Enrich and Accelerate ADKAR with Role Mapping


✅ It provides a practical – not a theoretical – approach to change management and shows the exact actions that need to be done.
✅ It’s a ready-made and tested recipe.
✅ It comes with lots of training and support.


➡  It is challenging to apply this model for large-scale change in organizations that have big human resources.
➡  Fails to distinguish between the roles and functions of people involved in change.
➡  The framework points at leaders, HR, and project teams as being change actors, but it is difficult to identify them easily.
➡  Does not take into account the need for the change-makers to address the emotional dimension.

How can Role Mapping enrich and accelerate ADKAR?

Using our proprietary Role Mapping assessment, the ADKAR model can be improved as follows:

Time – In 3 weeks all needed roles for the process will be mapped and you will get a head start for the process

Less work – analysis and role identification is done on your behalf by us (our assessment system)

Scale – Role Mapping can help plot key people in all company sizes, removing any need for manual identification of actors in large organizations

Precise identification – Role mapping scientifically analyzes all the informal networks in a company and identifies the best people to perform change-related tasks.

What precise information will Role Mapping provide?


Remember that knowledge is social. It’s shared between and flows among people who need the skills and who work together.

Role Mapping and CLARC

The CLARC acronym represents the critical roles that managers and supervisors must perform to successfully lead their teams through change. This model is often used together with ADKAR.

But the practice has shown us time and time again that not all managers and supervisors are the right fit to undertake change roles. The success of a change consultant’s work is as good as the results of the change team.

Through Role Mapping we assess the CLARC roles as follows:

Start using Role Mapping for your consultancy process today! 



How Role Mapping can help consultants quickly evaluate an organization


Role Mapping can be performed by using one of the following starting points:

a. An existing data set. Our experts can assess whether the Role Mapping framework can be readily applied to your existing work

b. A new assessment based on a special network survey and (if needed) your own set of questions used in the analytical phase of the project.



The principal consultant was tasked to support and help develop the client company in a period of transition. The client company was a “mature start-up” spun out of a large corporation. The new leaders were picked from different areas of the mother company and given various mandates in the new start-up.

However, there was concern that during this change process the connectedness and social capital aspects were not taken into consideration and the new company would start being productive in a very long time.


The consultant had already conducted her own analysis. During her interactions with 39 senior managers at the client company, the consultant asked each of them to indicate the extent of their worked-related communication with one another.

The consultant arranged that data in the form of a matrix.

She could not:

◾ Identify influentially positioned individuals to make the transition smooth and fast

◾ See gaps, bottlenecks, redundancy, and other properties thought to reduce the robustness of the network as a whole.

This was a result of her inability to gauge everyone’s importance and influence from the raw survey data.

Also, what the structural analysis does not reveal is information about individual roles in the network. She could see the communication is robust, but she couldn’t say whether the responsibility for this is shared equally among all individuals. Typically, it is not.

As such, understanding who plays what role in the organization is a major concern.

Another thing she couldn’t discern is whether the communication network is robust across the boundaries that define departments, business groups, and locations.

JOIN21 provided their Role Mapping services and helped the consultant visualize the leaders in a network.


A nominal list of people who would best act as Coordinator, Gatekeeper, Represent, Consultant, Liaison
An assessment of collaboration and communication diffusion in the company
Extra red flags in the existing network that provided the consultant with a couple of subsequent consultancy projects.




The structural analysis showed that the communication network as a whole was very robust. The positional analysis revealed that 25-30% of the participants shoulder a disproportionate load in brokering communication across key boundaries. The consultant followed up to ensure that their roles are not overly burdensome. One consideration is to understand the content—not just the structure—of their communication. If there were others who have the knowledge and communication skills to perform the same roles, the consultant encouraged that shift.


Several people are not known by and/or do not know a significant percentage of the others. In the case of R&D, where several members are “unknowers” and “unknowns”. The consultant was able to help determine why this was the case and what changes could be implemented to increase everyone’s awareness of everyone else.


The collaboration that the client needed to succeed relied in part on strong communications of people beyond those included in this analysis. The Sales and Legal & IP departments were not represented at all in this analysis while HR was represented by only two people.


