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BLOGBaseline Capability and Campaigns

by Randall CraigFiled in: Blog, Communication, Make It Happen Tipsheet, Professional Development, StrategyTagged as: , ,

Have you ever been in a situation where despite your best efforts, you cannot make headway?  Or where you feel like a fish swimming upstream?  This inertia – resistance to the new – is a key reason why implementing change is so difficult.  It’s also why selling new products to clients or new ideas to colleagues is so hard.

While there are many ways to address the challenge, two fundamental concepts are Baseline Capability and Campaigns.   Baseline capability refers to the existing knowledge, capabilities, and momentum within an organization.  Campaigns refers to activities that are tied to an event or objective.  Too often organizations (and individuals) confuse the two, particularly in the area of digital.  I explored this from a different perspective here, but it is important enough to look at again.

Baseline capability means embedding the digital mindset and activities within each silo of your organization, so that it becomes part of everyone’s “day job”.  Too often, digital is driven exclusively through marketing and sales – yet connecting externally is everyone’s job.  Some examples:

  • HR:  The use of Social Media for candidate sourcing, reference checking, new staff orientation, etc.
  • Customer Service: Monitoring and action on service issues on the public social networks, product support forums, etc.
  • Supply Chain:  e-Procurement, crowdsourced vendor ratings, online support forums, etc.

Of course, developing a baseline capability also means loosening firewall restrictions for external websites (such as Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter), employee and management training, and communications.

By being digitally strong on the inside, there will be stronger connections on the outside.  Driving the ongoing, day-to-day engagement level of the base is critical: each campaign’s effectiveness is multiplied by the strength of the base.


What is your personal digital Baseline Capability?  Specifically, what are the everyday things that you are doing to establish your professional network online?  Doing these on an ongoing basis will multiply the effectiveness  of any future “campaigns” (job search, professional support, business development, etc.)

Management insight:  Choose a project or idea that you have not been making headway on, and decide if the problem is your approach to getting buy-in, or with the underlying environment that you are in.  If the latter, choose one thing that you can do to improve the general receptivity to your ideas, before doing your specific ask.  Build your real-world baseline capability.

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