Organizational Alignment Part 2: Case studies and the important secrets they reveal

One of the most important growth strategies a credit union can implement is a routine test of the degree of alignment within the organization. But oftentimes, this is a poorly executed or entirely missed opportunity at many institutions. The Harvard Business Review study, The New Game Plan for Strategic Planning, found that 84% of respondents ranked “management alignment” as the most important task, with only 41% saying their organization performed it well. In my last post, I addressed new approaches to alignment, and methods for measuring them. Here we’ll review two case studies on credit unions that assessed, clarified, and planned for improving their alignment.

One billion-dollar credit union we worked with found that they were not diving deep enough into strategy development conversations, which require more frequent cross-functional communication. We could have done 1:1 interviews or group workshops for feedback, but we proposed a quicker, more measurable and trackable approach. Here’s what we uncovered:

  • At this organization, only 8% of the senior staff felt strongly that they, as a senior team, do a good job of listening when developing short- and long-term priorities.
  • 12% straight up disagreed; most were middle of the road.


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