Keeping Your Team On The Right Track

 

311973_steam_train Do you ever feel your workplace is like a runaway train, headed downhill with a curve up-ahead, speed is building and you need to do something fast, but don’t know whether you can stop it or if you should just jump off before it flies off the tracks and crashes? Our office has been experiencing a bit of a scary ride lately.

We have recently had some changes take place in our office with one employee moving and working remotely, a new employee coming on board and some position changes. Everyone has been trying to play the catch-up game and we have been out-of-sync with each other and what needed to be done.  We needed to regroup as a team. We are using the “Three Rs” to get things back on track, “reassess, regroup, redirect.

The “Reassess” part is best done by the manager or business owner by talking individually with each staff member to find out what they felt was working and what was not.  Ask the same questions of each member so that you can get specifics and more depth to what the heart of the derailing was caused by.  Each person sees things a bit differently depending on what they do in the office. The receptionist will see things much differently than the office manager or owner, but all views are vitally important in seeing the big picture.  When talking to each person ask what their observations are, NOT, their opinions about how the team is functioning or lack of function.  Write down what the observations are and I bet you will find they are pretty similar from all involved for the most part.  Once you have your list it is time to come up with possible solutions to get things running smoothly again.

In our case we having been having frequent office meetings addressing the issues that are on our list.  We came up with some new ideas to try to solve some of the problems and found that we needed to re-implement some policies that we had let slip under the radar.  As we discussed these things we all felt a surge of new excitement about our office and what we do there.  We set a couple of new goals and gave ourselves deadlines as to when we would complete them.  It was great, we changed the direction we were going.  We were no longer on a runaway train, we were back on track and heading up hill again.  Everyone felt good as we ended our meeting and we were all excited about our new goals and ready to get started on them.

It was interesting though, the week following our regroup/redirect meeting was one of those weeks from “%$&#” (I am sure you have been there). It was amazing, our team’s attitude was great.  We laughed at the end of the first crazy day, thinking no way could tomorrow be worse (we found that we will never say that again, because it was).  Even with all that this “bad” week brought we still managed to meet one of the goals we set.

When Friday came we all were very glad for the weekend break, but not one of us dreaded the thought of coming back on Monday because we were a team with a fresh vision again heading in a positive direction.

08/12/14

4 thoughts on “Keeping Your Team On The Right Track

  1. I think you handled this transition in the perfect way…and the one constant that is clear is that each member trusted that their observations were going to be heard and valued. I think that is a critical component of good leadership and one of the ingredients to successfully managing change. Way to go Tina!

    • Hi Susan, yes it does seem to happen that way doesn’t it? I just will think that things are going great and then the proverbial two -by-four hits me upside the head and everything heads in a spiral downward. It I don’t jump in quick it will only get worse. Ah, the life of a manager, such fun and excitement 🙂

  2. Thank you Mimi, it is always a work in progress when we are working with people. Things change day to day and we need to keep on our toes to keep things moving forward. I think that our past mommy skills come in handy when managing a team, not that our team members are children, but that we have learned to adjust and restructure as our children grew and changed and it has been great Experience to bring to the table.

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