powerplay question can be a game changer for you as a leader to use when you’re actually focused on a change initiative or a strategic initiative.


It also helps you understand the climate of your workplace, to understand whether or not people are thinking through the assumptions or whether or not people are just blindly getting the data.


And we have a lot of teams out there who are getting, are done to get the project completed, without really looking at, but was that risky assumption we’re making about this initiative?


Again, the question and the discussion, a dialog, that goes around this particular question, can really pull people together.


It can have the ability to open up early on, people’s doubts, frustrations, there, almost there, the uncertainty of the particular project, to those questions on the table, early on in the project, and not later on, on the project.


So, now, face to Face one is asking those three questions and the RFA question.


Now, phase two is we’re going to go into the initiative itself.


So, the first phase should take about 15 minutes, and the second phase should take about another 10 or 15 minutes, as well.


So, the first thing is leverage interconnection.


And, by that is, know, place all the projects that you’re working on, to see if there’s anything you can leverage from another project.


Could it be a person, a software, an idea that may not have worked in one challenge, couldn’t almost always work in another challenge.


Is there something that we can leverage, someone’s expertise?


Someone’s research that was done on another project, versus having everybody starting from scratch, so, let’s see what we can leverage together, as a team, for this particular initiative.


Deduct versus. Add.


Many times, and that again, this is based on our research, on working with our clients, and would love to know, this is what you see as well, is that teens tend to feel or believe that in order to create a new strategic initiative, they need to add something.


Can your product at any servers, add a new way of connecting with a customer, any way to onboard an employee?


What we say is, what if you deduct something from your thinking or your process or your system?


Many times, our systems are overloaded with step-by-step processes that oftentimes to add something may feel like you’re improving it, but deducting could actually have a bigger impact on that particular process or procedure.


So deduct versus at, again, this question ended up itself could be quite powerful for your team.


So, not only have you determined, is there something we can leverage from another project that’s occurred in this organization.


Is there, you know, content or research or are finding that we can leverage, then should we be deducting?


Or should we be adding to our current state?


deduction versus add?


A great, great, different approach to looking at, how should we move forward?


And then, we also suggest to identify two feedback loops.


How often are you going to share information?


How are you going to get feedback for your success, towards the completion of the strategic initiative?


Are you, are you going to meet quarterly weekly? Are things going to be shared in a project management system? How will you get feedback? Do you need feedback from two people on the team, or three people on the team?


Oftentimes, we work with teams who actually don’t know who can stop a project, and they don’t know how the decision necessarily is going to be made, and they don’t get feedback until the end of the project.


Our goal is to give feedback as often as frequently as possible, so that people can shift and be agile.


The faster that they gain feedback, the more likely they are to take a step back, to take a step forward.


But oftentimes, we find our organizations have maybe one feedback loop, and many times, most towards the end, when you’re getting ready to present or share with the larger team, your ideas are your solution in there. So we say, identify two feedback loops. But I would charge all of us to maybe identify 3 or 4 feedback loops.


Again, the more we can gain feedback from each other, know how we’re going to leverage what we have.


Supporting each other uses system to grow the faster we will.


So, those are your 2 first 2 stages, which should take you about 30 minutes.


You’re going to ask the three questions, the power play question.


Then you’re going to look at the initiative to really understand the initiative, to see how you can create feedback loops, how you can leverage current research, or current projects or initiatives, and more importantly, should we deduct, or should we add to this project.


So those first two steps should take, as I said, about 30 minutes, they could take a little less.


And the more and more you use these questions over and over, it becomes the culture and the fabric of how you actually jumpstart initiatives.


It becomes a great framework, so that people know what to bring to the table.


one unit shift starts, it helps some questioned their biases from the get-go, and it helps them understand and learn what other initiatives are actually going on in the organization so that they can determine what can be leveraged or not.


So then, the third phase is your initial kickoff.


Now, I didn’t know about any of you, but I worked in large organizations, large, slow organizations, small nimble organizations. And when we go on a project, we just kicked off, we didn’t have phase 1 or 2.


We just took the problem, pulled a team together, talk to the team about what we thought the problem was.


