They result from executing a smart human capital strategy connecting the plant floor to the C-Suite.
That strategy places a premium on critical thinking skills.
Critical thinking skills are processes employees use to perceive issues, gather information and solve problems. Information is acquired by observing, reasoning, communicating and pondering. This skill set includes conceptualization, application, analysis, creativity and innovation.
Clients expect partners, suppliers and vendors to be aligned, agile, interoperable and collaborative.
If you provide services to smart plants, then you understand that value creation is all about the value of business and engineered outcomes. Executing that strategy involves the input-throughput-output of your total workforce.
Executing this smart plant value strategy does not involve just some of your employees. Rather, it includes all of your employees, from front door to loading dock.
No matter what price point wins the initial contract, if your people lack professional competence, you are not invited back to the business table. Your people are not able to deliver high quality post-sale support.
Therefore, customer success for customer retention is negatively impacted.
Everyone in your organization has a critical role to play. Do they know what that role is?
Enlightened employers understand the value of building smart teams for customers. Furthermore, enlightened companies build smart teams to execute an overall organizational dynamics strategy.
Regardless of company size and business model.
On the one hand, perhaps you ramp up and scale down employee head count in response to fluctuating number of won deals. On the other hand, re-consider the value subcontracted staffers continue to deliver to customers once that project is completed?
These people represent more than simply hiring warm bodies to complete a project. They really get to know your customers.
For starters, when company culture revolves around building smart teams for smart plants, employees liberate themselves from this numbers game. Instead, employees are valued assets.
Create enduring business and engineered outcomes. Leverage a hiring strategy which values not only professional competence, but also a rock-solid soft skills portfolio.
These skills, when combined, create synergy for post-sale customer success and long term customer retention.
Critical thinking skills play big when building smart teams for smart plants.
If you do not value critical thinking skills in your workforce hiring strategy, then your own business success eventually is impacted.
Let’s face it. You have a dilemma. Everyone in your current workforce is not hired for their critical thinking skills, right? Yet digital transformation values this soft skill set. Especially in industrial Internet of Things (IoT) environments.
You have a decision to make.
Either divide workforce hiring strategy into Us versus Them, or start building smart teams for the smart plant.
Sure, you employ Order-Takers who like to be told what to do and execute in assembly-line, piece-work fashion. Then again, you employ knowledge workers, the Innovators, who love to contemplate what is possible.
In smart plant environments, these two types of thinkers collaborate, productively and profitably, on behalf of your clients.
Building smart teams for smart plants places an emphasis on interoperability and cross-functional collaboration. Digital transformation of the plant floor involves teams of innovators working side by side with order-takers.
Do you know the difference?
The critical thinking process for smart plant environments tests everyone’s communications skills, patience, and professional competency. It is interesting how this shakes out.
You observe innovative order-takers and knowledge workers who want to be told what to do. Things are not necessarily what they appear to be, at face value. 😉
Cinderella stories are hidden throughout an organization. Identify yours. You will find value in their critical thinking abilities.
Do you have a strategy for building smart teams for your and your clients’ smart plants?
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Babette Ten Haken writes, speaks, consults and coaches about collaborative value creation for customer success and customer retention. She connects the dots between strategy and execution. She works across leadership, human capital / HR and technical/IT/engineering teams within the industrial Internet of Things ecosystem. Her focus? Creating enduring business outcomes. Babette’s playbook of technical / non-technical collaboration hacks, Do YOU Mean Business? is available on Amazon. Visit the Free Resources section of her website for more tools.
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