Team building is on my mind this month as we work to open our HUB. I have a vision of a place where everyone feels ownership, where they take on projects and put on events. A collective sharing and supporting each other so everyone is more successful.
I read Ants at Work by Deborah Gordon.”The basic mystery about ant colonies,” begins Gordon, who teaches at Stanford, “is that there is no management.” How, then, do colonies exhibit such high degrees of organization? Individual ants manage their incredibly complex colonies with no one in charge. Can our HUB be like that?
Here are some thoughts
HR is not team building
HR is about policy such as sick days, hours, vacation, pay etc. There may be policy around training allowances, and feedback about what skills need to be ‘improved’.
Team building is a shared vision about the greater good, empowering people to be their best and giving them the tools to do that.
It’s a training issue
I was complaining to my mastermind group, yet again, that my employees weren’t taking initiative despite, what I thought of as the right incentives to do so. One of the other members said it right out, “If they aren’t doing what you want them to do, it’s a training issue.”
That stopped me. I thought about other projects and realized it was a pattern. A pattern with me in the middle each time. So it was and remains, a training issue.
The more I look into it, the more I see it comes back to the same answers. Create an experience that makes it easy. Inspire with great stories. Make expectations clear. Provide the tools, including training.
What does that training look like? Talking it over. Letting mistakes happen and not freaking out. Sharing other stories about how they or I handled similar situations in the past. Having people and resources they can tap into. What else?
This remains a weak spot for me.