There we go.


We, we took off and started creating solutions, sticky notes everywhere, e-mails, going back, and for the project management plan, created.


But the first two steps never occurred.


So, phase three is when you actually initially, kickoff your initiative.


So, we want to agree on the initiative, who, what, where, what.


Now, this does rather trivial in some ways, but it is a game changer because it also allows everybody on the team to really understand What did the initiative come from?


Who initiated it? Why is it important? Why is it important now?


Where is it going?


When does it need to happen?


You can even add the: How: How are we to, to move forward?


agreeing on the initiative, on the who, what, where when, and how, really also helps the team come together in a very different way.


I’ve been on another; teams led a number of teams and facilitated a number of teams.


Will actually, when the initial kickoff occurred on a project or initiative, when they walked away, and we went back to them as individuals, 8% at the time. They all had different definition of what they thought the initiative was all about.


So non con, although it’s something you do want to prevent.


You want to ideate; you want to create ideas around the problem.


Now, I want to take a step back and make sure that everyone on the call is hearing me.


I’m not asking you to brainstorm solutions.


I’m asking you to ideate, I’m asking you to come up with ideas, ideas that you saw, a little like, challenge, ideas that inspired you from another organization, maybe even ideas that you see from your competitors.


You want to start pulling together ideas that are related to the strategic initiative.


That may or may not be the right solution, but you want to start thinking, and you want to start putting the dots together before you actually brainstorm solutions.


Now let’s face it, we’ve all been on teams where we get called in.


Big strategic initiative needs to happen, we’ve given our timeline and we ran to the races, and we start brainstorming solutions.


But if you recall, we might be brainstorming solutions for the wrong charge.


So ideation at least helps cover insights to ID helps you identify new ideas and to uncover widens ideas were actually designed by your competitors.


Or why this idea is so important are even why this idea is taking Getting so much uptake and attention from your customers, so you want to IDA and you want to understand the who, what, where, when, of the particular initiative.


So here, you want to gain traction, and gather lots of ideas, before creating solutions.


So we have organizations, who have an ideation board, and all it is, is different colored sticky notes for each color represents a particular initiative, and they just write an idea, and stick it on the board.


The more ideas you have, the more likely you’ll be able to innovate in a faster way, when you’re actually creating the solutions.


So ideation before brainstorming before solution design.


Again, many organizations go straight to solution design.


The ideation is critical. The world is moving very fast. And there’s lots of ways to acquire and gather ideas.


So we suggest that you do everything from social listening.


What are people saying on LinkedIn? What are they saying on Facebook? What are the same, not Twitter?


What ideas are out there, they’re just catchy and they’re becoming biased.


Do desktop research, do searches online. Do you 10, 15-minute searches on a particular issue or challenge?


Interview people.


Talk to people.


Understand what their likes and dislikes are, and what are the ideas that excite people most?


Lots of different ways to gather ideas before creating your solution.


Another thing to consider when you’re actually kicking up an initiative is to understand how much asynchronously and synchronously, you’re going to work together.


Is there a time where you’re always meeting and meet to have a meeting?


Are there times where you meet? People, go, do work? Place it on a whiteboard, or place it on some other type of medium, and then the ideas keep moving forward.


What we’re learning from organizations is they are in meetings all the time.


Sometimes they have meetings to have meetings, are they rediscovers, actually some that was discussed a few meetings ago.


So celebrating now, what you want your team to do asynchronously versus synchronously is going to be great as you move forward on your strategic initiative.


Then you brainstorm.


So you brainstorm ideas after you look at ideation after you give people some time to work alone.


one of the other things I would say is that there’s a lot of new literature coming out saying that you want to give people some time and space after ideas come to the table, because sometimes, it’s not that easy to brainstorm right now.


So people don’t get the great brainstorming idea until they’re driving home from work, or they’re in the shower, or they’re baking cookies of ideas and brainstorm, thoughts come to people in very different ways, shapes, and forms. So having that balance between what is synchronous and asynchronous is perfect.


And then you would go into brainstorming types of activities.


OK, so Phase four.


Test your assumptions throughout the entire process.