Among the possibilities offered by Role Mapping, the consultant considered information-or advice seeking, and a more traditional awareness question. In the former case you ask people who and/or how often they seek out others for information, knowledge, or advice concerning work-related matters. In the latter case you ask people how much they know about the other’s skills, abilities, responsibilities, etc.


The consultant succeded to help the new company transition and become an effective stand-alone organism, as well as managed to alleviate other unseen negative patterns by merely using the Role Mapping assesment on her very own data set.



Get more insights in less time with our assesment tool for change.


Case Study – Why Sharing is Essential to Knowledge-based Organizations

Context of the Case Study

In the context of COVID-19 higher education disruption, along with forced digitalization, a renowned technological University turned to JOIN21 to unveil opportunities for better and more efficient knowledge transfer.

Unseen walls between teaching and research can lead to slow dissemination of information and more efforts needed to achieve academic progress.

In a world where good corporate communication and collaboration are the keys of a knowledge-based economy, this University recognized that current challenges can only be faced when acting like an organization and analyzing what the key improvement areas are.

The Organization Network Analysis (ONA)

The objective and scope of the ONA was to reveal underlying patterns of collaboration in two core activities: teaching and research.

Relationships to be investigated included:

◾ advice-seeking on teaching-related matters

◾ collaboration on research-related activities.

Both relationships were used to map networks of connections among faculty members from 7 departments, both within and across groups, departments, and schools.

JOIN21 focused on identifying four network “signatures” in the teaching- and research-related networks: fragmentation, silos, innovation, and expertise.

General connectedness

JOIN21 examined key relationships—Teaching Information, Co-Teaching, Research Information, and Co-Research—and concluded that the seven groups are very well interconnected, save for some aspects.


All relationships

◾ Construction is the most well-connected

◾ Sustainable planning has only 4 of 12 possible ties

◾ The rest of the departments collaborate with other 7-11 units, but not all.

JOIN21 wanted to understand what leads to this variation and find out how to improve the quality and quantity of communication among all departments.

The “Why?” in the Four Networks

Network 1 – Teaching Information


Our experts compared Teaching Information, Co-Teaching, Research Information, and Co-Research maps and revealed the following differences:

“At a high level, we observe that Sustainable Planning is peripheral in the inter-group network defined by the Teaching Information relationship, with 2 persons acting as gatekeepers.”

Given that there are over 12 members in each group, this a very small number compared to the potential number and thus a very tenuous link between the groups.

ACTION POINT: Create a boundary-spanning link between Transport and the rest of the departments.


Network 2 – Co-Teaching

As with the Teaching Information network, it’s important to understand why Sustainable Planning is so peripheral in this network.

ACTION POINT: We advised the university what group members to bring into the co-teaching relationships that they have forged—either as co-instructors, guest lecturers, teaching assistants, etc.


Network 3 – Research Information


A familiar pattern is beginning to emerge. As with the two networks based on teaching relationships, we observe that six groups are very interconnected while a seventh— Sustainable Planning —is only peripherally so.

ACTION POINT: We suggested implementing a Monthly debrief to ensure that members of other groups obtain a detailed awareness about research conducted by Sustainable Planning, as well as what skills and capabilities its members possess more generally.


Network 4 – Research Collaboration


First, let’s consider what’s similar. Again, we observe that all seven groups for a single, interconnected component.

The density of those connections among them is much lower, however. What puzzled us is why information seeking for Research and knowledge creation is stronger than collaboration.

ACTION POINT: As cross-domain collaboration provides better knowledge creation and, ultimately, a better learning experience for the students (AKA. University customers), we advocated for a less bureaucratic way of doing cross-research.


The ties that bind – strong or frail?

We uncovered that all linkages between pairs of groups in the network are forged by just 1 or 2 people. Is this slowing down communication? What happens in the absence of these people?

We recommended all parties to the intergroup links be made aware of the bridging roles that they play in and find out if they need help or support in maintaining the relationship. We also advised the faculty members to brainstorm how others can play a similar role, as better-positioned people are more productive and help create a healthy work environment.

It is generally the case that relational “bridges” between all groups are anchored by just one to two people in each group. This latter observation represents the biggest opportunity for increasing the density of connections among all groups.

And finally, we saw a lot of peripherals and gave a heads up to Department Heads to dig deeper and see what led to this.


