In the previous two installments, we tackled the two biggest hurdles to tipping the scales in the favor of a quick decision: cognitive issues and resources. Tonight, I’d like to continue forward with a look at the third hurdle: Motivation. Depending on the size of an organization, the Motivational hurdle can be difficult to tackle. Larger organizations have more complex structures and hierarchies that can lead to complications in the ability to motivate the entire organization. However, to successfully execute a Blue Ocean strategy, everybody must be on-board.
Rather than try to motivate everybody on one’s own, management should focus on the kingpins within the company to help. Kingpins are given this name, due to their ability to influence large numbers of people within an organization. They’re leaders within the organization that can grant or deny access to resources within a given organization. These are the folks that can get players to push that extra shift during crunch time, or push out that last contract singature under the wire. They’re the people that most people like, and that everybody respects.
To accomplish this goal, higher-ups should give these users as much exposure as possible. By placing their achievements and failures on display for the entire organization to see, stakes are raised for all kingpins. After all, nobody wants to be seen as falling behind in the eyes of their peers.
For this to work, the process must be fair, inclusive, and transparent. At the same time, fair process must be implemented across the organization. Basically, all kingpins should be kept in the loop: they should be notified of why they’re being punished or praised and what is expected from these members. So long as these members’ By instating fair process, employees are able to perceive the playing field as level, with equal chances for advancement among other kingpins. And, with this knowledge in hand, can compete to their fullest without fear of being passed over due to politics or brown-nosing within the organization.
The rest of the organization can be motivated via an atomized approach to task assignment. In this regard, tasks get broken down, and employees responsible for only what they’re assigned. In a company like FUNimation, for example this could be seen as taking a “title by title, task by task” approach. Sound engineers will do only sound for the shows they’re assigned, nothing more. Producers will oversee only their titles, nothing more, and so on. By maintaining an atomized approach, employees can gain a sense of real progress and growth that may be lost when members are forced to continually work across projects.
By ensuring that these elements are in place, one can easily place enough pressure to tip the motivational barrier. The ideas of maintaining a fair environment and straight-forward task assignment may seem like common sense. However, in an environment where political extremes are tested daily and resources can be stretched to their limits due to project requirements and simple staff needs.
In our next installment, we’ll cover the final hurdle to Blue Ocean implementation. This will be our final installment before we wrap up the core “Blue Ocean” study (i.e. not exercises and case studies). So, I’d like to thank all of you for joining me in this, and I hope you look forward to these final two installments.