Have you ever gone all in to support a company only to find out later, the new project you joined them in was like the spaghetti noodle that failed to stick to the wall because it wasn’t al dente’ yet?
If you cook, you may know the term…pasta is done when it is al dente’, meaning “to the tooth.” It is somewhat tender but gives a little resistance when you bite it. It is not mushy. So, when the pasta sticks to the wall it’s supposed to tell you your spaghetti is al dente: just right, according to Culinarylore.com.
When the noodle falls to the floor, not quite ready for consumption, it gets swept up into the trash, like the programs I invested in. I’m mentioning no names on purpose. “Who” doesn’t matter. What matters is…
There is a way for a company to grow without leaving its greatest supporters in the wake of their indecision.
Current Lay of the Land
The first organization where I experienced the al dente’ phenomena was in a non-profit. They were growing so fast, they actually had the philosophy: “Hire to the growth.” The influx of funds gave the false sense of security they couldn’t fail. As a result, money was thrown at ideas without due diligence for the planning and prioritization process. The result, many of the uncooked ideas failed like the uncooked noodle slung on the wall.
Eventually this out of control growth and the unproven methods lead to their downfall and almost destroyed the organization.
My current experience is with a very large for profit organization. With an eighty year success record, the investment I made in their company as a client felt really secure. They have rolled out numerous successful programs with many best selling books and authors. Their goals, professionalism and quality of the programs have been exceptional, and influenced me to join them in their programs.
So you may be wondering, “What’s her gripe?”
Good question. I feel marginalized.
The first program I invested in had clout and substance. Since its roll out three major overhauls have happened. My materials don’t even match the terminology of the changes and now clients have complained. Frankly, I feel frustrated by the lack of consistency. I was assured the program was a priority of the company. However, now I’m not sure how it could possibly be a priority.
I also invested in the flagship program in order to be on the ground floor of a new marketing opportunity they launched. It would open the door for a worldwide platform to connect their clients with new business. The marketing platform was in beta for less than a year. With one month’s notice, the announcement was made it was going to be shut down with no target date to relaunch it. The relaunch, if it happens, will have an entirely different scope, excluding individuals like myself. Talk about the noodle not sticking to the wall……
I’m not sure what to believe, and even if it is worth riding out the tidal wave of their growth philosophy…half baked ideas that aren’t ready to stick yet. I have hope their leadership will wake up and someone will steer them out of this storm–back into steady waters, and back on track.
Hewlett-Packard is a great example of strong leadership. They almost collapsed through all of the diverse paths they had taken until newly appointed CEO Carly Fiorina took the helm and steered them back into greatness. Fiorina lead them back to the original focus, mission, and values of the company.
If I could end with one word of advice as a business coach….
As you grow do it with ethics and grow with the future in mind…and not just your own future, but consider all the people who have gotten you where you are.
When business growth happens it is because you have something people value and are willing to spend their money on. Go back to your values, mission and vision. Stay loyal to ALL of them, because they are what attracted people to you in the first place!
When growth happens don’t get caught up in the tidal wave of excitement and opportunity. Stay the course of the vision, mission, and values that made you great and expand with precision. Keep a steady hand on the wheel through the growth.
With a steady hand on the wheel through the growth of your company, the noodles will stick, so to speak. Programs will be fully prepared for successful launches and customers will not be marginalized. Business growth will be accomplished with integrity. The focus will remain on what made you great, and most of all the customer’s experience with you will be Al Dente’! Well Done.
What’s an example of a company that has earned your loyalty? Leave your comments and subscribe to my blog for more on maximizing business potential.