Manufacture Your Day by OBSERVING PEOPLE’S PROGRESS
When people work together it can be tricky – different personalities, different experiences, different thought processes, different beliefs, different opinions, different cultures and….. different paces of learning.
In running we have a saying, “It doesn’t matter how slow you go. You still lap everyone sitting on the couch.”
I believe that making progress is one of the most overlooked things in the corporate world.
Think about little children who learn how to walk. Some will walk with 9 months, others will walk with 15 months but it is a given that they will walk. If your child wouldn’t walk at 12 months, would you say, “You are too slow. If you fall down one more time, just stop trying” ?
For every good parent this would be unthinkable, right?
Yet, in the corporate world people get put down on a fairly regular basis. People are criticized and their voices often stay unheard.
Think about it, if people can’t do anything right, it affects their self-worth and their self-confidence. As a result, they will stop believing in their ability to contribute value, which in return will affect the bottom line.
Develop your team by providing constructive feedback on an ongoing basis:
- Write down what you like and appreciate about that person (if you find nothing, why is the person working for you?)
- Find 1 thing that the person should learn to do better (1, not 10 things as this would be discouraging)
- Schedule a meeting (respect for their time) and tell them what the meeting is about (feedback meeting)
- Have a good one-on-one conversation (both sitting down)
- Speak from one adult to another adult (not like an adult to a child)
- Ask, “What is one thing that I can do better for you?”
Feedback is here for 2 reasons only:
- help the person to get better (non-judgmental and not criticizing)
- reinforce the behaviour and skills that you already like
- Example: Employee’s name, I really appreciate your positive attitude and that I can always rely on you to get the job done. Can I provide one suggestion that will help you to get even better? I would like that you involve your team members more by asking them open-ended questions (i.e. How can we improve things around here?), because (WWIFM – what’s in it for me) it will help you to create more engagement on your team.
- Observe the person
- Follow up after 1 week (critical) – I have noticed that you have started……. How do you feel about your progress when it comes to involving your team members? Listen to what he/she has to say.
- Be patient and persistent – a new skill needs to be developed and this person is probably outside of his/her comfort zone.
- If the person has mastered it, move on to the next point of improvement.
Everyone has room for improvement, even your star players.
Remember that progress is better than perfection.