Testing your assumptions is as, it’s easy, is asking, Is this the right question? Are we meeting the right needs?


Are we addressing the right challenges? There are clients, or the strategic initiative is actually focus on.


You want to test your assumptions all the time, and not test them only at the end of the process, because you want, Again, you’re just building in agility, agility, and you’re thinking, Agility in your process.


You’ve gone from phase one to Ryan your three questions in your power play question.


Phase two to understanding what you can leverage inside an organization to Phase three, what are the actual steps you take the who, what, where, when the ideation, how you’re gonna work synchronously and asynchronously.


And then, Phase four just test your assumptions very, very quickly you want to do that throughout the entire process and, yes, even at the very end, you always want to become curious and make sure that you’re asking yourself where we can place it. Do we just add another step and called it something else?


Is this really going to meet our need and we want to be able to test the assumption before we actually bring the initiative’s strategic initiative to buy.


And then we want to launch your design, redesign, and design. again.


The loop can happen very fast. For us, it happens within 50 minutes.


You just break your project up.


You use our Downloads that we shared with you.


When you actually create the questions, you’re going to ask yourself, the assumptions that the team needs to ask, understanding how you’re going to support each other, the who, what we’re aware of a project, understanding what you want to add, or Delete, and then just iterate and design fast.


I will tell you that this particular process, for organizations to start at the beginning, takes roughly around 45 minutes.


Those are organizations that uses framework over and over again, tend to actually complete this in about 20 minutes. So it’s a quick way to just started an initiative, get into line, get people refocus.


Get the questions of biases answered early on and move forward quickly.


So, now, our last challenge that we would share with you is that we have found most organizations, when they’re dealing with strategic initiatives, they move from framing their meetings into little mini workshops. So, they take each of those phase’s inquiry into a little mini workshop.


And so, actually having a meeting with an agenda, and because by the time that initiative actually gets its full focus and asked the questions that need to be answered in a deep way.


It’s, too, it takes too long. But, when I move the framework or my mindset of moving my weekly meetings with my team and too little mini workshops, we tend to move much faster.


It feels like we’re just moving towards a goal in a very quick and agile way.


So now, let’s jump start here. Initiatives of a high-level motivation and energy and get going.


So, we’d love to answer any questions that you might have about any of the phases that we talked about. Allergan start your initiatives, or what steps you can take to actually bring energy and motivation back to your team.


So, Sarah, are there any questions that people have popped in into the question box?


Yes. So, we have some time. Now, we have about 10 minutes to answer any questions that you have. So, if you do have a question, please type it into the questions box so that we’ll be able to get an answer for you today.


Our first question that we had come through is, what has been your experience in just starting the alignment process? What step is the most critical?


So, the step that has been most critical and the alignment has been, ah, I believe, this phase one, the phase one step, understanding the initiative, uh, has been most critical habit. Well, let me take a step back. I would say that there’s two things I found that really increases alignment very quickly. The assumptions that are being made.


We have, we have seen teams derail themselves because one team members making one type of assumption and another team members making another type of assumption and they’re both working diligently on their particular part of the project.


So, that assumption question, I think, is pretty powerful.


I also think the question of whether we should add or deduct.


We have found most teams. They’ve just been in the process of batting. They’re constantly adding new content. You blog, new technology, new everything in, in hopes of actually attracting new clients, or building a new base, or engaging employees differently.


And while we put the question back on the table, maybe you’re adding too much, which would create misalignment. What about deduction? What if what if we deducted something?


But if we understand our clients in a way and they don’t need all the complexity, we think those two particular parts of the phases really help with the re-alignment process.


Great, and secondly, I’d like to know how do you keep leadership engaged and not shift their priorities and trip up your moment?


Speaking to my heart, was definitely one of the key parts of the presentation really had to do with the decision makers who can derail a project, who can actually push a project forward.


We have created a little system when we actually design solutions with companies, where we talk to the leaders, talk to the decision makers, ask them how they want the decisions to be made, and then we simply makeup observers of the process so that they feel that they can see the progression of the process.


But they were very clear of how that decision was going to be made.


