Do you have a Greg?

Greg is a good guy. He works hard and does a good job. In fact, Greg is one of your top performers numbers-wise. If you weren’t his manager he’d probably be the sort of person you spent a fair bit of time with outside of work.

However, he also has a nasty habit of turning up late for work. Not hugely late. The odd ten, fifteen minutes here or there. Now, because Greg is a good employee, this is the sort of thing you might be tempted to overlook.

Unfortunately the rest of your team who do turn up on time, every time have started to notice. You’ve heard murmurings in the staff room and have had a couple of pointed emails from a long standing team member ‘just to let you know Greg was 10 minutes late… again’.

So now you have a problem. If you leave it, your team are going to get more disgruntled and it could cause a major issue. Likewise, you don’t want to upset Greg by confronting him about a relatively minor issue. He’s one of your strongest and most productive team members after all, the last thing you want is to ruin his morale and tank his output.

There is a way to solve this dilemma and keep all the parties happy but it’s not going to be easy, unless you know what you’re doing.

If this sort of situation sounds familiar and you’re not sure how to deal with it, Insights Discovery is the solution.

Here’s why:

Insights Discovery helps teams have more open and honest conversations.

Trust matters.

It’s fair to say a team where the members trust but don’t like one another will outperform a team with a busy social schedule but very little trust.

Trust isn’t something you can force into a team. No amount of teambuilding days and staff socials will build authentic, bulletproof trust between colleagues. It’s something that has to be embedded into an organisation’s ethos and structure from the ground up and your people will look to you as a leader or manager as an example. One of the best ways to build authentic trust is by always having open and honest conversations.

Open and honest conversations are vital but if you handle them poorly it can end very badly. There’s a skill in identifying an issue, explaining it and offering a solution in a non-confrontational manner. This is even more tricky when the conversation relates to poor performance or behaviour.  All it takes to turn a minor issue into a major one is one misplaced turn of phrase or using the wrong communication style.

Done well open and honest conversations allow everyone to get involved and be heard. You and our team will feel confident sharing differences without one side dominating the conversation or anyone losing their temper. This in turn builds trust by creating a safe environment where everyone feels comfortable sharing their point of view, unhindered by the fear of upsetting colleagues.

Insights Discovery will give you the tools you need to effortlessly navigate tricky conversations. Everyone has a communication profile and Insights Discovery makes learning yours and your team’s easy with a simple colour system. You’ll use real world examples of when things didn’t go so well in your team to identify common trigger points based on communication styles and personality types.

Insights Discovery can’t build trust overnight, particularly if this is an area you’ve struggled with in the past. What it will do is lay the foundations for you and your team to build upon in the weeks and months to come. If you keep at it, you’ll be having conversations that are the envy of even long established teams. Better yet, you’ll reap the rewards for years to come.

Insights Discovery helps you deliver more effective feedback

Everybody hates tick box appraisals and coaching sessions. They take a huge chunk out of an otherwise productive day only to do little more than annoy everyone involved. Yet so many organisations persist with feedback sessions where nothing of substance gets discussed, just to fulfil an arbitrary ‘development plan’.

Appraisals aren’t the only area where feedback that should be given, isn’t. Any leader/follower interaction has the potential to be a developmental experience for both parties. Most employees want to do a good job and crave honest, actionable feedback. Feedback sessions are only something to fear when they’re done badly.

We’ve all had managers who struggled to give decent feedback. This could be for any number of reasons. Perhaps they were overbearing, maybe they were too cautious and didn’t say anything of substance or they might have seemed disengaged or robotic. These issues have one thing in common- communication.

In order to deliver more effective feedback, you need to be a confident communicator. The good news is even if you think communication isn’t your strong suit it’s a skill. Just like any other skill it can be practiced and refined. It all starts with understanding how the way you communicate affects the people on the receiving end. Knowing this will contextualise any difficulties you’ve experienced giving or receiving feedback in the past. Once you’ve worked through this you’ll find entering into tricky conversations far less difficult.

Insights Discovery provides a proven framework for delivering even the most challenging feedback sensitively, succinctly and effectively. The Insights Discovery colour profiles intuitively describe all the personalities in your office. When you can read your people you’ll be able to effortlessly adapt your communication style to deliver engaging, actionable feedback that your team will crave.

Insights Discovery raises performance through greater transparency

Sometimes things go wrong. Maybe one of your team members forgot to set up a standing charge to a long term client, costing you thousands. Or a grievance process was mismanaged resulting in a highly experienced employee leaving the business.

Lots of businesses don’t respond well to things going wrong. Generally, they do one of two things:

  • Blame the employee and discipline/dismiss them
  • Blame the system, do nothing and experience the same error in six months’ time

These approaches don’t work because they don’t address the underlying cause of the mistake. It’s vanishingly rare for an error to be wholly the fault of an individual or system. The truth, as they say, is always somewhere in the middle.

Getting to the bottom of a mistake is possibly the greatest communication challenge out there. The only way you’re going to get the information you need is by speaking to the people involved. People are naturally defensive when talking about their mistakes and emotions can run high. But if you’re serious about using your mistakes as learning opportunities and not repeating them, it’s in your interest to understand the root causes. Only when you’ve done that can you effectively put plans in place to prevent them reoccurring.

If you’re going to create a culture of learning, you first need to develop transparency in your workplace. You and your team need to feel comfortable and safe sharing bad news with one another. If your people feel they will be judged or unfairly reprimanded, at best they won’t actively approach you with problems and at worst they’ll try to cover them up.

Insights Discovery will help you develop a transparent culture where people are confident to share their struggles and missteps. Errors are part and parcel of our working life and Insights Discovery will give you and your team the skills they need to have those difficult conversations. When you’re having them mistakes won’t be repeated and problems can be caught early, long before they spiral into catastrophe.

Will Insights Discovery help us with our difficult conversations?

That all depends on you, your team and your organisations.

Insights Discovery is a proven system that can help anyone from SMEs to large Public Sector bodies manage their difficult conversations. Thing is, you have to be willing to let us get under your skin and confront issues of trust and transparency head on.

This isn’t always a comfortable experience to say the least. However, our clients tell us the long term gain is worth a little short term pain.

Let’s face it, you’re probably not fully bought in off of the back of this article but if you’re curious to learn a bit more about what we do, you only have to ask!

We’ll answer whatever questions you have openly and honestly and we’ll also ask you lots of questions to make sure we’re a good fit. Insights Discovery is powerful but you need to be fully bought in for it to work to its full potential.

If that hasn’t scared you off, fill out a contact form and we’ll be in touch at a time to suit you.

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