BLOG 010 – CLARITY IN EACH OF YOUR DISCUSSIONS
Whether you are a Manager, Team Leader, or a member of a Team, everyone needs to ensure there is clarity in the team. This needs repeating, everyone needs to ensure there is clarity in the team.
Have you ever been part of a team where you find out later people on the team had different understandings of what needed to be done? If you see young kids playing sports like hockey, soccer, baseball, and football, you can immediately tell who on the team has no idea what needs to be done, they are completely unclear of what is expected of them. For teams at work, many times the misunderstandings and un-clarity are identified at the next meeting, after some of the next steps have been done, and that causes a whole other set of issues within the group.
So, what is a simple process to ensure there is clarity in your discussions?
Well, the first thing to consider is the type of structure you want during the discussion. There are times when you need to run your team as a flat structure (everyone an equal) and others times when you need to run it as an expanded structure (everyone structured based on their level of responsibility to the organization, for example organizational chart structure). When your team is meeting and in the brainstorming / defining of expectations and processes part of the discussion, consider using the flat structure.
When meetings are happening, everyone needs to feel comfortable contributing AND asking for clarity. When they know that everyone is an equal at the meeting, and that everyone feels comfortable asking questions to ensure clarity, you have an exponentially better opportunity to succeed past your expectations. In order to make everyone feel comfortable asking for clarity, you may want to let the team know;
“If you believe the question(s) you want to ask are relevant to the discussion then ask away. There are no bad questions… only bad answers. We have too many good people at this discussion and I don’t want to let anyone down because of the word we have chosen to explain things.”
Now, this may sound simple. And the truth is it is simple, but so is eating less and many of us know that’s not as easy as it sounds. So, how do you find out if the team has clarity? Towards the end of the meeting, have everyone spend 1 minute identifying what they have to do after leaving the meeting and “why” they have to do it. For each individual it is like a final reminder they give themselves. For the Team Leader, it lowers their stress as they hear that the team knows what to do to meet the expectations on the team, or because they know there is still some lack of clarity before everyone begins doing the tasks they believe are accurate. They all have to leave having the same game plan.
An additional piece of information that is a bonus for Team Leaders, Team leaders get to see who has passion on the team and who may not have the passion needed to be on the team. This is invaluable as Team Leaders continually evaluate and make changes to the team (for example, moving tasks to different people if it appears to be better suited for someone else), or how they communicate with the team, to get amazing performances.
So, what’s preventing you from ensuring each team member has 1 minute the end of the meeting to define what they have to do after the end of the meeting and why?
It’s just 1 minute…. It’s such a simple step.
And that’s what we are all about at Managing Made Simple…. making managing simple.
Till We Meet Again…
Managing Made Simple