Reinforcing Clarity

Written by Maren Schmidt on March 05, 2019

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WWWD?

In the 90’s the phrase WWJD became popular and it was common to see people wearing bracelets with the WWJD acronym for What Would Jesus Do?

We can borrow an idea from that popular phrase to reinforce clarity in our organization.

What we want our employees, when faced with a problem, is to be able to ask, WWWD?

What Would We Do?

What do people like us do when they are faced with a problem like this?

We want to reinforce clarity of the answers to our six critical questions so those answers become a resilient, yet flexible, infrastructure for our organization.

Each of us is leading a different organization with different answers to those six questions, so we can’t rely on out-of-the-box systems. One size does not fit all.

What are the systems we need?

Lencioni tells us we need human systems that will give our organization “a structure for tying its operations, culture, and management together, even when leaders aren’t around to remind people”.

  • Recruiting and hiring
  • Orientation
  • Performance Management
  • Compensation and Rewards
  • Recognition
  • Firing

Check Mark Recruiting and Hiring

Have you defined for your organization what the right kind of people and the wrong kind of people look like?

You’ll have better success of finding the right people when you have defined behavioral values for your organization.

Check Mark Orientation

The first few days of a new employee’s time in our organization is crucial to reinforcing the answers to the six critical questions.

People want to understand the “why” of their organization, why their organization exists. They want to know why they were selected to join this organization, and how can they be of immediate value.

People want to know how their organization plans on succeeding and how they can contribute to the most important objectives.

Check Mark Performance Management

Lencioni tells us that “the best performance management programs are designed to stimulate the right kinds of conversations around the right topics. That’s all.”

Two questions I’ve used for years to help with those conversations:

  • What went well?
  • What could we do better?

Encourage everyone in your organization to ask those two questions on a regular basis, perhaps daily, and performance management is simplified.

Check Mark Compensation and Rewards

We need to make sure that our compensation programs are simple and easy to understand, and that they are designed to reinforce our organization's behavioral values.

Be sure to make a connection between compensation and rewards with the answers to your six critical questions.

Check Mark Firing

One of the sure-fire ways to diminish moral is to keep a person in your organization who is not a cultural fit.

When we fire those folks who aren’t walking the talk of our organization, we send a clear and strong message about leadership’s commitment to core values.

When we reinforce clarity with our human systems, it helps us hire and retain the right people. 

Reinforcing clarity also helps us quickly recognize the people who don’t fit into our culture, allowing us to help them find an organization that does fit.


Download | Checklist for Reinforcing Clarity


Over the past posts we’ve considered how to give your school organization an advantage by using the following ideas from Patrick Lencioni in his book, The Advantage.


The Advantage by Lencioni

Suggested reading:

The Advantage: Why Organizational Health Trumps Everything Else in Business, pages 152 to 172.

by Patrick Lencioni


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Tags: leadership, school leadership tips, the advantage, Patrick Lencioni, books