The 3-month notebook

The next step on the list is creating a set of tasks to be implemented by key people in the university over the span of 12 weeks, followed by a remeasurement.

Want to find out if your organization is good at creating knowledge?


JOIN21 Baseline is the first step in using Network Leadership to transform your organization.



Organizational Network Analysis – What is it and why does it matter?

 Figure 1. The striking visual difference between the organization seen as a network and as a hierarchy. 

ONA is a species of social network analysis that focuses on informal networks of employees working within formal work settings. In research and practice, these settings are typically private sector but often university or government work settings are examined, as well.

In the research article written by JOIN21 organizational specialists: Starling Hunter, Jan Taug, and Henrik Bentzen demonstrate the impact of a formal organizational structure on the pattern of informal connections – such as expertise and information-sharing.

Figure 1 visualizes what a typical retail organization looks like as a hierarchy, and as a network.

“Our key finding is that the further apart two people are in the formal structure, meaning the more steps there are between them, the less likely they will connect informally”, says Hunter. “And these could very well be people that should be connecting in order to create innovation and share expertise.”

– Starling Hunter, Ph.D.



This tendency of not connecting in more formal networks was true for networks shaped by information-sharing, both when it happened directly between people in the network as well as in collaboration platforms like Workplace by Facebook.

ONA is a technique for identifying hidden but vital patterns of interaction among workers. It accomplishes this by mapping informal relationships and interactions, with special emphasis given to relationships that span locations, functional silos, hierarchical levels, and socio-cultural differences.

Analyze “Status Quo” and Identify Improvement Areas


Companies use ONA to identify problems with the flow of information, decision making, influence, or energy across their teams and departments so that they can promote innovation and propel organizational effectiveness.

Companies use ONA to solve specific issues and address challenges, including:

Hybrid Work Analysis

Analyze relationship patterns to support a hybrid work strategy. The Hybrid Work Network Analysis is aimed at helping companies that are currently transitioning from Work-from-Home to a hybrid office model.


Analyze achieved connectedness and overall performance of onboarding process. We analyze communication and expertise flows, as well as Aspirational Networks (key people that would make one’s efforts more productive) to discover key areas of improvement.

Engagement and Top Talent Retention

Analyze levels of connectedness that ensure retention.

The core idea behind the ONA is that connectedness and exchange of information and knowledge play a vital role in engagement. To truly understand how your organization works you need to be able to visualize and analyze the ties between employees.


Knowing how your organization really works is of the essence whether you’re restructuring, need to become efficient in a new capacity, or you are merging with another organization and need to understand how to bring people together.

Innovation boost

Organization Network Analysis will show you how to awaken the leader in every employee and how to restructure and break down silos, and connect people, teams and projects for the best possible outcome.

Due Diligence

A typical Due Diligence looks at founders and management, legal matters, financials, employees, and clients. But what if something is missing from the Data Room? Although collaboration is at the heart of modern business processes, very few investors analyze this, and most companies are still finding it hard to manage it. Ensure the success of an investment by uncovering the hidden weaknesses of a company’s collaborative network.

Time Wasters

What if you could uncover a hidden cost within your organization and save millions of wasted dollars? Focus your attention on the hidden costs that go undetected, never show up on the financial reports but impact the bottom line.


Who is ONA for?

Organization network analysis can be done on a wide range of companies, from small organizations with only 20 to 50 employees to large multinational corporations with hundreds of employees.

There are no size restrictions for organizational network analysis, and no one-size-fits-all solutions can be applied to all companies. Each company benefits from insights gained from the data and from visualizing relationships between employees, customers, suppliers, or partners.


Conclusion: Your Network is your Net Worth



A famous “quote” is the dialogue between two managers:

Question: “What happens if we invest a lot of money in our staff and then they leave?”

Reply: “What if we don’t invest in them and they stay?”

The most valuable resource for many companies is their people – their network.

But how many have a plan for how to develop them in a 12-26 months timeline? 

How do companies ensure that the organization and its employees have the opportunities they need to develop and grow? 

◾Are companies aware of how they function internally and of problems that could arise?

Do they even have a way to assess this? 

If people and organizations do not focus on these questions, they will experience a brain drain, an arduous process of attracting top talent as well as a lack of innovation and competitiveness.

