New Year Team Resolutions.

I’m not sure who first coined the phrase, “what you tolerate you teach,” but when one of our top speakers, Mark Robb, suggested it as a key factor in underperforming people and teams it certainly resonated with several of the agency owners gathered for one of our Group meetings last month.

All too often, business owners and team leaders shy away from addressing people issues in the hope they will resolve themselves – my experience is that they rarely do and if left unchallenged tend to grow in magnitude and frequency.

So the theory’s easy, be really straight and direct with people – but clearly the practice is a lot more difficult. What can you do to be more appropriately corrective? I’ve a suggestion for you.

Many people set new year resolutions for themselves and I suggest this habit is transferable to a business too. Prior to Christmas, get the team together for a couple of hours and suggest that together you identify changes to behaviour for 2019 – without stating what they should be, leave that to the team. Nine times out of ten, someone in the group will cite the behaviours you seek to change – the big advantage being that it’s not you that’s surfaced it. But in case they don’t, after everyone has stated the changes in behaviour they would like to see, then it’s totally appropriate for you to add yours.

Having labelled it, you can then ask “what shall we do when someone doesn’t behave as agreed?” and again, let the team debate and propose a decision. I’ve never known their suggestion to be watered down from that the leader would propose, indeed sometimes their ideas for retribution need to be toned down!

Having agreed the new behaviours the key then is to catch people doing things right. A great habit is to start every morning with a quick recap of your observations from the previous day of specific examples of the new behaviours. This makes it so much easier if/when you need to call someone’s attention to an incident where they have slipped up.

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