Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Five Guys: Strategic Motivators

One of the four fundamental building blocks of executing successful strategy is creating appropriate motivating tactics for employees, as discussed in the article “The Secretes to Successful Strategy Implementation.” The article talks about the key drivers to success, highlighting five of the top ranked methods, which fall under the building blocks of clarifying decision rights and designing information flow. My thoughts, derived from reading the article, are that aligning motivators goes hand in hand with the above tactics.

Five Guys Burgers and Fries stands as a perfect example for this case as it has successfully developed the institutionalized motivational strategies into their management that helps them keep their work flow organized, through competitive and resourceful employees. The understanding that the greatest asset that any institution has be it commercial or financial is the people who work for it. That the single most important lesson that any company needs to embrace to find and achieve high rates of success. As Steve Jobs enumerated in one of his interviews about running a company successfully, he emphasized on the importance of understanding the inbred product and the people involved in the company first before divulging your resources and investing into marketing and advertising. The crux of the product is what needs to be upheld in the highest regard for any company to be successful, as it retains the value of the company. Having that passion to make the product better, or the service better in every employee’s eyes is what leads to the collective effort to grow an institution.

Five Guys has utilized several tactics that have aided in spurring good work ethic and motivation amongst its hourly workers, store and senior level managers. The top 200 stores are awarded a sum per week depending on their performance, evaluated by mystery shoppers who rated their experience. Motivating store managers tends to be the harder task, which Five Guys tackles by detailing several performance criteria and awarding the top 30 percent of operators, through an all-inclusive trip to a tropical location. These performance metrics include store-level profitability, secret shopper performance, as well as same-store sales numbers.

All this being said, I think that the most important factor that can contribute to the success of the employees and therefore the success of the company as a whole would be that each member knew exactly how information flows from one person to the next thereby adding to the fact that each person knows his or her role in the organization. With all these components set in place, then only can the members of the organization effectively work to increase performance within the institution.

In what ways do you feel the connection lies between making clear decision rights of employees and members of the organization and effectively aligning motivators that can successful drive the implementation of a company’s strategy?


“The Secrets to Successful Strategy Implementation.” Harvard Business Review. June 2008

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