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5 Tips for Transitioning from an Engagement Survey to AskYourTeam

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REBLOG: From the good folks at AskYourTeam

While we saw improvements in engagement levels early on, progress had stalled. We wanted to move to something much more outcome-driven; something that tied back to our business strategy. AskYourTeam definitely delivered that.

AskYourTeam is much broader in scope to engagement surveys. It’s self-managed by leaders, and it asks employees to contribute their knowledge and to participate in the solutions. That’s all quite a significant departure from what we’d been doing before, so we put a lot of thought into readying the business for the change. With the help of AskYourTeam’s support team, our transition was positive and straightforward.

Here’s what worked for us:

1. Anchor the change message to your business strategy

What are you trying to achieve, and why will AskYourTeam do the job better than what it’s replacing? You’ll need to clearly articulate the engagement vs broader business performance case. Here’s a great overview.

2. Get the executive team on board first

As soon as possible, show the executive team specifically how AskYourTeam will benefit them. Your leaders will find AskYourTeam much easier to use than a typical engagement survey, so it’s tempting to wow them with the details of the mechanics at this stage. But now’s the time to focus on the why, rather than the how. Keep the messages high-level without getting distracted by the micro-details of how the system works.

3. Let the results speak for themselves

We began rolling out results to leaders in the two weeks following the first survey close date. We spent a little time on the background of why we’d shifted to AskYourTeam, but focused much more on their team’s results and insights. Our leaders were excited about how they could use the insights to drive improvements, and were quickly sold on the new system.

4. Provide leaders with self-sufficiency early

We didn’t want to be the gatekeeper, which HR typically can be with these things. The great thing about AskYourTeam is that you can hand over the reins to leaders straight away. We gave our leaders access to AskYourTeam, supported them with the resources they needed to run their own surveys and retests, and buddied them together to take the survey insights back to their respective teams.

5. Balance self-sufficiency with an organisational perspective

While leaders manage the surveys for their own teams, our People and Leadership team took responsibility for establishing an organisational perspective. We ensured that success was communicated across the business: Progress, opportunities and celebrations identified from our AskYourTeam results are frequently woven into the MD’s business-wide communications.

Within weeks of our first survey, our leaders and our people knew exactly what we were aiming for as a business, and how they lined up to that. Follow these steps and I’m confident you’ll have as easy a transition as we did at Smith&Smith.