When you are in the car travelling long distances (we can dream about life before COVID, right?), what makes you pull in to the McDonalds on the side of the highway when you just passed that truckstop that promised 'best burgers in town'? Is it because the golden arches drew you in? Maybe. Or is it because you know precisely what a cheeseburger from McDonald's will taste like, whether it's the McDonalds in Wagga Wagga or Broome or any in between. Consistency has been the key to so many businesses success, yet for most, it isn't something we ever think about.
The world is getting faster and faster. Businesses are moving in that direction as well – we need to capture and maintain the attention of generations that know that the next TikTok trend is around the corner. But how much effort and capital are we investing in rolling out the next great initiative when there is value in delivering consistency?
Accountability breeds consistency. And vice versa. We ask that our employees be accountable for their deliverables and goals. And they expect the same from business owners. This level of accountability leads to consistency. Consistency in measuring, consistency in performance and consistency in results. The simple act of accountability means that there are a clear time frames and measuring sticks for the business.
Consistency makes you relevant. We often start initiatives like a bullet out of a gun but lose speed as soon as we don't get immediate results. Traction and improvement come from consistently delivering over time. Suppose we continue new initiatives without completing or maintaining them. In that case, your employees and your customers won't be able to trust you to deliver.
Measurement and consistency go hand in hand. You take a picture of a sand dune. You don't know if it's getting bigger, getting smaller moving towards you or moving away. That's the same with judging your business with just one data point. Until you have tried something for a period time, and consistently, how can you decide if its working or not? To accurately track metrics, you need to be consistent in both performance and measurement.
The STAR Workplace Program is an Australasian owned and developed platform that has helped over 900 Australasian businesses measure their workforce's strategic alignment. Reviewing data from 2015 to the end of 2020 – one trend has stood out. Consistency is value. Where a business has completed the program just once, their average strategic alignment score was 68%. In comparison, where a business had conducted the annual program 5 or more times, their results increased to over 85%. How would this level of strategic alignment help your bottom-line?
Strategic alignment of your employees is directly linked to profitability. Think about the most recent P&L you ran for your business. Suppose we assume your business is the average for strategic alignment. In that case, that bottom-line number is your result for your 68% strategic alignment. Multiply that result by 1.25 (85%/68%), and you could see the value that investing in consistency can have to your financial results.
About the author
Sean Murray is Partner at HR Headquarters, specialising in Outsourced HR and Business Improvement for the SME sector. He is a leader in the areas of Human Resources strategy, DiSC personality profiling, Emotional Intelligence and Business Benchmarking to improve organisational capability.