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Posts Tagged ‘Team Building’

Teamwork DiSC“What we have here is a failure to communicate.”  This simple statement from the classic movie Cool Hand Luke is truer in our workplace than we want to admit.

We live in a culture where employee engagement and productivity are rapidly decreasing, while business competition, customer expectations, and new technology are on the rise. While there is no quick-fix or easy-button to transform your company, have found that the simple solution is still the right one. A successful company or business team must have effective leadership. Now more than ever, being able to manage an effective team is vital to the success of an organization.

This post and the next will cover 5 simple tips to keep in mind when you are building and managing your team.  The first two tips contained here will be on culture and communication.  The final three tips will follow in the next post and they will be on trust, accountability, and recognition.

Tip #1 – Create a culture that celebrates individuality. Your job as a leader is to help identify each person’s unique skill set and how they can best utilize it to contribute to the success of the whole team.   The fastest way to demotivate your team is by trying to force them to fit in to an environment that does not allow them to operate in the manner most effective for them. Great leadership is not about bossing people around. It is about inspiring them and guiding them towards a common goal. You will pull leaders forward when you encourage them to believe in themselves and what they bring to the table.

Tip #2 – Communicate effectively. In order for your team to maintain a result oriented mindset, there must be an open dialogue for their ideas. People want to feel valued, heard and respected, not just prioritized.  As a leader you must be intentional with your words. If you want your team to be in alignment with your vision, you should adequately articulate information, priorities and long-term goals.  Do not shy away from the difficult conversations just because they are uncomfortable. Even when the content is unfavorable, people tend to be open and receptive when you create a safe space, speak with grace and ask for their input.

The golden rule, while well intended, does not apply to a cross cultural, cross gender, and cross generational workplace. Today it is about invoking the Platinum Rule:  Treat people and communicate with people the way they want to be communicated with.  We use Everything DiSC Workplace to change cultures. This generational tool helps bridge the gap between learning style, communication, and personality differences that can cause petty annoyances.

Please come back for tips three thru five next week.

 

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PXT Select ReportsWhat are the ways companies try to predict success in their hiring?  From an applicant’s resume they may learn: career history, job experience, technical knowledge, and potential references.  From the interview process, they hope to understand the applicant’s: thinking style, extent of technical skills, true job knowledge, problem solving skills, and typical behavior traits.  Following this, they hope for a good selection process to match the right candidate to the correct job.

What is the company had a better way of doing interviews that could insure a better selection process?  In a previous post, you learned that PXT Select assessment could be required by each candidate for the job position.  Once multiple candidate assessments are complete, management and human resources gain access to a range of reports that can used for the selection process, as well as other purposes after the hiring is complete.  Below is a list of the PXT Select reports and what is contained in each.

 

PXT Select Position and Single Candidate Reports

Report Name Results Summary or Definition Performance Model Interview Questions or Ideal Candidate
Comprehensive Selection

 

Candidate’s Results from the assessment compared to the Performance Model Range of scores typical for success in the position, with scale and job fit interpretations Series of personalized Questions based on the candidate’s fit to the Performance Model
Performance Model (for position) Definition of each of the styles and traits Range of scores typical for success in the position Statement describing the Ideal Candidate for this position will appear for each style and trait

 

PXT Select Single Employee Reports

Report Name Definitions Feedback or Results
Individual’s Feedback Each of the styles, traits, and interests that were measured by the assessment will be defined Personalized Feedback based on results and how they should be interpreted
Individual’s Graph Each of the styles, traits, and interests that were measured by the assessment will be defined after Results Results will be summarized on scales for Thinking Style, continua for Behavioral Traits, and a ranked-order list for Interests

 

PXT Select – Multiple Placement Comparison Reports

Report Name Performance Models Candidate Fit Comparison or %Fit
Multiple Positions

(1 Candidate to Many)

Range of scores typical for success in each position Candidate’s results from the assessment compared to the Performance Models The candidate’s Overall Fit for each of the positions
Multiple Candidates

(Many to 1 Position)

