A division of a large global manufacturing company wanted to increase the effectiveness of their senior leadership team. They were facing exponential growth targets that only a high performing team could achieve.
The team leader believed his team had more potential; however, they needed to collaborate more effectively, and leverage the skills, knowledge, and capabilities that existed within each leader. The challenge wasn’t a lack of talent, but rather creating a team culture that was nimble, innovative, hungry, and results-oriented.
Our approach included administering a team culture survey to get a diagnostic on how team members viewed the team against a variety of leadership competencies. We wanted to find out if they saw themselves as having the leadership competencies needed to reach their strategic objectives. The survey results identified the team’s current culture and then compared that culture to an aspirational culture, one that would be most ideal.
Once the gaps were identified, the team decided on two leadership competencies that would have the greatest impact on creating their ideal culture. Each leader committed to the team’s development goal, and then proceeded to create their individual development objectives that were in support of the team’s success.
Based on the competencies identified for high performance, we designed a series of quarterly meetings to increase the level of trust within the team, build greater levels of collaboration skills, manage conflict more effectively, and eliminate the team’s tendency to exhibit artificial harmony. The core skill developed was their ability to give and receive feedback.
The results were significant. The team experienced more productive team meetings and improved collaboration, which resulted in higher productivity. The ability to give and receive feedback increased substantially and the team increased their ability to manage and work with conflict directly.
After the first year, the team went through a strategic planning process that identified their vision, purpose, and leadership competencies for success. The team self-assessed their current capabilities and competencies and mapped out their plans to close the leadership competency gaps. The team is currently in their second year of team development work.