Create a culture of success
When I started working with Matt, he was just an individual contributor with aspirations of having significant impact on policy where he works. Matt laid out a 10-year plan to get to his desired destination, and I have no doubt he would have been successful with his plan. In my book I detailed how I was able to help him jump about 6 years ahead in that plan… in just three months! A few months later, he was able to take what he learned while working with me and apply it to enable his direct reports grow as well. In less than a year and a half, Matt and his team had earned a reputation as the “go to” group in the department when it came to making policy decisions. Matt reached his 10-year goal in less than 2 years. But the story doesn’t end there!
Following Matt’s success with team building and performance, his career started to accelerate. Matt shared some performance reviews with me. The feedback he received from his peers and direct reports was glowing. He actually had a peer say that he wanted to work for Matt! Seriously, here are two people theoretically competing for the same promotions, and one of them just conceded! Matt’s superiors at work recognize his team as a model for all other teams to follow. He brings efficiency, effectiveness, and most importantly, results. What company can’t benefit from that? So… how did he do it?
Probably one of the most challenging struggles Matt had was getting buy-in from the team. This was tough, because he had to confront some deep-seated corporate culture issues. Matt wasn’t running his own business, or even working at a small or startup company where there isn’t decades of culture and beliefs. Matt knew he needed to get his team to change patterns of behavior and habits of thought if he was going to accomplish what he had defined as his mission. To do this Matt knew he had to start with laying out a clearly articulated vision. It needed to demonstrate value to everyone in the group. When they were able to see where Matt wanted to take them as a group, he was able to get the group on board and fully bought into the project. We’ve talked about this concept before, but it bears repeating. Leaders must have a clear vision and be able to articulate it in such a way the benefit is understood and shared by all members of the team.
Most of us have heard of employee engagement (if you haven’t, call me right away). Many companies pay for surveys to measure engagement. They do this because they know engaged employees are more productive, creative, and tend to miss less work. Matt was able to get his team engaged. Creating an engaged team isn’t really a mystery. The first step was buy-in. We’ve covered that. The second part was helping his team become more effective. He was able to help his team members grow! Growth is a basic need of life, and Matt was filling that need. Matt helped his team members reduce and eliminate unnecessary and unproductive work so they could focus at the job at hand. They were not learning how to do their jobs; they were learning how to do them more effectively.
Now his team was seeing the results they wanted, and in record time! At the same time, Matt was able to achieve results! By getting the necessary buy-in from his team, and getting them engaged in the process, he got results. Aren’t results the end goal anyway? Matt got results, by leading his team. The members of his squad got results by being more effective and being rewarded for it. The company as a whole benefited from a more efficient and effective team. Everybody is a winner!
Attract and Retain Top Talent
One of the bonus effects of running an efficient and productive company is your ability to attract and retain the best talent. Matt is still amazed how many people want to come work for him. He tells me often that, although other departments are losing people, he has to keep turning people away! I’ll even go with another example. Earlier this year I attended a presentation on how the Ritz Carlton has set the recognized standard for providing customers with world-class service. The “secrets” they use? Leadership and Engagement. The hospitality industry on average, has a turnover rate of around 80%. That means 80% companies typically have to replace 80% of their staff every year. The Ritz Carlton was down to approximately 20%. Imagine the cost savings they enjoy with lower hiring and onboarding costs.
This Week’s Challenge
Imagine how your team or company could thrive if you were able to get similar results that Matt was able to accomplish. If you have multiple departments or groups in your company, imagine how your company would perform if ALL these teams were as efficient and effective as possible. Decide right now to create a company or an organization that produces world-class results so you can be an industry leader!
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Quote of the Week
“The achievements of an organization are the results of the combined effort of each individual.”