Wednesday, November 6, 2013

BHAG - The Service Company Conundrum

BHAG - The Service Company Conundrum

By: Teja Setty (Andrew Id: VTS)

I have been especially fascinated by the concept of the Big Hairy Audacious goal and how to come up with one for an organization. From the discussion in the class it seemed evident to me that the idea of a BHAG was not only to create a goal for the organization, but also provide a motivational influence to the employees of an organization.

   I have been a part of service oriented organizations my whole life, whether it be the family business, or my career in consulting. So thinking of a BHAG for a small/ medium business or a large consulting firm in the business of only providing services the key aspects of a BHAG would be:
 - Revenue
 - Market share
 - Reach of the organization in terms of geographies
 - Clientele
 - Size of the organization
and I cant think of anything else.

My question in this context is does a BHAG which has anything to do with the above mentioned factors have a real motivational influence on the employees of the organization. I doubt I can be motivated by a BHAG which says "To be the largest professional services organization by 20XX" or one that say " Revenues of $x billion by 20xx". Does this mean that the BHAG only serves to set direction and goals for the upper echelons of the organization for service oriented organizations?

I think maybe an organization wide BHAG is not the way to go for service oriented organizations. Is it possible that the BHAG has to be defined at department/ team levels for it to be more effective in this scenario? Should the organization level BHAG should be used only to motivate and set a goal for the people higher up the ladder in the organization, who have something significant to gain from aligning to the goal , like Partners and Directors of the organization?

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