Most organizations lack a clear, consistent message about what they do. When asked what they do, employees within the same organization will often describe their organization completely differently, and some employees don’t even know how to answer the question at all!
The following activity not only brings this truth to light, it leads to discussion around writing an organizational message that everyone can buy into and easily articulate.
What We Do Training Activity
Start by saying that successful organizations typically have one thing in common: they are clear about what they do and they are able to present what they do in a way that is both consistent and compelling. (Conversely, organizations that try to be all things to all people can struggle with brand recognition.) Ask the group to name organizations they think are good at communicating what they do. What makes them stand out?
Explain that the activity the group is about to do will help them pinpoint what’s important about their organization and agree upon how they’ll talk about their organization going forward.
Divide the training group into small groups of 3-4 people. Have each small group come up with an answer for the following questions:
1. What business are we in?
2. Who do we serve?
3. Why do we exist?
4. What do we create and/or what value does our organization bring?
Then ask each small group to craft a “what we do” statement they feel represents these ideas. (Remind them that the best statements are both concise and compelling.)
Bring the groups back together and have a representative from each group share their group’s “what we do” statement. Capture them all on a flipchart or whiteboard.
Discuss the merits of each; perhaps you can mix and match parts of each to make a better statement. See if you can come to consensus on one statement. For fun, ask everyone to turn to the person next to them and practice saying the statement out lout so that it feels natural and conversational.
Excerpted from the Leader’s Guide for The Clarity Imperative.
Training Resource: In The Clarity Imperative, host John Jenson uses a variety of inspirational stories to introduce viewers to the importance of “consistent messaging”. This program provides a simple but powerful methodology for getting people “on the same page” so that clarity and cohesiveness can emerge.