C-Suite Advisory

CEO Buy-In: Your Key to Success

Transforming Your Organization; Getting Your Manager’s and Employees’ Buy-in.

How has the COVID-19 pandemic impacted your business and employees? You may have an astute vision of what you need to do to move your business forward and succeed but do your employees? Whatever your vision of change is, the result depends on engagement and support of your whole team.

How can you boost support in your leadership by your executive team and employees and get enough buy-in from their initiatives and ideas?

Here are valuable tips to help soften that often rocky transition from CEO to the whole organization.

1) Get the buy-in from your executive team for your vision

A powerful leadership team is a high performing accelerator for the CEO and his or her organization. Enrolling your leadership team into your vision is key to gaining support, buy-in and trust.

To validate your vision and shape as the vision of your team you must transfer the ownership of your vision in the hands of your team. Ownership enables trust and responsibility. You need to allow others to change your vision and shape it.

Here are a few proven tips for your success:

  • Create a strong vision independently
  • Present your vision to your team during a joint session
  • Gain team’s feedback and input
  • Adapt where is beneficial team’s impact
  • Present again and keep ongoing presentations as your team’s vision

Once you set a path for the business, your leadership team should hold itself accountable. You will be a contributor and the final authority of significant decisions.

2) When change is necessary, engage impact from middle managers

 The CEO often gets insight mostly from his or her executive team members. To keep ideas innovative and current, the leadership team must inspire middle managers. Studies show that senior executives dismiss good ideas from below far too often, largely because they do not deem it important enough to merit their attention.

If you want your vision to prosper, empower your managers in the middle ranks. People at this level gather valuable acumen from direct contact with customers, suppliers, and colleagues; they can often see when the market is ripe for a certain offering at time.

Encourage your executive team members to engage mid-level managers:

  • Show how new change will benefit middle managers and the whole organization
  • Allow middle managers to voice their ideas and concerns
  • Confirm that the leadership team values their contribution

You and your team must develop positive compliance with a top-down culture and allow them to express their thoughts and opinions.  Mid-level managers who effectively get attention from the leadership team make a real difference in the transaction process to new changes.

3) Get your employees to believe in your vision 

Employee engagement in the CEO buy-in process is vital. Research by Harvard Business School has shown that 70% of all organizational change efforts fail, and one reason for this is CEOs simply do not get enough buy-in, from enough people, for their initiatives and ideas.

Some seasoned CEOs are using an open-door policy communication strategy for engaging employees when anyone is encouraged to come by and share their thoughts. The company’s open-door policy sets the tone for employees’ mission to achieve change when they are all in together.

Employees who are engaged are those who believe in that change. Get people excited!

It is vital to support your people’s belief by demonstrating that change is substantial and highly rewarding. Emphasize that you expect all employees to get on board.

4) Prepare to compromise and act

 Create a rational vision for change for your business. Do not finalize your idea, instead leave some space for modification. Share your idea with employees. Get people to trust and show why. If your new idea will save lots of money, tell them how much and what could be done with those funds instead. Demonstrate how much productivity is gained, salary expense is saved or whatever the case may be. This puts a personal face on the argument.

Present your vision to your company and be ready for critiques. Prepare to compromise!

If people criticize your idea that means they care for the ending result. Collect all comments and brainstorm options for a change to get closer to one the most acceptable version. You may end up with a workable solution that is not totally your vision, but you still produce change and accomplish the desired outcome.

Once you achieve much support from your company – take action. Develop a plan and start implementing. Steer the direction of your company from discussion to execution of the change. Keep all informed focused on the results even if the results  are not yet positive.

 Conclusion

Create a strong vision of the change and its benefits. Make it clear to your people that they are important to the process and they will be part of the win. Do not force your idea. Work together for the benefit of the organization as a whole.

CEOs who bring others along with his or her plan and execution of the collaborative vision almost always win!


Written by Olga Artemenko.

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Olga Artemenko
Olga Artemenko is president and CEO of CCI Pharm. She is a dynamic leader and entrepreneur with more than 20 years of experience in international business dealing with Eastern Europe and Russia with astute negotiation skills in multiple languages. Artemenko holds a BA (Honor of Excellence) and Master in Communication (Cum Laude) from Kyiv National Linguistic University in the Ukraine. In the USA she completed postgraduate studies in economics at Princeton University. Olga Artemenko is an opinion columnist for the CEOWORLD magazine. Follow her on LinkedIn.