More than ever, Organizational Network Analysis is needed to show how your organization works in today’s business landscape, and how it changes over time (for the better or worse). With minimal effort, you get critical insights and competitive advantages on how your organization works as a network of relationships both internally and externally.



JOIN21 Baseline is the first step in using Network Leadership to transform your organization.



5 Eye-Opening insights you need to know from the Oracle 2021 HR Analytics report

1) Data comes from many different sources.

Of the respondents to the Oracle HR Analytics 2021 Report, almost half find data integration fairly or very difficult. The two most difficult areas of HR/people analytics are data integration and data clean up.

Many HR professionals collect data from various applicant tracking, learning and development, and performance management systems. More than one-third of respondents pull data from four or more systems, 9% use data from eight or more systems and 4% rely on 12 or more systems. 

Encouragingly, only 20% find data security fairly or very difficult, presumably because the organization has invested the needed resources in cybersecurity.

The value of HR data can be maximized by combining it with non-HR data. For example, employee engagement data on its own is somewhat interesting but employee engagement’s effect on sales or productivity is very interesting. 

A minority of organizations (21%) have developed the skills to integrate non-HR with HR data often or always. However, nearly half of the organizations have barely started on this sort of integration, with 47% saying they seldom or never integrate non-HR and HR data.



2) Compensation is a key driver of HR analytics. 

It is always best to have insights from a dedicated HR analytics professional, who can run the numbers and get the data that you need. However, if you do not have one on staff, ask some of your compensation pros to be a part of the process.

Compensation consultants are professionals whose area of expertise is compensation plan implementation and design, with the goal of creating the proper incentives for employee behavior. Compensation professionals are typically well-versed in analytics thanks to their experience crunching numbers.

“Compensation experts increasingly need to be working in tandem with other HR experts who can connect the dots with other key areas of the business, such as talent acquisition, performance management, learning and development, and diversity, equity and inclusion.”

The State of HR Analytics 2021

3) Analytics is descriptive, rather than prescriptive or predictive. 

More than two-thirds of organizations practice descriptive analytics, using talent-related data that describes what has happened in the past.



On the other hand, prescriptive analytics allow leaders to gain useful insights, while predictive analytics uses “tools such as statistical models and machine learning to make predictions about the future.”

Currently, 43% of respondents make at least moderate use of prescriptive analytics, while 34% make at least moderate use of predictive analytics. “Only 15% of organizations make high or very high use of predictive analytics,” Oracle researchers noted.


4) Most organizations face hurdles when it comes to people analytics.

When it comes to HR professionals’ abilities to make decisions based on HR analytics data, most see their efforts as lacking. 

“Only 35% of the respondents reported being able to make positive changes at their organizations based on HR-related data. And just 29% rated their efforts as good or very good.”

The State of HR Analytics 2021

This leaves roughly a third who are poor or very poor at making positive changes based on people analytics,” according to the report. Only 36% of respondents agreed or strongly agreed that their people analytics platform delivers actionable insights.


5) Clean data is hard to come by

Among the most challenging elements of people analytics are data integration, cleaning and visualization, according to the report. Nearly half rate their data integration as “fairly difficult” or “very difficult,” while 42% said the same about data clean-up and 38% about analytics visualization.




Is HR data a type of big data? The term big data typically refers to data sets so large and complex that they are difficult to process using traditional statistical methods. To answer that question, Oracle asked respondents about five characteristics typically associated with big data: value, validity, volume, velocity and variety. They discovered that more than half of respondents believe that the HR analytics data they use, do not reflect these characteristics to a high or very-high degree.

Therefore, they concluded HR data—at least these days—must be cleansed and refined to yield meaningful insights. Good HR data analysts do not typically need to be “data miners” or “data scientists,” but they do need to have a clear understanding of how to see patterns and draw insights from the data.

Although a minority of organizations, many companies are skilled and successful at implementing HR analytics. If you plan carefully and use the available resources, your organization can be successful as well.



JOIN21 Baseline is the first step in using Network Leadership to transform your organization.



There is a global crisis in leadership – The great resignation


The ascendant role of energy costs in the future competitiveness of European industry has been a topic of hot debate for many months. As of September 2021, wholesale electricity prices in Germany neared €130/MWh, and in France, they were even higher.

