In the hectic pace of the knowledge economy, two things have become critical to every organization ‚ s success. The first is knowledge. The second is time. As a
workplace learning and performance (WLP)
professional, your role is to continuously improve the knowledge, skills, and performance of the people you serve. You ‚ ve felt today ‚ s hectic,
When you finish this book, you ‚ ll have seen how to
understand the basics of the executive language of finance
search for and uncover hidden potential for value
leverage your most current business context
get your point across quickly in today ‚ s fast-paced world.
How can you communicate effectively in 30 seconds or less? Successful
This book will show you how to quickly and effectively communicate your financial value. Value communication is defined as clearly and succinctly describing the value of your WLP interventions in terms of the financial measures that your audience is judged by. For example, if your chief financial officer is judged on a financial measure such as return-on-assets, showing how your WLP intervention has improved return on assets is a powerful way to gain approval and support.
Figure I-1: The flywheel of the financial value process.
The groundbreaking book
Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap
and Others Don ‚ t
(Collins, 2001) describes building phenomenal business momentum as a process of turning a flywheel to generate power. The first few turns of the flywheel can seem slow and arduous, but the more turns that are completed, the faster the flywheel
starts with understanding what value is from your audience ‚ s perspective and how that value maps to your goals. Each layer of an organization perceives value differently. The definition of what will be valued and how much value there should be starts at the top where performance is measured in
As responsibilities move down through an organization, financial metrics eventually become the required performance metrics of the individual
Not every reader will feel excited at the thought of using finance to communicate value. Some of you may even feel as if you ‚ ve just been
Every organization has four basic layers of management and individual contribution. Even though the basic language is finance, specific financial measures are transformed as they move through these layers. This means that the way your value is perceived shifts, as well. In chapter 2 ( ‚“Decoding Value ‚½), you ‚ ll look at step 1 of the financial value process: defining your audience. You ‚ ll examine these common layers, what the expectations and
It ‚ s great to have a better understanding of how value must be translated to different levels of your audience, but that ‚ s not enough to gain true creditability. You have to know what issues your unique organization is grappling with right now, so that you can speak to real needs. In the financial value process, step 2 is research financial information. But, the first time through the flywheel, it ‚ s
Step 3 of the financial value process is to identify financial imperatives. This step is covered in chapter 4 ( ‚“Profit ‚½), chapter 5 ( ‚“Position ‚½), and chapter 6 ( ‚“Cash ‚½). You ‚ ll walk through
Now, you are in the position to go back and address step 2 of the financial value process, researching financial information. In chapter 7 ( ‚“Business Intelligence:
At this point, you ‚ ll have learned a great deal. You ‚ ll know what ‚ s
Step 4 of the financial value process is to identify an intervention. Selecting the appropriate performance or learning intervention is an important step in creating value. But wait! Before you do the work of delivering your intervention, you need to perform step 5 of the financial value process: clarify perceptions. As a WLP professional, there is a great deal that you do every day that is taken for granted. Other things that you do would delight your audience if they only knew about them! You don ‚ t want to confuse the two situations because each dramatically affects your ability to be
Now that you ‚ ve dealt with the conscious and unconscious assumptions about what you do or are offering to do, you still need to relate your value to what ‚ s happening right now with your audience. Chapter 9 ( ‚“The Financial Imperatives Scorecard ‚½) will show you how to plan and track your value so that you ‚ ll know what types of numbers you are delivering and can show how much value you bring to your audiences ‚ financial value measurements. This chapter helps you complete step 6 of the financial value process: develop scorecard.
Step 7 in the financial value process is to deliver the intervention. This is a step that many WLP professionals are very comfortable in performing. It is Step 8 of the financial value process, evaluating results, that is often missing when communicating financial value. It ‚ s possible to make a claim that you will provide a certain amount of value within a specific timeframe, but eventually you have to
Anyone can get numbers, but if you can ‚ t communicate your value quickly, you ‚ ll lose your chance to have your executives understand how valuable you are. Part Three, ‚“Communicating Value, ‚½ describes how to put all the information you have gathered into an accessible,
Every audience you communicate with has its own hectic workload of tasks to manage. Step 9 of the financial value process is to plan quarterly context. This step is covered in chapter 11 ( ‚“Building Your Context Plan ‚½). This chapter shows how to predict what
In chapter 13 ( ‚“Creating Financial Value Statements ‚½), you take all of your planning and pull it together into great communication! The average executive gives you 30 seconds or less to get your point across. Creating statements is the goal of step 11 of the financial value process. This chapter introduces a quick, concise format to communicate your value and shows you how to polish just what you ‚ ll say in your 30 seconds. You ‚ ll get hints on different ways to use your financial value statements. The way you look at communicating value will never be the same again.
Finally! All that preparation is going to pay off. Step 12 is communicate and refine. Chapter 14 ( ‚“Putting It All Together ‚½) refines all the exercises, examples, and forms that you ‚ ll have worked so hard to complete throughout this book. You ‚ ll see a summary of how the financial value process can work to generate momentum and power in your value communication. And, because your insights will have grown as you ‚ ve worked through the book, you ‚ ll have a chance to review your questions, data, and statements so that your value will really
But, if executives believe you should be able to do these things now, they ‚ ll expect even more in the future. Executives need professionals who not only know what is valuable and when it ‚ s valuable, they need people who can help them move faster and faster to stay ahead of their competition and meet the needs of the people they serve. For these goals, hope is not a strategy. In chapter 15 ( ‚“Conclusion: The Courage to Begin ‚½), you ‚ ll look again at the difference between the WLP professional ‚ s focus on the goal of the job and your executive ‚ s focus on the goal behind the job. In the end, the difference between the two is the courage to lead others from an understanding of the numbers to an understanding of the power of workplace learning and performance.
Perhaps this seems like a great deal of work. Well, it is. After all, the knowledge and skill of an organization ‚ s people is one of the most important competitive advantages in today ‚ s global
It may seem unreasonable to have to work this much to get your value across in 30 seconds or less, but remember: You only have one chance to make a good first