Archive for Team Performance

Having Meaningful Conversations in the Workplace

Sheridan Resolutions

Having Meaningful Conversations in the Workplace| 12.2.20

Effective communication results in minimising potential misunderstanding, creates unity as everyone is aligned or clear on the views or aims of another individual or company. An effective communicator understands their audience, chooses an appropriate communication channel, hones their message to this channel and encodes the message to reduce misunderstanding by the receiver(s). Overall, this results in improved employee and business relationships.

Choosing the right mode of communication, that is delivered in the right way is critical across an organisation, but arguably none more important than between a line manager and a direct report. These parties have an on-going relationship and one that is built on trust and respect, so therefore meaningful conversations are imperative. Delivering feedback effectively or following up with a direct report on a missed deadline, is a skill, and one that all too often, line managers are expected to know how to do. Here are some tips to ensure you are ‘BOOST’ing your feedback:

• Balanced – Feedback should look at both positive and negative aspects of an
individual’s performance, not just one or the other. All achievements should be
duly recognised. It motivates employees to give their best every time. If there are
any areas for improvement, work together to come up with ideas of how to
overcome them.

• Observed – Feedback should be based on first-hand observations rather than reports from others or even your own feelings. Managers who are directly responsible for their team members have a more precise understanding of how a team member performs. They are thus able to give more constructive feedback based on their own observations.

• Objective – Being objective allows the communicator to be constructive in their communication and think about the audience(s) and what is important for them to hear or take from the communication.

• Specific – Make sure your messaging is to the point. Vague feedback gives no direction and can give confusing messages.

• Timely – Communication should also be timely. For example, if feedback is given at the time, or shortly after someone’s actions, this has a much more positive impact as it is given in context, is relevant and likely to be more accurate.

If delivered in the right way, communication allows you to take others with you, ensuring all relevant parties are aligned and clear on the necessary actions or steps ahead. So, don’t forget to communicate to your direct team, wider team, stakeholders and suppliers. Ensure everyone is on the same path. Most importantly, ensure your teams are equipped to do the same, give them the skills necessary to be an effective leader.

If you would like to provide some support and coaching for your line managers to ensure they are having meaningful conversations with their direct reports, contact us to see how we can help by emailing us at: info@sheridanresolutions.com

Posted in: Executive Coaching, Team Performance, Leadership Development, Our Approach, News

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Why people should be at the heart of your business.

Why people should be at the heart of your business| 28/02/20

Simon Sinek, author of “Leaders Eat Last” states, “It is not the demands of the job that cause the most stress, but the degree of control workers feel they have throughout their day. The studies also found that the effort required by a job is not in itself stressful, but rather the imbalance between the effort we give and the reward we feel. Put simply: less control, more stress.”

So how should we take care of our employees? We could start by creating a working environment within which people are engaged and motivated; a place where they want to work. As a result, we improve productivity and reduce sick leave (according to the Office of National Statistics, in 2018 141.4 million working days were lost due to UK employees being absent).

Engaging with your employees makes them feel appreciated and valued. You shouldn’t just rely on your line managers to do this; it should come from all levels of the organisation. Create an inclusive culture than enables employees to feel empowered, respected and wanted. ‘Employee Engagement’ and ‘Well-being Policies’ are now commonplace in corporations across the globe, as they see the value that it can bring. In fact, Gallup reports that companies with high engagement scores perform better than their counterparts in key operational areas like productivity, absenteeism, turnover, safety and quality incidents, customer metrics, and profitability.

Providing employees with flexible benefits that enable them select health and wellness plans such as contributions to fitness equipment or clubs really does go a long way in boosting employee retention and output. Benefits go beyond reward and package schemes. Many benefits are also created within the workplace, such as working within an organisation that has set a clear vision and strategy. No one wants to work in a business that is running around in circles with no end game. Being clear on your vision and expectations means your people are all aligned and on the same path. Ensuring you have the right processes and systems in place also means that the day job for your employees is more efficient and therefore rewarding. Employees do not want to get bogged down by unnecessary red tape. Giving your employees the right skills and knowledge will also motivate and engage with them. By investing in capability development, not only will your teams be better equipped to do an outstanding job, but they also will exude confidence knowing they have been trained and feel valued as the organisation has invested in training for them.

