Monday, 12 October 2009

Asking vs. Telling in Business

{pp}Alchemy's answer to how to empower and motivate employees.

Alchemy Consulting focuses not only on assisting clients with business consulting services, but also on empowering them and their businesses, ensuring continued growth and success. Unlike many consulting firms which allow their clients to become reliant on them, Alchemy empowers individuals and businesses to create their own success. As they like to put it, "We don't bury ourselves in your organization. We get in, empower, then get out."

The consultants at Alchemy specialise collectively in the fields of organizational development, project management, strategic planning management and execution, personal mastery and branding, negotiation, sales and sales management, performance management, team building, executive coaching, mentoring, and change management and leadership. Their team has over 100 years of business experience collectively, making them expert and highly skilled.

"As a facilitator, working with groups of business people, I am constantly amazed at the remarkable insights of people that are 'not' often asked for their opinion by senior management" says Peter Thomas, head of strategic planning at Alchemy.

It has become increasingly frequent, especially during the current economic crisis that those who are not in senior management positions are overlooked and their needs and ideas never heard, despite the fact that they form the majority of the company. A business is as strong as its employees; however when a fraction of the individuals in a business dictate the operation and strategy techniques, the business can go "stale".

"The sad fact is that these same people (non senior management) are expected to understand, be passionate about the 'Brand Promise' and then deliver on the promise to the satisfaction of customers. Very often they have to do this, feeling frustrated, because they do not feel empowered to influence or change the processes that drive the business and yet they are operating at the coal face" says Thomas.

To facilitate better communication in companies, Alchemy uses two specific processes to achieve their vision of improved business and empowerment. The first is Participlan, a visual mapping process in which individuals generate ideas silently on special stationary in response to a specific question. The ideas are explored on large sheets where they are debated and kept for future purposes.

The second is Thinkpod. This process is based on the Participlan and consists of a do-it-yourself kit. Using the Thinkpod, an office group can participate in a process using Participlan principles based on existing templates which guide the discussion.

After having created a plan of action, these processes are instituted with careful project planning, guidance and coaching. Through these techniques, Alchemy assists a business with internal communication and strategy yet provides the tools for the business to continue with, empowered and enlightened.

"The business environment we are moving into is increasingly going to need people who are confident, engaged and aligned to the vision of the business, this requires people to listen and talk to each other with clear objectives in mind. This is why Alchemy is helping clients turn their organizations into "asking" as opposed to "telling" organizations" says Thomas.

Contact information:
Alchemy Consulting
Tel: +27 21 552 00 99
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Alchemy Consulting is a business consulting service in South Africa that offers services aimed at motivating and empowering employees and companies.