High-Performance Teams vs Average Teams

Each organiation has teams, even if the teams aren't formalized. Think about each department of the organization as being a separate team within the organization.

Almost every organization wants high-performing teams but most organizations aren't even sure of what 'high-performance' actually means. 

High-performance in relation to teams, is a group of individuals who are united in vision, goals, skills, risk, and who outperform other similar teams.

Average performing teams are a collection of individuals who are only united because they have to be, they see it as a means to an end. They're not truly committed to each other or to the objectives they need to achieve, and they still think as individuals, not as a unit. This is something that team-building exercises cannot fix.

The average performing team will at times achieve their targets, and that's the problem, they never outperform the objectives set or even themselves, and they don't desire to. 

These are all common in high-performing teams:

• Clear vision

• Clear mission

• Clear objectives/goals

• Shared responsibility 

• Interdependence

• Individual accountability

• Effective resolution of conflicts

• Shared wins and shared losses

• Effective communication 

The following are a few ways to break a high-performance team or to downgrade them to an average performing team:

1. Give them an ambiguous vision, mission, and goals.

2. Give them objectives that don't challenge or stretch their capabilities.

3. Adding a new member to their team, one who isn't intrinsically motivated or interdependent.

The effectiveness of a high-performing team lies in the results they bring in. To be factual, even a 1 or 5% increase in turnover or sales compared to previous teams or quarters, would be considered as high-performing. It's the incremental increase of progress, efficiency, effectiveness, and money which proves that you have a high-performing team on your hands.

Motivation Doesn’t Lead to Change

What comes to mind when you hear the word "motivation"?

In most cases, you're thinking of a well-dressed, well-spoken man up on a stage, telling you to believe in yourself and telling you that you can live the life of your dreams...right?

Although motivation has its part to play in the goal-achievement process, it certainly isn't everything. In fact, motivation cannot stand on its own. This is why so many people who listen to motivational talks will tell you that they left feeling amazing and uplifted but a week after they reverted back to their old ways, because most motivational talks are presenting motivation itself as the key to change, and that's not true.

The key to change, sustainable change, is consistent actions. 

I always make this joke about motivation when I'm booked to do motivational talks...I ask the audience about what they want to achieve, then I say to them "motivation is the fuel for the vehicle that takes you to where you want to be" then I remind them to focus on what they want to achieve while I'm motivating them and then I ask them to say out loud "I am motivated to........" I help shift the focus from me as a speaker to them and their goals because that is what's going to sustain them...not my talk but their understanding of what they really want to achieve. I'm just there to put some gas in their tanks but they still have to drive the car.

With that being said, we need to focus on behavior and not just on inspiration. How can we experience new results if we don't change our attitude, mindset, and behavior?

Therefore, motivation ought to be supplemented with actionable takeaways and homework.

This is the only way to encourage change in your own life and in your organization.

Employee Engagement vs Company Values

Andrea Piacquadio

Employee Engagement vs Company Values

Employee engagement has become somewhat of a buzzword, but what is employee engagement?

Well, there's no clear definition that everyone agrees on but the essence of every definition is based on the employees' emotional connection to the organization and their work.

A study by Harvard Business Review showed how 71% of managers surveyed, agreed that employee engagement was one of the keys to overall organizational success.

Dr. John Demartini, a world-renowned human behavioral psychologist, states that we behave and live our lives based on our highest values. 

Low employee engagement is created by the incongruency between organizational values and employee values. Likewise, high employee engagement is fostered when organizational values are married to employee values. This is by no means the only way to increase employee engagement but it's the best place to start.

The fight for high employee engagement needs to first happen at the recruiting phase where the applicant's values can be assessed to see whether or not they will be a good fit when it comes to integrating them into the company culture. Then the fight for higher employee engagement is taken further when the organization takes its own values seriously by behaving in line with them - employee buy in will be higher if this is done by executives - and by promoting those behaviors as part of the organization's brand identity.

Ever heard of the phrase "it's hard to teach an old dog new tricks"? Well, it's equally hard to raise employee engagement when one is already an employee. The earlier an organization can fight for employee engagement, the better the results they'll experience in getting and retaining top talent.