There’s nothing that’s more painful than to watch a team actually design a solution and have a senior leader come in and say, that’s not going to work.


We want to know, from the get-go, how they define what’s going to work and what’s not going to work.


We want to know who’s going to push the initiative forward and who’s going to hook, who has the ability to stop it, and what it?


Why would they stop it?


If you have those discussions early on, it does help everyone gain momentum and gain alignment, but it also puts the senior leadership in a very different position or very different place.


We have found that teams often do not ask those questions, and they can get a team derailed pretty quickly on a particular project so you can ask those questions early on.


We do have a process that more than happy to share it with people, they’d like to reach out where we do A subject matter expert and a business matter expert interview prior to the kickoff of initiative. And one of the experts that we always interview is going to be the senior leader.


And one of the questions is, you know, what would stop this project from moving forward?


What would you initiate you adding money to make this initiative go forward?


And it’s just very interesting to see their thinking and their decision-making process.


So you want your team to have a decision making process, but you want to understand how the leader is going to have a decision making process to make sure that.


Great. And then we had another question here from Gail and Gail. I’d like to know, what do you think about the Crawford slip as a decision-making process to engage all stakeholders?


I use that, and I’ve seen that.


I’ve used to, I believe, more than once or twice, I think it’s good, I think that a process that can be used to engage people early on, to increase psychological safety and to ensure that people’s voices are heard.


I think, regardless of the framework that you use for us to kickstart initiative. It’s when do you use it? And you would probably use it in the first initial phases.


one of the passions that we have around this particular topic for this webinar is because we’ve seen a lot of organizations who just go straight into the kickoff of the initiative without doing due diligence behind.


That’s why we created the phases, so I think that process, if it works for the organization, and it reflects the culture of the organization, go for it. Do it, use it.


Great, and Alex asks, how can I quickly move my team in action?


So a couple of things.




Do you want them moving to action? So what we know from behavior and motivation is that, there is an intention action gap that’s going on.


That a lot of teams have the good intention of actually doing something, but the action is not quite there.


So, we spend a lot of time with organizations designing behavioral elements. So, what?


Alex, what I mean by that, is that you want to create the context of how people make decisions and gather information easy for them.


If it’s easy for them to do, if it’s easy, it’s like a click.


If it’s, uh, you know, some information you want to give them, and they just need to click once and they have access to the information, they’re more likely to take that action.


So my suggestion is scope, the project, or the initiative the team is working on.


Understand how the team is, motivated. Ask them some of these questions that we asked in the webinar. Do they feel like they’re overloaded? Have a lot of band-aid initiatives, what are some of their assumptions?


Put those on the table to address them. and then come up with a framework that will allow people to get access to content and information and engage in a quick and easy way.


We know people love things like Netflix, and, you know, difficult social media channels, and there’s just, like, a lot of things out there, that we see human behavior just, almost like they’re attracted to it, and they’re attracted to, because it’s easy.


It’s it, they don’t, you’re not changing the behavior. You’re changing the context of the behavior.


So, what I would say is, look at your environment and identify where in your environment, you can make some quick, easy changes in the context of your environment, to make their actions easier, that is the best and fastest way, and it will stick.


And then we have a question here from Michael. And Michael asks, Is there a good timeline definition for ideation?


Well, we’ve seen organizations, IE eight, like within 10 minutes, within a session. It really has to do with scoping out the complexity of the initiative.


But I would say our experience has been a couple of things. We have a couple of numbers that we use. For example, the best team size is around seven.


We have people ID within like a 48, 72-hour period of time, where, after we use a white board, we have an interactive ideation board.


And we have an interactive design board, so that those ideas are put on the board, and their words in many different formats. Visuals, audio, video, an article they read, a past experience they’ve had. But we usually have it open for about three days or so, and that has been a pretty good, sweet spot, because people will go back, and, like, oh, I saw something else.


I saw something else, the key that I would, would add, the caveat I would add to this, is that, many times, we live our ideation, minds open, after the initiative has been launched, because those ideas will come.


They’ll be helpful for another initiative. It goes back to leveraging.


