Pain Points

"Tell us what hurts"

Based on 25 years of experience helping our clients overcome obstacles and achieve extraordinary results, we’ve compiled a list of the top 11 organizational pain points for which our help is most often asked.

Each symptom can indicate a root cause from one or more levels: tactical leadership ability issues, operational failures in structure and accountability, or organization-wide strategy and planning issues. Have a look at the list and talk to us about the pain you’re feeling. We will partner with you to perform a detailed needs-analysis, identify the root cause of the issue and build the solution best suited to your specific goals.

And yes, there is a reason “accountability” is in so many of our prescriptions. We know that all pain in an organization ultimately comes down to a lack of accountability.

This list is by no means complete. If your pain is not listed here, contact us and let us bring you some relief.

For more information on how Forrest can help alleviate organizational pain, please contact:

Michael Clark
Director, Sales & Marketing
416.925.2967 x262
mclark@forrestandco.com

OPEN / CLOSE
Managerial Ineffectiveness

“Our employees feel …unsafe / not respected / over or under supervised / directionless / unsure who really is their boss.”

LevelRoot CausesRelief
Leadership & Management Ability
  • Bad staffing fills managerial roles with managers incapable of, or who see no value in, managing
  • Even those managers potentially capable and inclined do not know how to lead or manage their team
  • Managers are not sufficiently self-aware to understand the impact they have on those around them
  • Managers do not enforce the requirement for employees to treat each other with respect
  • Managers are not held accountable by their managers
  • Managers are not given a framework in which they can understand the requirements of being both a leader and a manager
Organizational Structure & Role Accountabilities
  • Too many/too few organizational layers
  • Bad structure gives employees managers who do not add value
  • Direct reports given managers two or more levels above them in capability
  • Managers given direct reports at the same or higher level of capability
  • There is a lack of an understanding and application of accountability
Strategy & Planning
  • Leaders have been unable to clearly articulate strategy
  • Implementation is disconnected to strategy
  • Organization doesn’t have sufficient executive talent “bench strength”

OPEN / CLOSE
Unproductive Meetings

“There are too many meetings with too many people with too few constructive outcomes.”

LevelRoot CausesRelief
Leadership & Management Ability
  • Managers do not know how to lead their team, nor how to conduct difficult conversations
  • Managers do not know how to make best use of direct reports
  • Managers do not know how to make decisions or plan effectively
Organizational Structure & Role Accountabilities
  • Decision authority has not been made clear
  • Co-lateral and cross-functional accountabilities and authorities have not been made clear
  • There is a lack of an understanding and application of accountability
  • Managers are not given a framework in which they can understand the requirements of being both a leader and a manager
Strategy & Planning
  • Leaders have been unable to clearly articulate strategy
  • The implementation of strategy has not been properly planned

OPEN / CLOSE
Lack of Trust

“There is too much politics. Unmet expectations have made us suspicious or resentful of each other.”

LevelRoot CausesRelief
Leadership & Management Ability
  • Managers do not know how to lead their team, nor how to conduct difficult conversations
  • Staff are given managers who do not add value
  • Managers don’t understand that it is their accountability to effectively lead their teams
  • Managers are not held accountable by their managers
Organizational Structure & Role Accountabilities
  • There is a lack of an understanding and application of accountability
  • Misapplied role clarity results in peers having an impact on an individual’s compensation through control of inputs needed by that individual
  • Co-lateral and cross-functional accountabilities and authorities have not been made clear
  • Decision authority has not been made clear
Strategy & Planning
  • Poorly defined or implemented strategy opens the door for power struggles

OPEN / CLOSE
Lack of Decision Making

“Decisions take too long.” “We’re stuck in analysis paralysis in a culture of risk aversion and fear of failure.”

LevelRoot CausesRelief
Leadership & Management Ability
  • Managers do not know how to lead nor manage their teams
  • Managers do not know how to make decisions or plan effectively
  • Managers are not given a framework in which they can understand the requirements of being both a leader and a manager
Organizational Structure & Role Accountabilities
  • Too many/too few organizational levels
  • There is a lack of an understanding and application of accountability
  • Co-lateral and cross-functional accountabilities and authorities have not been made clear
  • Operational and tactical decision authority has not been made clear
Strategy & Planning
  • Poorly defined, articulated or implemented strategy does not clarify “top of house” decision authority

OPEN / CLOSE
Resource Squabbles

“We have to fight for the support we need from other departments.”

