The Search for Team Perfection
All organisations have a formal structure and agreed on processes to ensure its productivity and efficiency. Not all are perfect, not everyone enjoys them, and most are a work in progress. Management is the custodian of these structures and efficient processes and as such is often seen as “protector” of such.
In our work, we have encouraged Management to open themselves to input from the team members. The advantage of this is obvious, the reason why it often doesn’t happen is a little scarier:
- Fear of losing control
- Fear of losing power or authority
- Fear of wasting time
Here are some ideas that Managers who believe in creating a High-Performance Environment can follow.
Introduce a Debriefing Process
Jim Murray, in his book “Flawless Execution,” introduced a process which we have adopted successfully into our business. Simply put, it means that after every activity, event or project, the full team and all those who had an impact in the outcome, meet and unpack the “good, the bad, and the ugly.”
The outcomes are either good or bad or somewhere in between; the objective is to learn from whatever we did good or bad and decide whether to make these process or behaviour changes part of our new culture of High Performance.
Beyond Teambuilding pride ourselves in creating events, activities and challenges that push any team past mediocrity, allowing them to express themselves in a way that unleashes a team synergy that is often lying dormant. Our teambuilding is done in two definitive ways; formal and informal. Both have merit and are used to create the specific objectives of your particular team’s needs.
Because an outcome can be affected by various variables, we deal with three parts of the process, namely the PLANNING, then the BRIEFING/COMMUNICATION and lastly, the EXECUTION phase.
Preceding this has to be a conditioning phase so that the team becomes open to expressing their opinions “without fear or favour”. Some of the conditioning exercises can be:
- Group think-tanks where a current problem is given to the team, and they are asked to try and come up with three solutions (without Management)
- Challenge the team to talk about their strengths and weaknesses in an open forum (as a Manager start with yourself and explain the impact of each)
- Have “magic wand” sessions where the team talks about what they would do to improve the business and the team with no restrictions.
The above ideas may appear quite daunting at first, but the benefits are HUGE!
Written by John Ingram, Director of The HiSide Group/Beyond Teambuilding
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