How One Team Stopped Avoiding and Started Communicating
Trying to be “nice” isn’t always so nice.
A senior management team in the healthcare industry was facing a transitional period and some financial issues. They were looking to consolidate their health center into a single location—and it was the biggest challenge they’d ever faced.
Several changes were happening at once: a new building was purchased, one new member joined the team, and another resigned. Before their challenges got the better of them, they wanted to improve their ability to lead the organization while keeping the healthy aspects of the team dynamic intact.
To tackle the team’s challenges, Tony and two of his colleagues used the Team Diagnostic™ Assessment, which focuses on the team as a whole and not as individuals. The tool measures 14 factors of success and gives a deep, accurate view of the team’s inner workings, including its strengths and weaknesses.
After deployment and follow-up coaching from Tony and his colleagues, the team developed an accountability system and a new contract for working together. They learned to have more honest, open discussions and be receptive to others’ points of view. This significantly increased their overall positivity, which lead to more productive discussions and better decision-making overall.
To learn more about this team’s success story, download the PDF.
“This team was too concerned with ‘being nice.’ They either made decisions by consensus or avoided making them until things reached crisis mode, then took action in a disjointed and ad hoc manner. We introduced them to some skills and structures, and they got comfortable discussing things with no fear of hurting someone’s feelings. This put them on the path to being the effective leadership team the organization needed.”
Donna Found the Confidence to Achieve Her Goals
Sometimes “truths” can hold you back.
Donna was a young woman with exceptional talent and ability. She’d been recognized as a future leader at a prestigious 4-year college. But problems started when she was promoted over her peers, many who had more experience than Donna. Their resentment paired with her insecurity was overwhelming.
Because the company recognized the value of offering coaching, Donna took the opportunity and chose Tony as her coach. Together they outlined her goals and spent time discussing her day-to-day challenges. Several of her issues were addressed with certain actions, such as working at home some nights. For others, they set up situations where she could “fail” to in order to further her learning.
Because Donna was able to change the way she perceived herself and interacted with others, she let go of some damaging ideas she’d thought to be truths. With increased confidence and a more calm and deliberate approach, Donna achieved all of her goals. She continues to be recognized as one of the shining stars in her department and the college as a whole.
“It was obvious from the start that Donna lacked self-confidence. Getting promoted meant she had meetings with colleagues of a much higher rank. But her hesitation to speak up kept her from sharing her own ideas. Instead of having Donna speak up in these meetings immediately, we came up with smaller steps to get there. As her confidence grew, so did her effectiveness.”
Job Satisfaction for Ann Marie
Finding solutions that benefit the whole company.
Ann Marie had worked at a personal service company for years. She had become the go-to gal for challenging logistical issues, such as redesigning the office space. She’d also developed a network of people to help her get things done—efficiently, within the budget, and on time. But because of the frenetic pace, she was burning out. Ann Marie seriously considered leaving, but she didn’t want to leave a gaping hole in her department.
During a discussion with her manager, they decided coaching might help Ann Marie find job satisfaction. After meeting several coaches, Ann Marie chose Tony based on his approach and experience. In their first meeting, they identified certain things that created her dissatisfaction, such as too many meetings and a 24/7 always-on culture. With her manager’s support, they created structures that helped lessen the negative impact of some of the company’s cultural norms.
With support from Tony, Ann Marie was able to slow down, feel better, and get even more accomplished at work. She decided that leaving wasn’t a viable option. So with her manager, she created a new set of responsibilities while delegating other responsibilities to others in her department. This proved to be a win-win for all involved.
“This company valued being busy so much that it actually disempowered some key employees. Drawing upon the ‘slow down’ practice of Timeless Wisdom at Work®, Ann Marie developed rigid structures around how and when she made herself available. By carving out white space on her calendar, she gained perspective and become effective. We also found a way to manage off-hour communications so she could better connect with her family, dramatically increasing her life satisfaction.”
How One Team Learned to Work Together
Trust and communication go hand in hand.
The leader of a public service organization noticed growing dissension among members of his team. Tony was called in to help before the situation escalated and affected the quality of their work. He started off by conducting confidential interviews with each team member. He then compiled a report for the CEO that consolidated his learnings while keeping his interviewees’ identities private.
Tony held an off-site retreat and introduced the team to H.O.W. (being Honest, Open, and Willing). After he established the right atmosphere, the team had discussions that lead to a new way of interacting. On a practical level, they restructured how to handle their electronic communications. On a deeper level, once they learned to talk to and listen to one another objectively, the team’s level of trust increased dramatically.
“What the CEO found most interesting were the common themes that presented around style, how meetings were conducted, and most importantly, how communication within the group deteriorated as the ‘Crackberry’ syndrome took hold.”
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