1. Conduct an annual business review
In your team, you and your colleagues would all agree that there are gaps between what they are actually doing and what they feel that the team should be doing in the areas of:
2. Develop a business improvement plan
Meet with your team to develop solutions. Reducing the gaps – conflict – will be dependent on improving your team’s:
3. Assign improvement solutions to each team member
Assign ‘new’ roles and responsibilities to each team member. If necessary, adjust team members’ position description and document any changes in their performance review template.
4. Conduct monthly review and improvement meetings.
Provide monthly feedback to the team on the its progress in achieving KPI’s, to celebrate success to challenge and to reinforce. Ensure that each team member reports on their areas of responsibility. Include in each team members report “What I’m struggling with is…” this ensures that conflict is tabled and dealt with each month, and “Who I’d like to thank for making my job easier is…” This helps develop cooperative and supportive relationships and those who aren’t being ‘thanked’ will start to feel some healthy peer group pressure.
5. Conduct staff performance reviews
You want to ensure that each staff member has aligned their behaviours to their new structures, resources, competencies and commitments as outlined in the team’s business improvement plan.
6. Regular maintenance chats
Conduct regular maintenance chats with team members to see how they’re going and to find out if they need any extra support. Encourage them to bring up any concerns, frustrations, ideas and successes at your team’s monthly meetings.
Conducting regular maintenance chats with staff provides an opportunity for you to deal with the conflict issues before they take hold.
I remember a particular maintenance chat I had with a client’s staff member; it went something like this;
Me: “Sam, how much of an effort are you putting in here, give me a percentage out of 100.”
Sam: “Ah…I don’t know.”
Me: “Sam, have a guess.” No one guesses wrong.
Sam: “Oh, I’d say around 70%” Good guess.
Me: ‘Sam is the boss paying you 100% of your wage or only 70% of it?”
Sam: ‘That’s’ not fair.”
Me: “Glad you agree, Sam. Where do you want to make the adjustment?”
7. Up skill your team in conflict resolution
Often, we don’t deal with conflict because we don’t have the words or process to ensure that we don’t make the situation worse. Improving your team’s competencies in conflict resolution would be more valuable to your business than sending them to a sales and margin improvement training course. (Unless it’s one of our courses).
So, to summarise
Small problem. Small fix. Small cost. Big problem. Big fix. Big cost.
Bad pushes out good. Those in your team who put in more do so because they care more. The last thing you want is to have those who care more think “Why should I bother, if they don’t care why should I?”
If you’d like to know what your gaps are free of cost and obligation, go to our services page to complete our Business Audit. And remember; eyebrows up when dealing with conflict!