So, put your people first. Your teams can either make or break your business, so make sure you have your employees at the heart of what you do, and that you are nurturing, caring, developing and investing in them by providing a work environment where people can thrive, grow and be happy.

If you need support in ensuring you are creating the right business environment for your teams to grow, contact us to see how we can help by emailing us at: info@sheridanresolutions.com

Posted in: Team Performance, Leadership Development, Our Approach, News

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Caroline Sheridan from Sheridan Resolutions appears in Leaders Council podcast alongside Lord Blunkett.

The Leaders Council of Great Britain and Northern Ireland is currently in the process of talking to leadership figures from across the nation in an attempt to understand this universal trait and what it means in Britain and Northern Ireland today.

Caroline Sheridan from Sheridan Resolutions was invited onto an episode of the podcast, which also included an interview with Lord Blunkett. Host Jonathan White asked both guests a series of questions about leadership and the role it has played in their careers to date.

Jonathan White commented, ‘Hosting a show like this, where you speak to genuine leaders who have been there and done it, either on a national stage or within a crucial industry sector, is an absolute honour.’

Lord Blunkett, chairman of The Leaders Council of Great Britain and Northern Ireland said, ‘I think the most informative element of each episode is the first part, where Jonathan White is able to sit down with someone who really gets how their industry works and knows how to make their organisation tick. Someone who’s there day in day out working hard and inspiring others. That’s what leadership is all about.’

You can listen to the podcast in full click here

Posted in: Team Performance, Our Approach, News

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The Importance of Unlocking Talent

Sheridan Resolutions

The Importance of Unlocking Talent | 13/02/20

 

Business leaders often refer to their people as ‘their greatest asset’, but yet we see many organisations not taking the time to invest in their employees. That investment needn’t be costly either, it could just be some quality time with their line manager to gain feedback or guidance, or access to training to enhance their capability.

Research shows that people now rate the “opportunity to learn” as among their top reasons for taking a job.¹ Business leaders know that changes in technology, longevity, work practices and business models have created a tremendous demand for continuous, lifelong development.

Whilst some businesses are taking steps to deliver learning opportunities to their people, it is evident this is still quite a challenge for the majority of businesses as learning development was cited as the top-rated challenge amongst HR and business professionals in the Deloitte’s 2019’s Global Human Capital Trends survey.

“Our top-rated trend for 2019 is the need to improving learning and development. 86% of respondents in our global survey rated this issue as important or very important, with only 10% of respondents, feeling ‘very ready’ to address it”

So why is this such a challenge? Especially when you consider that re-training can cost one-sixth of the cost of hiring an external candiate².

The biggest challenge is identifying the needs for each employee. It is a skill to be able to evaluate direct reports and identify what support, guidance or capability development they need to enhance their performance. That is why we support many of our clients in developing line managers to have effective conversations with their teams. Providing skills to line managers in turn makes a positive impact on their direct reports and drives both individual and collective excellence. A move towards team-based leadership usually requires coaching new leadership styles. Team members need to know how and when to relinquish control and, in so doing, to show respect for the differing perspectives and approaches of those who work for them. This helps keep all levels within the team motivated.

At Sheridan Resolutions we provide a range of programmes to support leaders get the most out of their teams, such as our mentoring for growth course or our certified ILM management programmes. We tailor each programme to the needs of the individual or team to ensure our clients get the most from their people.

Contact us to see how we can help you unlock your talent at info@sheridanresolutions.com

¹ Josh Bersin “New Research” LinkedIn Nov18
² Josh Bersin study with General Assembly, forthcoming

 

 

Posted in: Team Performance, Our Approach, News

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Keeping global teams focused and engaged…

There’s a big emphasis currently on a growing challenge – managing remote teams and keeping them focused and engaged. Global teams have the potential to help organizations reach new markets and provide a seamless brand experience for customers across the world. But for them to work well, team leaders need to make sure all members feel connected and engaged, regardless of their location or culture.

