16 February 2009

Pushing the performance – Is it easy?

Pushing the performance of others is difficult and it is even more difficult to push one’s own performance. Many of the managers/leaders (mid-level, so far I have seen) have a blurred vision on pushing the performance. I could see that in many informal chats across organizations. First, they are poor are in setting objectives and poorer in tracking those objectives and poorest in measuring the results. When people are so poor in many important aspects, it is quite natural that the end results are devastating and shocking. How come a guy who passed degree in distinction underperforms not in comparison with people across board but rather to his abilities? Also, people are so unmerciful to say “he/she is having attitude problem”. Here are my thoughts on creating a high performance team.

I don’t really see that this is a generation gap between “Gen-X” and “Gen-y”. It is more a sort of inability in leading a team. The guys who are managing team should understand that team building, pushing the performance and creating a high performance team is a long-term process. High performance teams cannot be created in silos. High performance team is an outcome of trust, understanding and constant urge or thirst to excel.

Trust is a core term that brings understanding among teammates and the understanding leads to collaboration, then creates a thirst to excel. Finally the thirst reaches “The Tipping Point” and from then on it is contagious. It is easier said than done. Because, it takes a lot to reach a tipping point. That is why, the trust, the understanding and the thirst are important.

People need not be given promotions, people need not be given salary hikes, people need not be given incentives and bonuses, and people need not be recognized, if you can make people to realize their potential and it would be great if you can constantly do that. When you do something that you never done before, it excites you. When you can create an excitement everyday, believe me, your folks are going to have festivals and they will enjoy the work. But many organizations are not doing this and that is why employees feel that they are in uninspiring organization. Once you make people to realize their potential, it creates a bond between you and your team. This bond, over a period of time matures into a “trust”.

Still the trust is mutual between two entities. But for the external world it may manifest or may not. Also, though trust is good, sometimes it is very rough. Though trust is superior, it is blunt sometimes. So, the next level “understanding” blossoms once the trust is built. Once you have the trust and understanding, the team becomes a positive battlefield, a healthy competition comes out of each teammates. This is the tipping point. Once the tipping point is reached, it is sure that many of your teammates will accept other’s and whole heartedly work towards the team’s agenda. They put team before their personal likings. Then the team becomes a “super conductor”. It is quite challenging but it is worth doing – for the sake of mankind, your organization, your team and you.

If you are focused on building a high performance team it is easy to create not just one but numerous provided you understand what it takes to create a high performance team and it is takes time.

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