Leadership is currently facing a number of problems that put them globally in a tough position. On top of that, leaders needed to learn how to manage a remote and distributed workforce. Highly skilled people started to leave their companies for better opportunities and remote work became a number one priority for many employees.

Why should leaders care – The Great Resignation


People are resigning from their jobs at a record pace, and this is being called the Great Resignation. This phrase was coined by Anthony Klotz, a professor of management in Texas, who said a wave of resignations is coming as people abandon the workplace.

“The number of people quitting their jobs was at an all-time high in August – 4.3 million people, or 2.9% of the entire workforce.”

US Bureau of Labor Statistics


If the top performers are leaving, then those valuable skills and abilities that they possess might also leave with them. It is a loss to your organization, especially if those departing employees feel that your organization’s leadership is lacking.

It’s becoming increasingly harder for leaders to crack down on the right hybrid work set up, and keep the employees engaged and connected.

“A survey conducted by Gartner revealed that 74% of CFOs at businesses intend to shift some employees to remote work permanently.


Organizations need to become more agile and understand how people work. One of the key insights any organization can get is how their employees, partners and customers work as a network, rather than a formal, hierarchal organization.

In front of you are the network maps that JOIN21 created upon gathering data points from surveys and the organization’s existing communication tools.

Here is a quick explanation: Each dot represents an employee. The arrows between dots show whom each employee consults or sends information to, the line’s thickness representing the frequency. The larger the dot, the larger the volume of requests from other people.

1. Brokers

A broker connects many unrelated parts of the organization and has ties both internally and externally. With their visibility into several groups, brokers can help change efforts by creating balance and mutual understanding. However, without them, knowledge sharing and information between distributed units stop.

2. Silos

A silo is a group of people that is unable to freely communicate with other teams or departments. Communication within a silo is usually vertical, making it difficult or impossible for this group to collaborate with unrelated systems (e.g., merchandisers from different areas).

These isolated groups in the organization are linked only through a few individuals who serve as gatekeepers. It is not uncommon to find entire departments, branches, or even sister companies working as completely isolated silos. This means they are cut off from the information sources, unable to learn from best practices, company expertise, and basically condemned to repeat the mistakes of others. On a company level, it costs money, time and makes the organization less likely to innovate or even keep productivity level competitive.

3. Central employees

Often, people who are important in the formal network are not necessarily important in the real-world network. If you’re trying to roll out a new policy, or implement cultural change, knowing who is influential in your informal communication network is critical.

4. Isolated employees

Isolates are unconnected to the rest of the network and can be easily overlooked. If they have high potential, they are a flight risk and can be easily convinced to take their talent elsewhere.

Scandinavian leadership advantage – Using network insights

No organization is the same and every network will look different and ask for different leadership decisions. But from a value perspective, leaders who understand networks (who are brokers, silos, isolates, etc.) have a unique advantage compared to those who cling to the old, hierarchical power structures. That’s exactly where the Scandinavian leadership model has advantages. Its inclusivity makes for a perfect basis for network leadership.

“The network focus may be intimidating to some leaders because it challenges the traditional, hierarchical view. The truth is that these networks exist whether one sees them or not. If they are invisible, they are hard to influence. Once revealed, however, they unleash a flood of potential. It is in the network of people and their relationships that knowledge lives, trust grows, and work gets done.”
– Jan Taug, CEO at JOIN21

With good algorithms, new technology, and smart collaboration tools, JOIN21 can help leaders gain unique insights and get ahead of the vast majority of companies worldwide.


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Hybrid work didn’t affect productivity – What about other challenges?

The majority of business leaders responding to a study say their organization has performed better against workforce performance and productivity targets over the past 12 months as a result of the adoption of remote and hybrid working.

However, gains in employee productivity and performance may have come at the expense of long-term employee trust.

When asked if their organization was building high levels of trust between workers and direct supervisors, only 30% of business and HR leaders surveyed replied that they were confident in their organization’s ability to build such trust. – PwC

Hybrid workers may also be confronted by challenges related to work-life balance according to the study. Nearly three-quarters (74%) of the business and HR leaders surveyed say they are not fully confident that workload is manageable enough for employees to make full use of their personal time, and burnout may be partially responsible.

Technological advances have been met with a mixed response from workers because what skills are needed in the future is still unclear. Only one in four respondents are confident they can identify the skills they will require in the future.