Range of scores on each scale typical for success in the position Each candidate’s results from the assessment compared to the Performance Models Candidates  results for each scale are placed together for easy Comparison

 

PXT Select – Misc. Management Reports

Report Name Results Feedback Definitions, Reflection, or Action
Coaching

(1 to 1)

Assessment results are compared to the Performance Model, which show the range of score typical for success in the position Feedback personalized for the individual based on the results and how they should be interpreted Thinking Style and Behavioral Traits will be Defined following the results summary
Manager-Employee

(1 to 1)

Manager’s assessment results are compared to the employee’s on 9 different scales Personalized feedback based on how manager‘s results compare to employee’s Reflection includes quick review, questions to answer, and an action plan
Team Each team member’s assessment results placed together on 9 behavioral scales Feedback for each scale based on personal and team’s responses Team averages and personalized tips for Action planning

 

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PXT Select Assessments

Did you know that companies report that 1 in 5 of their hires was a bad hire?   That means 20% of the people hired were not a good fit for the job where they were placed.  Another survey showed that just one bad hire in a position can cost a company $17K and another says for the 6-digit annual income level, a bad hire can lose a company as much as $250K.

Is there a better way to hire the right people for the position you have open?  According to a Fast Company article it primarily comes down to pre-hire assessments and proper onboarding.  So let us start to help you with hiring by introducing a new assessment tool called PXT Select by Wiley (the company that brought us DiSC and Five Behaviors of a Cohesive Team). Wiley assessment solutions empower organizations by providing them with actionable data about the people they employ now and in the future.

What is PXT Select? PXT Select™ is an online hiring assessment designed to help you select the best candidates for your organization.  It contains selection and employee assessment tools to help organizations make smarter hiring decisions.  Simply put, PXT Select can make selecting the right candidate for a job both simpler and smarter. Having the right people in the right jobs fosters a culture of happier, more engaged, and more productive employees.

PXT Select allows your organization to:

  • Fill in the gaps between a resume and interview with actionable objective data
  • Identify the most suitable candidates, streamlining an effective hiring process
  • Match candidates with jobs that fit their inherent capabilities
  • Identify opportunities to enhance performance and maximize an individual’s contribution to an organization
  • Produce several reports for management and HR use, powered by the latest in assessment technology

PXT Select will help your organization:

  • Dramatically streamline your hiring process
  • Minimize the risk of bad hires
  • Reduce turnover
  • Lower your hiring and training costs
  • Add objective, data-driven metrics to your hiring process
  • Drive noticeable improvements in your hiring results
  • Boost employee engagement

Get the most out of this hiring solution with the custom, interactive online learning platform that will provide you with fun, essential learning. If you want to experience PXT Select, you will need to contact an Authorized Partner who can help you fit the assessment power to your unique needs.

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Three Great Sales BooksIf you want to get better at sales, you must keep educating yourself on being a better sales person and communicator.  An easy and enjoyable way to do this is to read books.  Reading a book helps you to go deeper into new concepts, review tried and true strategies, and engage your brain.

To Sell Is Human:  The Surprising Truth About Moving Others by Daniel H. Pink uses Dan’s study research in his “What We Do At Work” to validate what I have been preaching for years, “Everyone Sells”.  This book offers practical insight as to how to use the gift of communication to move people from A to B. That’s what selling is all about moving people, encouraging them to willing make a change, open up their mind to a new idea or persuading them to your way of thinking in a manner that is non combative. This is a book for every sales professional who wants to communicate better with customers!

Three Value Conversations: How to Create, Elevate, and Capture Customer Value at Every Stage of the Long-Lead Sale by Erick Peterson, Tim Riesterer, Conrad Smith, and Cheryl Geoffrion is filled with hidden gems.  This book delivers strategies on how to be engaging throughout the sales process. A key element of the book is about learning to build a buying vision and tell the story of how your product and services supports their vision. If you are looking to become a valued partner within your client organizations, this book is a must read on engagement!

