Remember the excitement of your 5th grade class trip to Washington, D.C.? You walked around the city, taking in the wonders with a group of your closest friends. You used up multiple rolls of film by snapping pictures of you and your friends in front of The Lincoln Memorial and The White House. We won’t even mention the hotel pictures. It was pure, unsupervised adolescent bliss. And when you start feeling really nostalgic, you probably post some of these as a #tbt on your social media pages.
Our Diversification Team probably felt that same level of excitement when they discovered that they were chosen to attend the 2nd Annual Strategy Execution Summit in Washington, D.C. Chief Strategy Officer, JP Montgomery, reviewed the roster of Necco attendees and just shook his head. He knew that our Nation’s Capital would never be the same. He also knew that if anyone could bring the conference knowledge back home, it would be this team. “We hoped to gain an additional perspective from the experiences of others. We also wanted to send some of the members of our theme teams to learn and bring back ideas on how we can improve, network with other companies, and enhance our internal strategy communications”, Montgomery stated.
So, on May 18th, Amy Rickman, Eric Morton, Mavis Williamson, Jessica Parks, Rhonda Riley, and Kay Eskridge jet-setted to our Nation’s Capital. The team was eager to learn from other companies, gain a better understanding of strategy and network with Spider Software experts.
For three days, the team soaked up all they could about topics such as Data-Driven Decision-Making, Thought Leadership, and the Alignment of Employee Performance with Strategy. Amy Rickman’s biggest take-away from the conference was about Our People. “The most important thing I learned at the Scorecard conference was to always remember the human element. If we don’t have great communication from top down and back up, we won’t have all staff on board and feeling a part of the process”.
The keynote speaker list was full of heavy-hitters. Our team was able to hear from people like Jeroen De Flander, co-founder of the performance factory and Scott O'Reilly, Chief Software Architect for Spider Strategies. Necco was especially interested in the Spider Strategies presentations because Spider allows us to automate our Scorecards and provide transparent access to all employees at a very low cost. This transparency and ease of access encourages relevant, data-driven decision making.
Even though these speakers were a whole new level of expert, they made themselves available for networking and questions during breaks. "At the networking breaks, it was really easy to approach others. We asked how other companies have implemented their Scorecards, used Spider Software, or cascaded the Scorecard down to their employees. In turn, we shared Necco's mission, vision and experience using the Balanced Scorecard with other companies”, reported Jessica Parks.
There was such diversity within the conference participants. Our team met companies within a similar line of work as well as companies who were drastically different than our own. Kay Eskridge felt there was much to be gained from both types of participants, stating “My favorite part of the conference was meeting so many people, from all over the world who are passionate about the scorecard! Whether it was people from top-down style companies, or those from agencies more similar to ours, the enthusiasm to measure results using the balanced scorecard was infectious!”
The Diversification team gained a tremendous amount of knowledge by attending the conference. We hope to send more teams in the future, preferably a team whose activities do not involve Secret Service monitoring. But we won’t mention any names Jess and Amy!