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Workforce Alignment

J-SAT can help agencies align their workforce so that it has a clear focus on service and partnering with all levels of clients, stakeholders and ‘customers’. We are well practiced in helping managers unlock the deepest learning potential of their organization as well as within themselves.

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About Workforce Alignment

Workforce development and alignment is a key factor in the Malcolm Baldridge Award for organizational excellence, as well as in any other organizational development model. Admittedly, J-SAT has come to focus on this critical area only recently. After years of focusing on individual offender interventions and change strategies, for the past several years we have begun emphasizing interventions for staff and improved staff alignment. Using and training proven dialogue strategies, the U process, Immunity to Change Mapping and many other effective tactics we are learning how to engage managers in ways to empower them to work their direct reports differently. And in turn their DR’s work differently with their clients. A common denominator in this work is exploring and surfacing ways to closing gaps in two areas: coaching (at all levels) and implementation science.

J-SAT began repositioning itself to support staff development models, rather than staff training models in 2004, when a rigorous randomized trial on developing MI skill competency (Yahne, et al) showed training was inadequate and only coaching and feedback were essential. We had long-standing misgivings about the ‘train and pray’ approach and after looking into the alternatives we committed to developing our own coaching capacity as we began to encouraging customers to do the same in most implementations of EBP.

Now, more than ten years later we are very clear about the need for approaching implementation broadly, with all seven implementation drivers attended to, not just training. While we made this shift we also began to realize the value of introducing all new EBPs adequately to all levels within an organization. In addition to a gap in coaching capacity, we also find a gap in adequate granular knowledge about the intervention processes agencies are claiming to provide. While this gap includes shortcomings in terms of innovation fluency at the line level, it is often most pronounced at the upper management levels. This isn’t because senior managers aren’t interested. It’s because adequate implementation systems haven’t been put in place that tailor and develop leaders in the intervention-specific knowledge they need to successfully manage new processes. We provide this.

Unlocking the learning potential of the entire agency workforce is paramount to being successful in the coming, unpredictable times. In the Balanced Scorecard system that is pervasive and referred to world-wide in corporate business, the foundation is the learning and growth perspective of the workforce. Because all subsequent strategic thrusts that comprise an organization’s strategic plan, depend on this foundation, it truly is the determining factor.

J-SAT has developed several successful strategies for managers to better understand and manage the parallel processes they deal with day-in and day-out. We support bottom-up and top-down change initiatives. However, in the final analysis we understand that if the top-down day-to-day modeling and demonstration of transformative leadership principles is not in place, distributive leadership will never succeed. Thus we approach all consulting with sensitivity to modeling and parallel processes in human services.

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