How can we make global teams work more effectively? The further apart we are, the closer we need to be – and feel. Remote leaders and disparate teams, once unusual, are now commonplace. The international perspective of even smaller businesses, allied with new technologies, has made it necessary to work collaboratively across distributed teams.

However, at Sheridan Resolutions we think that too many organisations focus their efforts on the processes of making global teams work, but take for granted the management practices required for success. It’s important to put extra effort toward managing what remains an essentially human challenge. A move towards team-based leadership, particularly when teams are distributed, usually requires a careful and clear focus on coaching new leadership styles.

Distributed team members need to have sharp antennae around how and when to relinquish control and, in so doing, show extra respect for the differing perspectives and approaches of those who work for them. This helps to keep all members of the team motivated.

Keep looking at our blogsLinkedIn and twitter for more details on this and other subjects and at our website – www.sheridanresolutions.com.

And don’t forget to Sign up Here  for the Sheridan Weekly. It’s free and you can unsubscribe at any time.

Caroline Sheridan, Chair, Workplace and Employment CMC group and Founder of Sheridan Resolutions

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Teams need both individual and collective impetus

There’s a lovely lead article in this week’s Sheridan Weekly about team development. For teams to become more than the sum of their parts, it says, effective team development requires the nurturing of both individual and collective skills, as well as behaviours and attitudes beneficial for team dynamics, cohesion and trust.

Collective and individual development needs to be aligned and synchronised. Team performance increases when individual members are progressing, while collectively working towards a team development.

This very much echoes the themes of our recent Sheridan Resolutions Breakfast Summit Series on Team Coaching, aimed at HR thought leaders and senior business decision-makers – and a forthcoming paper on the subject.

Keep looking at our blogsLinkedIn and twitter for more details. And don’t forget to Sign up Here  for the Sheridan Weekly. It’s free and you can unsubscribe at any time.

Caroline Sheridan, Chair, Workplace and Employment CMC group and Founder of Sheridan Resolutions

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The growing importance of Team Coaching

Here at Sheridan Resolutions, we’ve been very excited for some time about our 2019 Breakfast Summit Series aimed at HR thought leaders and senior business decision-makers. The first of these, earlier in April, dealt with Team Coaching, particularly focusing on helping senior teams to work more effectively together.  This subject is clearly emerging as major source of interest for clients.

The excellent speaker at the event was Ty Francis, an expert on the concept of systemic team coaching. Ty pointed out that one of the issues in this emerging field related definition. The latest research from Henley Business School has identified 15 different definitions of team coaching by leaders in this field – flagging difference in the purpose, objectives, scope, application and orientation of team coaching, as well as differences in understanding the coach’s remit, focus and required capabilities.

It’s also important to understand the difference between team coaching and systemic team coaching. The former is a process of raising a team’s level of awareness of its functioning, while equipping the team to change its behaviours in a way that is more focused collectively, in service of higher performance. The latter addresses the connections between teams, helping to develop collective leadership to more effectively engage all stakeholders in the joint transformation of the business.

The breakfast went into depth on the growing importance of team coaching and received excellent feedback from those who attended for a clear understanding and set of ideas as to next steps. We want to share this knowledge for this and future events, so for each event in the Sheridan Resolutions Breakfast Summit Series we will also produce a Thought Leadership Paper to help reinforce key learnings, as well as using it to stimulate wider discussion on each topic.

The “Team Coaching” paper will become available in the coming weeks so keep looking at our blogsLinkedIn and twitter for more details. And don’t forget to Sign up Here  for the Sheridan Weekly. It’s free and you can unsubscribe at any time.

Caroline Sheridan, Chair, Workplace and Employment CMC group and Founder of Sheridan Resolutions

Posted in: Team Performance

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The growing power of team coaching

At Sheridan Resolutions, we’re very excited about our forthcoming 2019 Breakfast Summit Series aimed at HR thought leaders and senior business decision-makers. The first of these, later this month, will deal with Team Coaching, particularly focusing on helping senior teams to work more effectively together. The key speaker at that event will be Ty Francis, an expert on the concept of systemic team coaching.

