CEO Performance Credibility Regained!
The credibility of a CEO of a high tech start up was being challenged. His attempted solutions were well intended; however, they were backfiring on him. He wanted a team environment in which the best collaborative ideas won and action would be quick and responsive to the business needs. Instead, there was a great deal of infighting, non-performance, and finger pointing.
Before calling Steven Feinberg, Inc., the attempted solutions included: The executive reasoned with everyone to look at the big picture, asking them to do what was right for the organization and to focus on the work at hand instead of the divisive interactions. Social events were attempted to break down the interactional barriers. Small wins were celebrated. Improvements were negligible between groups and worse the CEO’s credibility took a big hit. with the organization and the Board.
While all of the executive’s attempted solutions had the right intent and were generally supportive, they were insufficient to move the organization. Using an early version of the Brain-Shift IQ assessment instrument and behavioral science tools for influence, we highlighted simple, direct steps that re-established the choices that needed to be made and the cost of the non-performance.
To the brain, losing real control becomes a status threat which lead to people perceiving him as weak. As followers, our brains tend to move away from needy wounded people – right or wrong, unless you’ve really evolved to higher levels of compassion, the predominant tendency is to look elsewhere for leadership, especially in times of uncertainty and stress.
Together we identified Persuasion strategies designed to reset his command presence and status with the organization. We did this quickly and the response was equally swift. It was always there within him, but it was necessary to tap it and make it the behavioral order of the day. Our brains respond well to people who know what they are speaking about and know how to deliver the message at both a conscious and unconscious level. Establishing frame control in his conversation, the CEO’s status regained the respect that was honestly due him. The CEO established a hierarchy of values that people needed to adhere to and follow. Accountability which had been assumed was now measured and evaluated; incentives were aligned with accountable performance. This resulted in a profitable course of action with people doing what he asked in a timely manner. This renewed the CEO’s hold and demonstrated his ability to influence across the organization.