Question: I’m the president of a small company. Over the past three years, we have experienced significant growth. Along the way, we have upgraded our technology and expanded our scope of services. We spent this past year refining our work processes and fine-tuned our approach to customer service. Now, I want to turn my attention to the way we manage and develop our people. As we get started, at the top management level, we have been working with a consultant on things like developing a common purpose, creating an effective communication climate, etc. One of our team members has been noticeably uninvolved at these meetings. He comes unprepared and doesn’t participate much. My concern is that if this attitude continues, he is going to send the wrong message regarding our work on building collaboration and participation across the company. What should I do to make sure his behavior doesn’t bring down everyone he interacts with?
Answer: Teams are essential to any organization faced with a growing need to achieve complex goals swiftly and efficiently and, perhaps, with fewer resources. To be effective, the team must stay in touch with these needs. It is important to realize that teams are not a solution to every business challenge, nor should an organization or department create teams just for the sake of having teams.
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