Team coaching is so important – it involves a single coach working with a group of managers or executives. This gives members of the group the opportunity to stretch beyond their current abilities. And by partnering with the team in the context of its everyday work challenges, the coach can introduce new ideas and see opportunities to improve team performance as a whole. One aspect of this, better collaboration, is featured in today’s Sheridan Weekly.

Team coaching is on the increase. It can be confused with team facilitation, offsite away-days, etc. We want you to have a clear set of practical ideas as to next steps. So for each event in the Sheridan Resolutions Breakfast Summit Series we will also produce a Thought Leadership Paper to help reinforce key learnings, as well as using it to stimulate wider discussion on each topic.

Keep looking at our blogs, LinkedIn and twitter for more details. And don’t forget to Sign up Here  for the Sheridan Weekly. It’s free and you can unsubscribe at any time.

Caroline Sheridan, Chair, Workplace and Employment CMC group and Founder of Sheridan Resolutions

 

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Taking team or group decisions, by David Clutterbuck

The Abilene effect (where a solution is adopted that no-one really favours, but no-one feels sufficiently opposed to, to go against the majority) happens remarkably frequently, even in high performing teams. It is actually quite easy to prevent, with the use of a simple procedure.

The starting point is to discuss the question: “What are we trying to achieve with this decision?” Or, to put it another way, “How does this decision align with our collective purpose?”

The second step is the question: “What are the key criteria we should apply to this decision?” There may be some disagreement, but it is normally possible to identify a small number of factors that everyone agrees are important. Issues that are important only to a few people are captured as a separate list.

The third step is to define clearly the alternative ways forward. If there are no alternatives, this may be a sign that the issue has not been given enough consideration. On average, a decision based on two or more alternatives is more than half again as likely to be seen positively in retrospect, than one without any alternatives.

Now, taking each alternative in turn, everyone scores the items on these two lists, using the same scale, in answer to the question: “To what extent would this solution meet each of these criteria?”

Sharing the scores gives a reasonably accurate picture of the spread of opinion and why people are minded more towards one solution than another. It also increases the chances that potential downsides of each of the alternatives are brought into the open and discussed, so that the team can install appropriate contingency measures. And it makes sure that minority views and information held by only a few members are acknowledged and taken into account.

It may sound time consuming – and it is. But even more time consuming is unravelling poor decisions. In deciding whether to use this approach on a decision, therefore, one further question is helpful: “What is the potential cost (in times of money, time, energy and so on) of getting this wrong?”

Lastly, the backstop question: “How confident are we that this is a good decision?” If team members are unsure, but still trying to maintain a sense of unity, an honest response here will enable the team to dig more deeply until there is genuine agreement.

Those six key questions again:

  • What is the potential cost (in times of money, time, energy and so on) of getting this wrong?
  • What are we trying to achieve with this decision?
  • What are the key criteria we should apply?
  • What alternatives are we looking at?
  • To what extent does each solution meet the criteria?
  • How confident are we that this is a good decision?

 

Professor David Clutterbuck

Coaching and Mentoring International

Posted in: Team Performance

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How to make global teams work effectively

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How can we make global teams work more effectively? The further apart we are, the closer we need to be – and feel. Remote leaders and disparate teams, once unusual, are now commonplace. The international perspective of even smaller businesses, allied with new technologies, has made it necessary to work collaboratively across distributed teams.

However, too many organisations focus their efforts on the processes of making global teams work, but take for granted the management practices required for success. It’s important to put extra effort toward managing what remains an essentially human challenge. A move towards team-based leadership, particularly when teams are distributed, usually requires a careful and clear focus on coaching new leadership styles.

Distributed team members need to have sharp antennae around how and when to relinquish control and, in so doing, show extra respect for the differing perspectives and approaches of those who work for them. This helps to keep all members of the team motivated.

Sign up here for the Sheridan Weekly

Caroline Sheridan, Chair, Workplace and Employment CMC group and Founder of Sheridan Resolutions.

Email caroline@sheridanresolutions.com

Posted in: Team Performance

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