“Now is the time for leaders to build an environment that supports sustainable productivity. People are integral to the tech equation – leaders need to engage with and listen to their people and be responsive to addressing employee burnout and the desire of people to work for organisations that live up to their purpose, values and culture. This is critical to retaining and motivating employees.”

– Peter Brown, Joint Global People and Organisation Leader, PwC UK

How to avoid the most common hybrid work problems?

In the past two years, we have made a radical change in the way we work, and more and more companies are seriously considering how they can make changes that will last.



Hybrid work environments aren’t a sudden fix for every business. In fact, they’re not a fix at all, but a way to enable employees to be more productive and feel more satisfied in their jobs.

The key is making sure the structure fits the work being done and that managers and workers understand how it will work. That means employees have to understand why the company is moving to a hybrid space, who has immediate responsibility for them, and what they can expect from their manager.

If you implement a hybrid working arrangement without giving it much thought, you can end up with serious communication and collaboration problems. One of the main appeals of hybrid working is the balance between autonomy and collaboration.

Within hybrid teams – those with people working from home as well as those at the office – disagreements and tension can develop. This can lead to a fractured team and an ‘us and them mentality.

Listening to workers is crucial to making sure the hybrid environment functions properly. Holding one-on-one conversations, conducting focus groups, and using HR surveys to solicit feedback is among several methods for satisfying this need.

Employee incentives can also help develop a supportive culture that increases employee commitment.
When people feel appreciated for their hard work, they are more likely to be committed to the organization.

Researcher Marcial Losada has found that among high-performing teams, the expression of positive feedback outweighs that of negative feedback by a ratio of 5.6 to 1. By contrast, low-performing teams have a ratio of .36 to 1.

Takeaway: You can adapt to hybrid work by adapting your attitude

Melanie Collins, the chief people officer at Dropbox, wrote a case study about how the company changed its operations as a result of the pandemic. Before the shift to 100% remote work, only 3% of employees worked at home.

To establish new rules of the road, the Dropbox team took the engineering product lifecycle data, company and financial goals and employee engagement data into consideration.

Based on the data and discussions, Dropbox leaders laid out five guiding principles:

1️⃣ Support the company mission: to design a more enlightened way of working

2️⃣ Provide flexibility and freedom for employees

3️⃣  Preserve human connection while maintaining a level playing field

4️⃣  Support long-term business health

5️⃣  Maintain a learning mindset by being flexible and adaptive

Experts in behavior modification understand that incorporating new habits takes time, especially among large groups of people. As we learn to work virtually, we’re bound to mess up every now and again. Give yourself and your teammate’s permission to make mistakes, so you can learn from them.



JOIN21 Baseline is the first step in using Network Leadership to transform your organization.




Internal communication – Your checklist for a better way to work



JOIN21 Baseline is the first step in using Network Leadership to transform your organization.

The questions in this checklist are designed to help companies initiate a more effective employee listening program and to use the results as a guide as they develop their novel approaches.


When to listen

You should upgrade your listening program when you notice the following signs:

🔲  Strategy and implementation in the post-pandemic phase are off course and leaders are ignoring early warning signs

🔲 Managers express a lack of clarity on what is expected in the new normal

🔲 Employees are suggesting they feel disengaged, disconnected, hopeless and/or lack confidence in leadership

🔲 Increased employee attrition rates

🔲 Employee feedback suggests a widespread shift in morale and/or productivity, with a greater number of employees reporting lower levels of engagement, productivity and/or innovation.


What to measure

If you’re using a listening program to track employee experience, you’ll want to make sure it allows you to measure the following:

🔲 Technology satisfaction. Are your teams equipped with the tools they need to work at their most effective in their evolving work environment?

🔲 Productivity. Are your employees working efficiently in their new environment? Are they working as productively as they were in their old environment?

🔲 Well-being. Do team members feel overwhelmed by the number of tasks they have to accomplish? Do they feel that working from home has improved or worsened their situation, relative to office work?

🔲 Sense of belonging. Do employees feel that they belong – in their environment, team, and in the company more broadly?

🔲 Employee intent to stay. Has the average length of time that your staff members intend to stay with your organization changed?

