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"Annoy your colleague more often"

As Management, we had a fantastic time. A benevolent, motivated and dynamic team of 6 people at the helm of an innovative print company. At least, we thought so. What we did not realize was that a lot of energy was lost. We actually didn't understand each other so well. There was also little insight into the real motivations, interests and passions of the individuals within the team. Let alone that we knew how to best use our powers. There were functions and responsibilities, objectives aimed at turnover, KPIs and costs. But also a lot of frustration and annoyance, uncertainty and inefficiency. We often did not achieve the intended result.

In 2013 we started a process with the Management Team at Out of Area, which started with an offsite in the Voeren region, Belgium. The Out of Area approach offered us insight. A lot of insight. This was not about functions or hierarchy, general management skills or communication training. It was about how you really form a strong team. Who brings what to the team? What do we do? How are we most effective? Great insight into each other's (preferred) behavior, accepted weaknesses and unacceptable weaknesses. And the insight that annoying each other reflects the diversity of the team, the strength. This requires a basis of trust. Understanding what trust means and actually feeling it made a huge step forward in the development of the team. Out of Area brought this up and provided the framework for discussing, interpreting, understanding, explaining, engaging in constructive conflicts and taking responsibility. This is a condition for defining and pursuing a common goal. A kind of compass that ensured that we included all directions in our plans (result, process, collaboration, passion). A healthy breeding ground.

The authentic, no-nonsense and above all sincere approach has led to important and lasting changes within RPI. In addition to the Management Team, teams elsewhere in the organization have also completed a program. Always tailor-made, always perfectly in line with the need after a thorough intake. The effect is visible everywhere in the organization. There is more energy. Problems are tackled as a team and there is always a common goal, not individual gain. Communication and mutual relationships have improved and cooperation has been lifted to a higher level. I think that many companies underestimate the importance of an open culture where people can be hard on the content and gentle on the relationship. A culture where everyone in the organization can take a vulnerable position and experiences his contribution as important and relevant. For us a condition for success!


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