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Do your teams share the same perspective (perception) of your current state?

Lean Articles

Why is this important? Alignment equals achievement. In other words, having a common understanding of where you are, what you are doing, and what you are hoping to achieve, is what allows your organization to reach its goals. Absent of that, different levels of performance expectations exist leading some to think current state is acceptable, when that may not be the case.

Here’s a simple assessment tool to help you highlight the deviation in perception that may exist in your organization.

How well are your improvement and growth initiatives doing?

In addition to bringing out disparities in understanding, this simple assessment provides an opportunity to have:

  • increased communication between leaders at every organizational level and among their direct reports.
  • teachable moments for leaders. Exponentially increasing the number of people that understand what you want to do, the better the chance you are going to accomplish it. (Brings to mind that old Shampoo commercial about telling 2 friends –
  • leaders evaluate the level of understanding and impetus for change within their people. As Jim Collins said in Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap and… Others Don’t, it is all about having the right people in the right seats on the bus!
  • a macro look at available improvement opportunities.

How to Best Use This Assessment…

Download the document and share it with a small group of managers. Ask each to familiarize themselves with it, rank each entry and then schedule a meeting for all to review/discuss. On the meeting day, roll up your sleeves and dive in. Talk through the assessment asking each person to share their rankings and listen for opportunities and common understandings. After the initial meeting, ask each of the participants to do the same exercise with their direct reports, eventually you can cover the entire hierarchy in your organization. It is a good habit to revisit the exercise annually. Budget time is best, as managers are already reflecting on the past year and looking to the year ahead.

By having an honest conversation on how your organization is doing, you will not only gain shared perspective, but a clear understanding and focus on your aspirations for the future of the organization. Alignment equals achievement!!



  • would like assistance facilitating the conversations. We can provide support virtually or in person.
  • have questions about the assessment criteria, would like more information on levels 2, 3 and 4, or want to dive deeper into the alignment process using Hoshin Kanri or our Lean Management System, we’d love to talk to you.