If you want true engagement & enrolment, use the ‘leader-leader’ approach, rather than the ‘leader-follower’ approach. Turn your followers into true leaders, and you’ll get them to ‘full potential’
What happens when 2 members of a Leadership Team don’t get along? Two ExCo members having opposite views or positions. Two functional heads that think of each other as incompetent. Two n-3 ambitioning the same and unique n-2 job.
After the six generic steps to handle dysfunctional behavior, here are some typical cases that require specific actions. Here is your user’s guide – not to say your safety net or your antidote – to handle the 16 most common and typical dysfunctional characters.
The meeting is supposed to start now. Yet half of the participants are not present. And the present half is more busy with finding coffee, chatting or checking their emails. Latecomers at their worst, distractors at their best. Mild dysfunctional behavior? Mild maybe but repetitive and costly! And then, in the middle of your well-thought process, one stands up and things you should be doing differently, putting your process into question and suggesting alternative ways to proceed. And another starts telling an endless story about how it has been done in the past. Process interferes at short, storytellers at length. Serious dysfunctional behavior? Serious and damaging…
You know exactly what your team needs to do. You know precisely how they should do it. But they keep on doing things differently. The wrong ‘what’, the wrong ‘how’, and poor results. If after many sessions of (im)patiently listening and trying to influence them, things don’t change, chances are you are either thinking about buying a book on ‘influencing skills’, or you have decided to make use of your authority to get your point of view implemented. Well – set yourself up for additional moments of disappointment, because in most cases that’s the result you’re most likely to reach.
Executive Committee and Board meetings have an advocacy to inquiry ratio of about 90% to 10%. That means, in our experience, that 9 interventions out of 10 are about explaining one’s opinions, for only 1 being an inquiry about others’ opinions. This results in misalignments, misunderstandings, poor cohesiveness, and occasional unsatisfactory decisions and personal prejudice. Business executives, when in meetings, have long lost their ability to question, to probe, to investigate. One man can change that. If he were still around, we would recommend you to hire him, at Board level or in your Executive Committee.
Successful careers are driven by ‘worksmanship’. Because workmanship is the main component of performance appraisals. Of incentives. Of rewards. This leads to a high performance (individualistic?) culture of KPI’s meet-my-targets. Adding ‘citizenship’ as a second dimension offers a more complete picture and opens up new perspectives on talent management.