3 Steps for Improved Leadership Development

Dysfunctional management teams slow down, derail, and eventually paralyze an entire company!

Human dynamics dictate that few teams will ever work as well as they should.

Three crucial priorities for constructing and managing effective top teams will help drive better business outcomes in areas ranging from customer satisfaction to worker productivity and many more.

1. Get the Right People on The Bus..

.. and the wrong people off! As a CEO, any breakdown under you is eventually 90% your fault and only 10% of the respective party! Sound too harsh?

Well, you’re the one with the “fire power”.

Over my lifetime, more than one-third of executives have said their top teams did not have the right people and capabilities. The key to getting a top team’s composition right is deciding what contributions the team as a whole, and its members as individuals, must make to achieve an organization’s performance objectives and then making the necessary ongoing adjustments to the teams. This sounds simple, but too often CEO’s don’t ensure the necessary pulse-checks and agile processes are in place to combat under-delivery for an extended period of time.

The solution could be as simple as moving from a geography based to a customer-focused structure. Another tough, but smart, choice should be removing anyone who strongly resists cross-organizational collaboration. Ironically enough the solutions have typically been staring you in the face for quite some time. This solution alone recently moved one company’s customer service index (7-point scale) from 2.3 to 4.3 within one year & then to 5.4 within two years.

2. The Right People in the Right Seats on Your Bus

Many top teams struggle to find purpose and focus. Only 38% of executives typically say their teams focused on work that truly benefited from a top-team perspective, and  only 35% said their top teams allocated the right amounts of time among the various topics they considered important, such as strategy and people.

What’s wrong with this picture? Management layers are often doing all of the wrong things, and typically because they’re confusing strategy with tactics, failing to set and or enforce S.M.A.R.T.E.R. priorities & finally failing to distinguish between things they must act on vs. those they should merely monitor (delegation).

A Strategy in a Day exercise is typically all you really need to get your people sitting in the right seats again.

A company who recently took this measure, in addition to 180% growth year-on-year, found that employee satisfaction scores improved from 54% to 79% in only one year. Does that sound appealing to you?

3. Team Dynamics, Interdependencies & Process

Team dynamics is a frequent problem, with studies showing that on average only about 30% of a management teams’ time was spent in “productive collaboration”. But wait.. that figure that dropped even further when teams dealt with high-stakes topics, and where members had differing / entrenched interests.

Steps to remedy problems with team dynamics include working with the team to develop a common & objective understanding of why its’ members aren’t collaborating effectively. There are several assessment tools available for this purpose, including Core Ideology / Values Gap Analysis within team members. It’s key that your team take ownership of the changes in the company’s performance and culture, holding one another accountable for living up to this (their) commitment.

A New Bus & Profitable Journey

Correcting dysfunctional dynamics requires focused attention, regular interventions, and transparent communication across the board.

Get that right and you will witness with clarity of direction doubled to +70%, operational improvements bringing down costs by +20% over the same period, and finally, work completed on time rising by +8%.

What would those numbers represent for your organization?

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