Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Coaching for 4th quarter performance

With Q3 finished we need to take a quick stock of our team and see how we are set up for the fourth quarter ride home to finish out the year.

Here's a quick strategy to  put into action to make sure your team finishes on a high note for this year.

Take a pen and paper and list all your team members, then make a grid  of one to five, this grid will later represent our goals for each of our team members. Take a few moment to appraise each team member and how they are progressing for each of their goals. Rate them one through five.

Now look through your simple matrix and identify all the ones and circle them, these represent our biggest issues  with each member. Any one have more than one one??  Then he is your primary coaching target, place a one next to his row. Similarly work through the team. At the end of this process you will have a list of who needs to be coached quickly to bring back on track all the way through to the members who are going along great.

Schedule some one on one time with each member starting with the person who scored poorest.
Take them aside, identify what they're doing well and give some feedback in a constructive manner on areas they can improve, especially look at their behaviours and those they can address. Be sure to keep the discussion positive, after all we have a few months of performance to go  to get ourself setup to finish the year on a strong note.

As the leaders of the team it's our duty to steer the team to success, by taking some positive coaching action now.  This way we can be sure our team will meet their goals and finish the year in a strong position.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Team stressed - release the pressure

How is your team feeling?  Full of beans, or a little drained? One of our important tasks is to constantly monitor the health of our team members and step in and take action if needed.

Commonly when your team has been running hard for an extended time is the development of stress. If  you can identify stress early and take some remedial action, then your team will be better for it.

Many leaders think this is a difficult task, at the end of the day just keep your eyes and ears open and you'll see and hear the signs. Team members telling you they can't make deadlines, members hesitate to take on any extra activities and general legarthy.

So what to do?  If you catch it early perhaps its simple, take the team for a dinner or lunch,  if they've been putting in some long hours then maybe bringing the partners along can achieve.  Involving the partners often helps achieve some extra things, it shows the partners  that you work with normal people, plus the partners  get to too also share their feelings.

In this environment  it  is important for you to publicly thank everyone and their contributions.

If things have got further on then it is time for you to either add resources to the team to lighten the load or prioritise the work your team is doing to make it more manageable.

As team leaders  it's our job to keep on top of the feelings within our team and take actions to keep them at a good level so we can continue to meet the challenges everyday.