In a nutshell: It is possible for the manager to improve a team’s performance without firing by working to align the team member’s ROLES with responsibilities and making sure that all the proper ROLES are present to accomplish your mission. This article will describe how.
Turn around a team without firing? I read an interesting posting about turning around a dysfunctional team without firing anyone. http://www.success.com/articles/1599-howto-turn-around-a-team . To summarize the author gives some good information about what the manager can do if the team is failing to work together and has backbiting, low productivity, poor sales, high turnover and an atmosphere loaded with tension and resentment.
The author suggests the a couple of things that the manager might try. He suggests the manager be decisive, assume the best in the people, create strong guiding standards, train employees in communication skills, and speak with each individual to find out what motivates them and what are their strengths. These are pretty general suggestions and are typical of good consultants who work with managers in such situations but there may be an even valuable approach.
There is a new tool that has recently been made available that was designed to predict how people wil perform on teams. It provides manager’s insight and a the model of building a high performance team. The tool uses Role-based technology and is called the Teamability Report.
How does it work? Think of every organization or team as a super employee ie. A human thing that you manage to accomplish the needed work. I believe that this is a reasonable assumption and an understanding of the team and it’s needs will help make you a better manager. A team will do best if it has a clear mission, has the skills and tools necessary to accomplish the mission, and has it’s basic organizational needs met.
Let’s quickly talk about the organizational needs. For every mission a team’s required skills and needs may differ. A sales team requires different set of skills than an engineering team and different still from an administrative team. To get the most out of any team, the manager’s job is to make sure the mission is clear, the skills are present AND the organizational needs will be met. This is done by putting the right people in place and structuring the people so that they have the right responsibilities.
Role-based analysis indicates that every organization’s operational needs can be described by up to 10 different Roles (see below). A person’s attraction to fulfilling one of 10 of the organizational needs is called their ROLE. When a person’s ROLE is in alignment with their job responsibilities the person will perform at a higher level as part of the team. The manager’s job is to make sure the team has a clear mission, has the skills onboard to accomplish the mission AND to align the team ROLEs with the team member’s responsibilities.
10 Organizational Needs of a TeamFounder Vision Mover Vision Former Action Mover Action Former Explorer Watchdog Conductor Curator Communicator
Here is the simplest example of a two person company that works well as a team. Two ladies form a consulting firm to provide services to their clients. One Linda, who is a Vision Mover/Action Mover/ Founder provides the direction, sales, and customer facing activities for the operation. The other Jane, is a Conductor/ Explorer/ Action Former who is responsible for paperwork, accounting, billing, and in general finding the outside services to manage the operation. They have a well defined Mission Statement, have the skills to accomplish their mission and the two of them working together meet the organizational needs and their Roles are in alignment with their responsibilities. Both are happy in their work and the company is successful.
What would happen if their ROLES were reversed? That is what if Linda was responsible for paperwork, accounting, billing, and in general finding the outside services to manage the operation and Jane was responsible for the direction, sales, and customer facing activities for the operation. I asked them and they said they would be miserable. Their ROLES wouldn’t be in alignment with their responsibilities. Their team might survive but the team members wouldn’t be happy and as a consequence probably not as successful.
A manager with a bigger team faces the challenge of creating a clear Mission Statement, making sure the team has the skills, and the team’s organizational needs are met. Establishing a clear Mission takes insight, effort and experience but it can be done. Getting the right skills on board also takes effort and maybe the relationship with a good recruiting partner. To meet the team’s needs the manager first needs to know the required ROLES needed to accomplish his mission, the ROLES of his people and then works to align the ROLES with team member’s responsibilities. It is possible for the manager to improve a team’s performance without firing by working to align the team member’s ROLES with responsibilities and making sure that all the proper ROLES are present to accomplish your mission.
The Teamability Report uses Role-based technology to make access to the results of once time consuming and expensive analysis INEXPENSIVE and EASY to utilize. The manager uses this tool to identify and manage good team members and help align the team member’s ROLE with their job responsibilities.
Author: Rick Zabor
Engineer / Scientist / Researcher turned Recruiter in 1987. Interested in the best way to do things and mixing with people who have passions for life. Writes on topics important to building winning teams and personal growth and accomplishment. Connect with me on Linkedin. Lives in Atlanta, GA.