Managing People: What are we going to do about Joe? #3

We are continuing our series based on The Goal by Eliyahu M Goldratt and the Theory of Constraints. {This series was co-written with Brad Stillahn.}

Brad: “There are tons of books and articles written about leadership and managing people, yet it remains the number one problem for most organizations. Is TOC’s solution necessary?”

Dr. Lisa: “Yes. Managing organizations conventionally leads to all kinds of negative side effects that TOC simply eliminates. But there are a lot of other good tools and techniques that can help, too, especially when the leader is getting re-engaged with managing people.”

Brad: “At my recent Vistage Retreat, I facilitated my group through an evaluation of “The Five Dysfunctions of a Team”. As you know, the book by that name, written by Patrick Lencioni, has been very popular, and there is a companion workshop that a team can go through. The Five Dysfunctions are, progressively:
1. Absence of Trust
2. Fear of Conflict
3. Lack of Commitment
4. Avoidance of Accountability
5. Inattention to Results
We thought this model was helpful, and the team assessment was particularly good.”

Dr. Lisa: “That’s a good example. In TOC, we would call that ‘agreeing on the problem’. That team assessment is not threatening. And it can tell you what your team feels are the critical issues to address. But the exercises in the workbook are not sufficient to really solve the structural problems. Fine, have the management team take the team assessment, and have the leader lead a discussion of where the team is, but then the leader needs to dig in and change the policies, procedures, and measures that drive behavior.”

Brad: “Well said. I like that because all too often, leaders jump to a solution without really understanding, deeply, the problem they are trying to solve. Having the management team better understand their problem is the first step to buy-in.”

If you would like your management team to the take a complimentary “The Five Dysfunctions of a Team” team assessment, contact Brad Stillahn for the survey. Once all of the confidential surveys are returned to Brad, you will receive the team summary.

Here’s to maximizing YOUR profits!

Dr Lisa Lang

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