LevelRoot CausesRelief
Leadership & Management Ability
  • Managers do not know how to lead their team, nor how to conduct difficult conversations
Organizational Structure & Role Accountabilities
  • There is a lack of an understanding and application of accountability
  • Responsibility, as versus accountability, drives cross-functional relationships
  • Staff do not understand their accountability to give their managers their best advice
  • Co-lateral and cross-functional accountabilities and authorities have not been made clear
Strategy & Planning
  • Poor planning has resulted in under-resourcing implementation
  • Poorly defined or implemented strategy opens the door for power struggles

OPEN / CLOSE
Work Overloading

“The work keeps piling up. We don’t know why we’re doing this work, nor what good it’s doing.” “We’re not even sure that it’s our work.”

LevelRoot CausesRelief
Leadership & Management Ability
  • Managers do not know how to lead nor manage their team
  • Staff are given managers who do not add value
  • Managers do not practice continuous improvement
Organizational Structure & Role Accountabilities
  • Too few organizational levels
  • There is a lack of an understanding and application of accountability
  • Managers are not given a framework in which they can understand the requirements of being both a leader and a manager
  • Co-lateral and cross-functional accountabilities and authorities have not been made clear
Strategy & Planning
  • Poorly articulated strategy results in confusion for priority setting
  • A lack of planning results in poorly defined criteria against which innovations are judged
  • Innovations are disconnected from strategy
  • Lack of continuous improvement to reduce outdated processes

OPEN / CLOSE
Ineffective Policies

“Our policies and processes are getting in the way of getting the job done.”

LevelRoot CausesRelief
Leadership & Management Ability
  • Managers do not know how to lead nor manage their team
  • Staff are given managers who do not add value
  • Managers are not given a framework in which they can understand the requirements of being both a leader and a manager
  • Managers rely too much on policies as versus their own judgment and discretion
Organizational Structure & Role Accountabilities
  • Too many/too few organizational levels.
  • There is a lack of an understanding and application of accountability
  • Bad management practices take away from managerial accountability
  • Co-lateral and cross-functional accountabilities and authorities have not been made clear
Strategy & Planning
  • A lack of adequate strategy articulation and planning results in ineffective policies and procedures
  • Overly bureaucratic environment places too much reliance on policy and not enough on accountability
  • A lack of planning has led to a lack of control mechanisms for policies
  • A fear of accountability leads to the dictatorship of policy

OPEN / CLOSE
Lack of Innovation

“There is a lack of innovation and creativity in our organization. Opportunities to improve productivity are lost. We seem hidebound.”

LevelRoot CausesRelief
Leadership & Management Ability
  • Leaders don’t drive for continuous improvement
  • Managers are unaware of how to innovate or be creative
Organizational Structure & Role Accountabilities
  • The process to control and release innovation has not been made clear
  • Poor structure contributes to inflexibility in process
Strategy & Planning
  • Innovation and creativity are not articulated as priorities
  • The implementation of innovation has not been formalized

OPEN / CLOSE
Ineffectiveness

“The projects and initiatives we launch come in late and/or over estimated resources.”

LevelRoot CausesRelief
Leadership & Management Ability
  • Poor management practices allow employees to underperform
  • Staff are given managers who do not add value
  • Bad staffing fills roles with employees incapable of doing the work
  • Managers do not practice continuous improvement
Organizational Structure & Role Accountabilities
  • Too many/too few organizational layers
  • There is a lack of an understanding and application of accountability
  • Bad structure places roles at wrong level for strategic requirements
  • Co-lateral and cross-functional accountabilities and authorities have not been made clear
Strategy & Planning
  • Strategy is not clearly articulated
  • Strategy is unrealistic. Possibly planned for shareholder attention as versus capability
  • Poor implementation planning
  • Project goals are not clearly defined

OPEN / CLOSE
Poor Strategy and Implementation

“We continually miss our quarterly goals.” “Our strategy doesn’t make sense.”

LevelRoot CausesRelief
Leadership & Management Ability
  • Managers do not know how to lead nor manage their team
  • Managers do not know how to plan effectively
  • Managers are unable to make decisions and set priorities
  • Managers are not held accountable by their managers
Organizational Structure & Role Accountabilities
  • Too many/too few organizational layers
  • There is a lack of an understanding and application of accountability
  • Co-lateral and cross-functional accountabilities and authorities have not been made clear
Strategy & Planning
  • Poor strategy development and/or articulation
  • Poor planning and implementation
  • Executive suite does not have the right talent to do the work

OPEN / CLOSE
Lack of Talent

“We don’t have the leadership strength we need for the future.”

LevelRoot CausesRelief
Leadership & Management Ability
  • Managers do not understand their mentoring role as a manager-once-removed
Organizational Structure & Role Accountabilities
  • The accountability of managers-once-removed to be mentors has not been made clear
  • There is a lack of an understanding and application of accountability
Strategy & Planning
  • Poor strategy development and/or planning
  • There is a lack of a talent pool development process

Copyright © Forrest & Company Limited. Optimized for FF6+ IE8+ Safari 5+, JS Enabled, CSS 2.1+