🔲 Work environment. Are your employees happy with how they work? Are they able to suggest ways of improving things, and do you seriously consider those suggestions?



How to measure

What exactly does a future-proof approach to employee experience measurement look like?

🔲 Listening and measuring continuously

🔲 Continually looking for opportunities to improve your program based on insights gained

🔲 Understanding gaps and drivers in key employee metrics

🔲 Speeding up decision-making and automating actions

🔲 Using the expertise of your customer experience and research and insights teams in your people operations

🔲 Having every employee’s voice heard at crucial points in their journey – such as when changes involving the make-up of teams, policies around flexibility or new technologies are implemented

🔲 Establishing key relationships with senior leaders, particularly the CIO, is key to effective internal communication, especially in the remote setup.


The outcome to aspire to

 Signs that you have a fit-for-purpose listening program in place include:

🔲 Human resources, operations, policies, and investment decisions are based on data

🔲 Employee feedback is actionable, HR teams and people managers can design experiences that better support your employees.

🔲 The people who are involved in future work policies understand the impact that these changes are having on the workforce, as well as culture and workplace experience

🔲 Insights are accessible via a team health dashboard

🔲 You are starting to detect patterns that would allow for greater predictive potential – the coming frontier in employee experience management




The company’s vision, mission, values, and culture need to be communicated effectively through internal communications to create a sense of belonging among employees. Internal communications form an important part of employee engagement as it helps build a positive culture.

At the end of the day, communication is key to employee engagement. When employees feel engaged, they will perform better in their job, thereby creating value for the business.

If you want to learn more about knowledge flows and how to approach any issue through the power of data-driven methods for studying communication within your company take a look at this course.




High performance culture – How to build it and why?


Organizations that master the balancing act of creating a high-performance workplace have a competitive edge over their competitors. High-performance workplaces have been proven to have a direct correlation with business success, enabling employees to work efficiently and effectively, and allowing them to provide more value to clients and customers. In recent years, high-performance culture has moved from being an aspiration or a luxury to being a necessity for businesses looking to stay competitive in the global marketplace. In fact, according to Gallup, leaders who create a high-performance workplace see higher earnings per share than those who don’t.


How to cultivate a high-performance culture?


Research from Deloitte discovered that “87 percent of organizations cite culture as one of their top challenges, and 50 percent call the problem ‘very important.” Yet, they also discovered that “only 12 percent felt their organizations were excellent at effectively driving the desired culture.”



The keys to creating a high-performance culture are strategy, investment, leadership buy-in, and patience.

Strategy: Define the goal of your high-performance culture. For example, perhaps it’s to be No. 1 in your business or to hit certain key metrics. Then develop a plan to achieve the goal by leveraging the people who work for you.

Investment: You must invest time and money into building the right organization, teaming with the right partners, training managers to lead effectively, implementing programs that support employees’ well-being, and more.

Leadership buy-in: Whether you are an entrepreneur starting a new company or an executive hoping to transform an existing business, you won’t succeed without leadership buy-in. If you are hoping to make changes on your own initiative, be prepared for pushback from those who don’t want change.

Patience: If you want to create a high-performance culture, build relationships that are productive over the long term, not just the short term. This requires patience.




High-performance cultures are energizing

High-performance cultures are characterized by a shared sense of purpose and passion for what the organization does. When that is in place, employees feel a real emotional connection to the company. And that makes them more engaged and committed to their work and its success.

High-performance cultures encourage risk-taking


“In today’s industry, in which change happens at a relentless pace, standing still is not an option. You must take a risk at some point.”

– Sanjib Sahoo, CIO for Transport—North America, XPO Logistics


In a high-performance culture, management is comfortable with taking risks. Risk-taking is an essential part of innovation and creativity, and when people feel safe within the culture, they are willing to try new things even when there is a chance they might fail. That innovation can lead to new products, new ways of doing business, or new ways of making customers happier — all of which can help the business grow in ways it hadn’t thought possible before.

High-performance cultures have strong leadership

Leadership in a high-performance culture isn’t about power or authority but about trust, vision, caring, and accountability. In a high-performance culture, leaders earn respect by being trustworthy and having integrity, demonstrating caring through their actions and behaviors, being accountable for their own performance as well as for the performance of others, and showing they have a clear vision for what needs to be done to achieve the company’s goals.




