The following is Richard Voreis’ outline of Greenway’s LEAP management system to make successful firms more so, and faltering practices healthy and profitable.

The following is Richard Voreis’ outline of Greenway’s LEAP management system to make successful firms more so, and faltering practices healthy and profitable.

Leadership—The top executive in a firm usually got to that position by being an outstanding performer “on the way up.” Now, it is their challenge as a leader to get employees to perform as well as they did in their earlier jobs. That’s not easy!

Leaders must find ways that will develop a spirit of teamwork within the organization. Ultimately, effective leadership makes the firm a place where the best people want to work and it retains those same employees in a career path. Also, the firm becomes a place where the best clients want to do business.

Empowerment—Employee empowerment is a hot topic today and certainly is important in today’s competitive business environment. But without accountability within the organization, the top executive ends up being the only one held accountable. This is not the way a business should be run, especially in the challenging environment that most businesses operate in today.

Accountability—Empower your employees, but don’t stop there—you need to make them accountable too! We’ll address this in more depth later.

Program—This consulting service provided by the Greenway Group will help architectural firms and other companies involved in the building construction industry to implement LEAP as their new management system. These same management tools have been used by our consulting principal during his business career with three highly successful corporations and knows they get results.

“The Big Idea”
By design, leadership, employee empowerment and accountability should be complimentary. In that regard, managing and motivating employees requires a combination of interrelated techniques and tools to maximize results. LEAP by Design delivers management techniques and tools that ensure everyone within the firm has buy-in and commitment to drive success.

In the truest sense, architectural firms are a business; they should be run as such. The LEAP management system aligns with that premise and achieves results because it’s easy to understand and simple to implement. You don’t have to be a business major to make it work.

The LEAP management model will grow revenues, increase profits and ultimately bring about the following:

  • Happy Clients

  • Happy Employees

  • Happy Owners

That’s what every successful (or not so successful) firm wants and needs in today’s challenging business environment. The LEAP model involves consulting services from Greenway Consulting, to conduct a strategic assessment. Discussion of the summary report with management staff follows. The consultant serves as trainer and facilitator to allow full implementation for maximum beneficial effect.

Empowering your employees is fruitless, unless you make them accountable, too. Here is how LEAP’s concentric principles combine for greater happiness, better work and a higher level of success.

Firm-Wide Top Priorities + Employee Action Plans + Accountability = SUCCESS

Here is how the LEAP by Design management system differs from other similar programs and why it is a better system:

  • The Executive Management Team works initially with a consultant to develop firm-wide priorities; thus there is immediate buy-in and commitment. (In this phase, the consultant only facilitates determining and defining ideas and goals most important for the firm’s health and growth.)

  • LEAP is based on measurable, easy-to-understand actions.

  • All employees are involved in developing their own supporting action plans (a key element of success)

  • The entire firm is focused on top priorities (essential to success).

  • Because employees are empowered and Involved, they quickly embrace the new Management System (immediate buy-in throughout entire organization)

  • Action plans promote a bias for action and positive results

  • Implementation is not costly or time-consuming

  • Progress is periodically reviewed throughout the year (continuing assessment of top priorities and action plans)

  • LEAP generates better results … increased revenues and profits

This formula for employee involvement, empowerment and accountability is motivational and result-oriented. Employees from the top to the bottom of the organization embrace the management philosophy that drives LEAP.

Strategic Assessment
Everything starts here. Conducting a Strategic Assessment involves personal interviews with a representative number of executives, management and key staff employees. Most often employees will be more direct and candid with a consultant than with their management. This means you will receive insight into problems and opportunities that would not normally surface in traditional communication channels. That’s essential in getting top management focused!

During personal interviews there is a major focus on determining the firm’s strengths and weaknesses. Exploring the management system currently is in place and identifying other needs are also part of the interview stage.

Following the interviews a Strategic Assessment Report is written to summarize the findings and function as a discussion guide with the top management team. At that time, the consultant usually assists the management team in defining the Top Priorities of the firm.

Finally, don’t expect the consultant to drop a lengthy report on you and then disappear. Instead, expect a consulting relationship where we help you outline implementation plans and can assist with employee training to achieve the priorities you define as essential. In most cases, we suggest opportunities to install new management tools. In some cases, interviews and research support the start and maintenance of proven management tools.

Moving Forward
Now that you have an outline of LEAP by Design, there are several alternatives available.

Call or e-mail us to ask questions or request further information about LEAP by Design. Request a one-page Self-Evaluation Management Checklist to determine if your current management system and culture are what you need for future success. And keep in mind, accountability is not a top-down phenomenon. Success or not depends on everyone understanding they are responsible for the firm’s future.

—Richard Voreis