The Score Takes Care of Itself: My Philosophy of Leadership by Bill Walsh, with Steve Jamison and Craig Walsh, is a must read for sales representatives and management leaders everywhere! This book focuses on monitoring and measuring what matters and if you do what it takes, the score will follow.  There are lots of golden nuggets throughout this book to help every professional level within your company’s sales department.

For more sales success reading suggestions, visit the Peak Performance Solutions resources for a book list.

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Team ResultsWhen you can achieve accountability, it will make it much easier for the team to focus on collective results.  It may seem obvious that teams would be focused on its results. You might be thinking “What else would the team focused?” Remember, you are asking team members to put aside: their egos, personal career development, perceived job status, and individual recognition – in favor of the team’s goals.   That is the difference when we say collective results.

Patrick Lencioni says “A functional team must make the collective results of the group more important to each individual than individual members’ goals.”  Each group must identify its own measurable score card. You cannot monitor what you cannot measure.  The score card is vital in helping team members focus on the goal.

Your team members may be conflicted between their own personal goals and the team’s goals, but if they have real trust, work through healthy conflict, can show commitment to the team’s decisions, and if they are willing and able to hold one another accountable – they will be able to focus on the collective results of the team.  IT is the responsibility of the team leader to help the team members understand if they can focus on collective results, the individual results will come along.

If you found this blog post series on what a Cohesive Team is helpful and you are interested in learning more about this program, please contact us.  Peak Performance Solutions is an authorized partner and accredited facilitator for The Five Behaviors of a Cohesive Team.

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AccountabilityNow that we understand commitment, that brings us to the next behaviors of cohesive teams, accountability.  How do you help teams to become more accountable?

First, we want to define accountability as peer-to-peer accountability. We are not talking about personal accountability—I do what I say I’m going to do. That is taking personal responsibility for doing your job.  We are talking about holding one another accountable, and that can be difficult! It can be hard to tell a team member that you think they are not pulling their weight on a project or to question their approach/process for doing a task.   It is just easier to complain to co-workers or the team leader than to follow-up with other team member with team accountability as the goal.

Plus we realize most people do not like to give or get criticism!  Even criticism that is “positive” or made into a feedback sandwich can be hard to say or to hear.  So we suggest they offer constructive feedback (how and why for improvement) instead.  Feedback is a gift to help others grow and so is accountability.   If the team’s relationships are strong and team members are vulnerable then they feel able to provide open and honest feedback to each other and are able to hold each other accountable.

Part of the key to feedback is to understand where the other person is coming from, i.e. their personality of behavioral style.  This is part of the team’s communication that is built through assessments in The Five Behaviors of a Cohesive Team program.  An  interesting thing about providing feedback towards accountability is the more the team members demonstrates this action, the less likely they become in needing to do it as often.  With feedback, team members will develop a habit and a mindset towards being accountable.  This builds accountability for the team as a whole as well.

Next, we will look at why results are the final layer in The Five Behaviors of a Cohesive Team model.

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5b_commitThe conflict we discussed in earlier post often comes up in discussion of options and the decision making process for teams.  Without airing their opinions in passionate and open debate, team members will not buy in and commit to decisions, though they may feign agreement.  Healthy conflict sets the stage for commitment because people will have had the opportunity to share ideas, thoughts, and be heard.

Lots of team-building programs emphasis consensus in decision making.  Consensus is good as it builds commitment, but it is not always possible and certainly not a fast process.  It’s important to understand that commitment does not equal consensus…people can disagree but, having had healthy conflict, will have had the opportunity to share their opinions.  Cohesive teams understand that they must be able to commit even when the outcome is uncertain and not everyone initially agrees. With this understanding, all team members are more willing to commit to the team’s decisions.

Working through commitment requires not only the ability to make wise and discerning results focused decisions. It requires setting up front, team norms or standards of behavior. These norms can be set around “how we communicate”, meeting management, protocol for reaching out to team members that report to another leader and more. They will allow us to set a foundation for “how we do things around here”, eliminating conflict and confusion later on.

Next, we will look at why accountability is a layer in The Five Behaviors of a Cohesive Team model.

 

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