Culture is the soul of a high-performance organization. It’s the value system that guides the decisions and behaviors of all stakeholders involved, including management. If culture is not managed or it’s managed in an ad-hoc manner, it will be inconsistent with the vision of the company and will lead to dissension among employees.

Whatever your culture is today, it might not be the right culture tomorrow. If you want your culture to support your strategy, you need to be ready to reexamine it at least once a year. JOIN21 has the perfect technology for that. If you want to build an inclusive culture and receive feedback on how to strengthen your employee networks look at the Baseline. Ground your future organizational decisions in data and measure the progress, digital fitness, and performance over time.




How to build agile teams in 2021?


Agile teams were often depicted as cross-functional groups that only existed within the realm of software development. However, it’s important to note that agile principles can be applied to many different areas of an organization. While there are limits to how large a team can be, the real challenge rests in deciding how big is too big — and how can an organization effectively overcome this obstacle?

When a team is too large, it becomes difficult to maintain clarity of vision and short feedback loops. To set up an effective agile team, you should start with fewer members, avoid working on too many different things at once, promote communication through all levels of the team, and be aware of situations where communication breaks down over communication channels.

Here are some key agile practices to focus on when building teams:


Focus on desired results


An agile team should be made up of the best talent, working towards a goal that benefits the company and its customers. That’s why you should start by determining your project’s goals and how many hours it will take to make it happen.



A project can be anything from a new website to a new customer service application to building out an app. As you’re figuring out what kind of team you need, here are some questions to ask:

– What is the goal?

– What is your desired outcome?

– How long will it take you to get there?

– Who is on your team?

– Is everyone in-house or do you need to bring in freelancers or contractors?

Figure these things out before you get started so you know how many hours this project will require. Agile teams work best when they have clearly defined goals and everyone knows exactly what their job is. Once you know where you’re going, it’s much easier to build a team that will get there quickly without wasting time or resources.


Talk to the team – Set expectations upfront


Agile teams are self-organized and even though you’re the one choosing the team, you can’t dictate exactly how they go about their work. Once you’ve got the right people on the team, your job is to create a foundation for success.


“Creating a new team is probably the most important thing managers can do, so make sure you get it right. When we created our initial agile teams, I was personally involved with structuring them and selecting team members. It might sound crazy to get so involved in this level of detail, but it is critical that the early teams become true beacons for success.”


– Scott Richardson, chief data officer at Fannie Mae


The first order of business is to set ground rules that will lay a solid foundation for everyone working on this project. This is where you’ll begin setting expectations of what’s required from everyone involved.

This means setting the tone from your first interaction with your team members. You’ll want to make sure they know that change is constant, and their plan will inevitably change as the project progresses. In addition, everyone should understand that they must work as a team – there can be no lone wolves working on their own tasks. They need to be flexible and adaptable to changes that inevitably arise as a project continues – it’s just not possible to map out every step of a project in advance.

Agile teams also need to be comfortable with reporting progress periodically and explaining why something was done or how it was done. Finally, make sure everyone understands that they shouldn’t take failure personally – agile teams don’t succeed because one person succeeds.


Curiosity towards failure


Simply put, people learn more from failure than success. So, if you make sure that your employees feel safe to try new things and to fail (safely) in order to learn, they’ll not only get better at their jobs, but they’ll be happier in their jobs, too.

A great leader will be able to use failure as a teachable moment; the important thing is not to let it tear down the team or the project.

Fail early and often. By working in short sprints with small checkpoints along the way, you can create structures that allow for quick course corrections when a failure arises. This allows you to fail early and often in order to succeed sooner.


Track progress over time


Building agile teams is not that easy to do. You need to keep the team members motivated and working in sync with each other. Set goals and targets for your employees. The goals will not only help the team members to achieve the targets but also help to grow their morale.

You can keep your team engaged in work by building an effective continuous performance management system. This will help you to track the performance of employees from time to time and not once a year. This process keeps the teams engaged and also motivated. The employees will never get disengaged and lose track of work and goals. They will be ready to battle any environment and no matter how uncertain.

Apart from this, the work of agile teams can be facilitated by scheduling regular meetings and workshops. These workout sessions enable the members to understand the roles and responsibilities better, which helps them to contribute more effectively towards achieving the business goals.