Top Team Development
Experience of working with senior teams demonstrates clearly that the quality of relationship and dialogue at the top will have a significant impact throughout the business. Not only do employees tend to emulate the behaviour of their most senior leaders, but interdepartmental relations will be directly affected by the quality of relating within the executive team. Hence it is not uncommon for organisations to seek to improve their senior managers through team-building exercises and off-sites.
The difficulty with a senior team, however, is that it isn’t always a team. Many of the decisions taken relate to functional responsibility, where there is some degree of clarity regarding the options and where decisions can be made based on effective evaluation of those options. These are organisational puzzles, or 'technical challenges' which are reasonably tangible and related to the ‘how’ of management (e.g. ‘how do we implement the new CRM system?).
However this is not, in my view, where an Executive Team makes a real difference. The real difference is made in their addressing the long time strategic challenges faced by the business, but often not enough time is dedicated to the kind of quality dialogue needed to address such issues. But these are the decisions that shape the organisation, where data is limited and there is little agreement or certainty on how to progress. These are the problems or 'adaptive challenges' that the senior team is expected to address. Puzzles and problems require different approaches and recognizing when an approach (or mode) is appropriate will create a more effective working group.
For more information about how I might work with you, contact me at: