20 Questions for Leaders 3/20 Inspiration

From 20 Questions for Leaders:

As an organization gets larger there can be a tendency for the “institution” to dampen the “inspiration.” How do you keep this from happening?

In my opinion Inspiring an organisation is one of the most important tasks for a leader.

I think the best way to do this is: to set clear bold goals, monitor these goals and report progress regularly against them.

These goals need to be: simple to understand;  challenging and aspirational; easy to communicate.

At my current firm, our CEO Kasper Rorsted, did a great job of doing this across the entire organisation of 47,000 staff.

We had 3 clear targets

14%     Ebit margin
3-5%   Organic growth
>10%  Earnings per share

These targets were communicated clearly, including the reasons behind them, progress was measured regularly, and reported back to the entire organisation on Quarterly basis.

There was also a consistency to them too. Kasper always repeated “the targets remain the targets”.

Everyone in the organisation knew the targets, understood why they were important and knew that the targets were not going to be changed.

This helped inspire an entire organisation.

In my opinion, I don’t think it’s the size of an organisation that dampens the inspiration, I think it is the quality of the leader of that organisation.

Good leaders inspire, it’s what they do best.

But often organisations don’t choose good leaders, and that’s where dampened inspiration comes from.

Now you have heard my view what’s you view. How do you inspire your organisation?