Today’s focus continues to unpack David Rock’s SCARF model with a look at the second factor – CERTAINTY. Certainty is a firm conviction of the future.
In the work environment, certainty connects staff to a predictable future. As leaders, we can threaten that certainty by focusing on the problems at hand and the potential failure of the department if something does not change.
We create certainty in our staff by tapping into their teleological nature. Creating vivid pictures of the future engages followers to realise that vision. This approach is consistent with the appreciative inquiry method, where we recognise what is currently working and set plans to expand on the current success. This instils an abundance mentality and helps to create certainty in the organisation.
As we connect our staff to our goals, through painting a vivid picture, or vision, of the future, we also want to bring that future closer to reality by articulating a strategy to achieve the vision. This simple cause-and-effect path helps the staff see how they can contribute to achieving the vision. The effective leader then reinforces current actions that are already moving the department towards this vision. Followers see where their individual effort will make a difference and they engage their discretionary energy in the pursuit of realising the organisation’s vision. This, in turn, drives more proactive and innovative actions by the staff.
As a leader, Connect the Dots and create Certainty by articulating a vivid image of the future, the strategy to achieve it, and how each person can contribute to the successful achievement of the vision.