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Gathering employee insights for effective corporate strategy
Every year, “BASHKIROVA & partners” measures employee engagement for many medium and large size organizations in Russia, thus indirectly helping companies to create the conditions for human resources to thrive and deliver their efforts in the best interest of the business. There are various research methods that allow to measure the employee engagement, among which are online employee surveys, in-depth interviews and focus groups. In this short brief, we would like to present the focus groups method, which is rather time-consuming and more expensive overall, but can provide deeper understanding of employees emotions and reactions that are necessary to consider when developing corporate strategy.
The purpose of the focus group process is to gather employee insights on professional growth, innovation, teamwork and many other sensitive areas that should be improved.Through informal conversations guided by independent Moderator, the company can receive the feedback from their employees that managers weren’t comfortable discussing directly or employees were not ready to voice. Employee focus groups are an effective way to explore a corporate issue, test a new concept, follow up on the launch of a program and find out many useful solutions to pertinent issues.
Among the most recent projects, we have implemented the employee focus groups for a leading consumer products company in Russia, which was considering reformulating its strategic directions and launching the new product line, which would completely reshape its current image. The Company was trying to generate its employee feedback regarding the upcoming strategic reformulations, as well as their perceptions, fears and hopes regarding the future developments. Therefore, they decided to conduct internal focus groups, which were organized and moderated by “BASHKIROVA & partners”.
The starting point in any research project is defining the thesis statements, which in our case was built around three principal questions:
- Current corporate purpose and culture
- Perceptions of strategic changes and new product development
- Directions for improvement
After defining the thesis, recruiting participants is one of the most crucial steps to the success of a focus group project, as participants should represent the organization. After conducting the focus groups, our team has developed a report with key findings sharing major insights with the key stakeholders.
As a result, in just a few days, the Company has gained a valuable feedback about what employees are thinking. Now they are equipped with the necessary knowledge regarding employee perceptions and preferences and can use this information for promoting company goals.