Dude, I want to write about you. Those were the words coming out of my mouth as I spoke on the phone with a Twitter friend for the first time this weekend. He’s on the brink of launching an organizational culture of content marketing and his story is worth highlighting here.
I love people who lead without a title. Sharing their stories is part of my goal to inspire more leaders.
In the past few years, this particular Twitter friend went from being fired, to temp worker, to “marketing renegade” trying to change the culture of an organization, to… wait for it… dude who just got a huge promotion. BOOM. Drop the mic.
Just kidding. Well, I’m kidding about the mic drop. But the huge promotion story is for real.
And thus begins his journey. Now it’s game time. It’s take the bull by the horns and deliver super big time. Hence the reason he called me for a little help.
I’m not allowed to reveal his name yet but he inspired this post so here’s my advice, not only for him, but also for YOU if you’ve just landed your dream promotion while also having a bit of a “Oh crud, what do I do now?” moment.
Recipe for Successful Social Business Transformation
Of course you have to know WHY you and your business are launching this organizational culture of content marketing. Then, you need to ALIGN these three with your WHY:
Leadership – All the leaders in the company need to buy-in to the vision and they need to own it. They need to able to articulate it in their own words. They also support it, implement it and inject their enthusiasm into it. Most importantly, they lead by example and demonstrate for others what LIVING and ACTING OUT the vision looks like.
Strategy – The strategy is to go all in and involve everyone in the company in content creation and going social. The strategy is to have an army of dangerously effective people making a bigger impact. The strategy is to scale awesome.
Culture – Does your organizational culture support your strategy and vision of success? Do your people clearly understand WHY this is the strategy? Do your employees know HOW to live the strategy and WHAT is expected of them? Is your culture of content inspired or mandated?
You align these three by having a clearly defined vision.
Creating a Clear Vision
Here’s how you create a clear vision. You answer these 6 questions to develop a playbook:
- Why are we doing this?
- How do we behave?
- What do we do?
- How will we succeed?
- What is most important right now?
- Who must do what?
Patrick Lencioni, best selling author and leadership consultant, uses these 6 questions to help leaders layout a vision that they can communicate with clarity to their teams. Exercises and examples designed around these questions are detailed out in Patrick’s latest book, The Advantage (Leaders and CEOs, this is a must read). Your own answers to these 6 questions become your playbook and help shape your compelling vision.
Communicating With Clarity
Once you have a clear vision, you must communicate it clearly and embed it in all parts of your culture. Lencioni makes the point that great leaders over communicate the vision. At least that’s what good leaders do if they want to empower lots of capable leaders within their organization all pursuing the same goal.
For ideas about launching an ALL IN content marketing culture read this.
But besides an epic launch, the toughest part is embedding the vision into your everyday organizational culture. Here are a few ways to accomplish that.
15 Ways to Embed the Vision of Content Marketing Into Your Organizational Culture
- Include everyone in the vision
- Distribute the playbook (your answers to the 6 questions above) to all employees
- Reference the playbook in every single team meeting
- Recognize and award team members successfully living out the vision
- Always share the stories of team members making an impact by their participation
- Write the expectation of content contributor into every person’s job description
- Add the expectation into annual reviews and future hiring criteria
- Add it to the training and on boarding process for every new employee
- Invest in rallying people around the vision with ongoing education
- Continue equipping people to be more effective with less ongoing support
- Set ambitious goals
- Celebrate successes as a team
- Continually look for new creative ways to involve everyone
- This should go without saying but just in case, don’t continuously change the vision and strategy
- And of course, be a warrior of enthusiasm… INSPIRE
Hope that helps! Don’t worry, not-to-be-named-Twitter-friend, I’ll also email you my list of tools for success shortly.
What else would you add to this list of ways to lead a culture of content? What portions mentioned above would you like me to go into more detail about? And feel free to leave a note of encouragement to my Twitter friend. I’m sure he (and anyone else in a similar position reading this post) can use all the support and ideas he can get right now.