In a scenario in which management and front line employees remain distant to each other, there’s an increasing gap present in the ability to drive a business. In short, numerous studies, various research programs, and reports teach that a top-down strategy within the business environment is not a quality substitute for engaging employees and managers who operate the business at the customer-point. If this is the case, why is it still happening so often?
It’s a Tough Road
One of the reasons why so many businesses fail to take on this type of advice, of working in a front-line centered element, is that, for most situations, it is a game of staying at the top. The problem is, in a capitalism drive society, many businesses fail and even those that do not only remain at the top of their game for a short period of time. In a 2006 study conducted by John Stubbart and Michael Knight, the two looked at various firms and their history. The study found that of the six million firms included, only 10 percent were still in existence at their 40th anniversary. That study was done in 2006.
In many cases, businesses miss growth opportunities because they fail to engage the front-line worker and the managers on the scene. In fact, innovation is often unpredictable and based on unplanned connections within a business. In other words, some of the best people for finding these growth opportunities are those who work with customers on a regular basis, not top of the line (and often out of touch) management.
Think Like the Military
The U.S. military is a perfect example. While it may look like a top-down management style, it is just the opposite. Leadership and management within the military is dependent on a bottom-up design – the communication and learning within the troops comes from those men on the front lines, not those sitting in the offices. While the organizational chart displays a very complex method of managing these individuals, it is really the people on the ground that makes the biggest difference in the decision making and running of the organization.
In fact, in today’s military scenario, front line troops are given cyber technology to allow them to remain in constant communication with their leaders. These individuals have access to the top levels within the military. That is something that is not often easy to see within today’s management structure.
What does this mean for a business? It means CEOs need to create more points of interaction with their front-line workers. This type of leadership not only helps to grow a business, but it can also help to sustain it well past that 40-year anniversary so many do not make it to.
To build your team of front line employees, you need pre-screened and quality employees who can get the job done. Advance Staffing Solutions in the Toledo, Ohio and Michigan regions are there to help.