So, like, can I leverage ideas from one project to another.


But for ideation.


I think three days has been some of our sweet spot of the pact team, to come back and shared some information.


And rather than happy to, to share our ideation, boring thing, if people would like to, to get in touch.


one question here, from Amy and Amy says, people are overwhelmed and are tired of screen time. Do you have any suggestions?


Yes. I’m with you. I am retired as green tend to.


So, a couple of things to consider is that what ended up happening is, when we went from face-to-face to virtual, basically, people went from one medium to another.


And they were, they did not design the contexts of how they interact with people.


So, for instance, we’ve worked with teams, and, you know, they’ve told us things like We have.


Icebreakers. Well, you know, I get icebreakers and ice Cream, Richard, right?


But, oftentimes, they get tiring, it feels like it’s not even, it’s really not the best way to create connection and collaboration.


So what I would say is, getting very clear how you want to use your technology tool, Your technology tools should be used to leverage group collaboration, group dynamics. And sometimes some of the tech tools out there don’t allow, or what that, like, they might break you up into groups, and they might create a white space. But is that true? collaboration? Is that sustainable?


one of the other things is we do suggest that people have certain rituals where they have no screen time.


For some organizations, it’s possible, for some organizations, they have no meetings on certain days. For other organizations, it’s not quite possible.


So, we always ask a leader, can there be a time when the day, like at noon, we’ll know e-mails were really going to be set or, you don’t have to read your e-mails during that timeframe.


So, we’re really bound right now to our phones and our laptops and in our Zoom meetings, and it’s just an overload. And people do need to take a break from that.


The other thing you want to look at is the type of engagement do you want to have using technology.


There are things out there that are a good design that helps engage, engage people to get them to the end result.


But death by PowerPoint, tons of meetings where you might not see people’s faces, or maybe you see people’s faces, that’s going to be very much overwhelming. People are just kind of, based out.


We did read a recent study that said that when people went to virtual, even working from home, people are saying that they work more hours now than they did when they were in the office, or they have more meetings now, virtually, than they did when they have.


You had them when they were in the office.


And because of that, we’re asking them to take a step back and really say how they can design, how they interact. When do you really need to have a meeting, versus the seven-minute huddle?


You know, when do you really need to have an ideation session versus a strict agenda?


one size doesn’t fit all, know, when you’re going to have asynchronous work and synchronous work. Putting those parameters just does cause some relief for people and organizations. And we’re seeing that there’s just need a framework or design process to help them do that.


Great, and the final question that we will answer today is from Matthew. And Matthew says, Is this Structure worth the effort?


I knew somebody would say that. Yes, I really appreciate the question. I do get asking, you, know, as it were.


Yeah, They’re worth the effort and the time.


And I say yes, only because I have found, when there’s not a lot of clarity, alignment suffers when the alignment suppers speed and agility suffers.


But more importantly, we think that the effort is important, because you will find your own version of something. So like the power question, you might change that power question, to meet your culture, your need. You’re going to find your little hacks or your little way of doing something or creating.


A structure for identifying every initiative, and who has buy in, and who can stop it and who can started, and the more and more you do with the faster and faster you go, it’s I would say, yes, it’s very well worth it. Because the numbers that we’re seeing right now is that there’s so much loss opportunity.


when an initiative goes wrong.


There’s a lot of lost money, energy, and peoples, time and commitment is starting to wane.


So we can put some structure that has some agility, has some ability to get buy in, and, you know, have the ability to actually become something that’s your own. I say, yes, it’s well worth it.


Great, and that will then bring us here to the end of today’s session that today’s Webinar was sponsored by Strategies by Design Group. Strategies by Design Group applies innovative techniques and approaches to achieve immediate engagement and growth to enhance the connection between behavior design and human centric design.


If you’re interested in learning more about Judith was speaking on, stay make sure to go to WWW dot strategies by design group dot com for more information and that will bring us here then to the end of today’s session. Thank you so much for your time today doing it.


Thank you.


I think we lost your audio there, dude, and have a good afternoon. Thank you again, everyone.


Yes, thank you all for participating in today’s webinar, happy training.

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