red10 ‘s Gavin Simpson shares a recent case study here for a Team Tool that clients request to use almost every time we work with an in-flight team: Feedback-on-a-Page™.

The situation

A leader approached me about working with his leadership team. The department and his team were struggling. He had been recently employed to bring new ways of working and changes.

Frustrated with lack of pace and changes not being adopted, it was no surprise that the recent engagement survey results were poor. The situation was stuck, and he recognised the place to start was with his own leadership team.

He and the team needed to know what was really going on. Reality is one of red10 ‘s 9 Dimensions – “the foundations upon which everything else is built – open conversations and no denial”. When a team is in-flight and wants to get to that next level of performance then we always start with Reality. One of the tools we use to support the Reality dimension is Feedback-on-a-Page™. It helps teams to quickly have the important conversations; build shared understanding and commit to actionable proposals for change.

Click an image to view a PDF example in a new window:

What we did next

We did 30-minute phone calls with all the leadership team members asking them the classic learning review questions:

1. What is working well, that you want to encourage, nurture and protect?
2. What are your requests for what could be done differently?

Knowing that ‘less is more’, we condensed all of the feedback onto just a single page. Using their actual words, we created and numbered the number of people who made a comment on that theme, weaving their actual words together. In this way people didn’t know who said what, but they could see what they had said amongst other similar comments. And now the data gave them the full picture.

I presented the feedback to the leader first before sending it onwards to the team. He was delighted and also surprised by some of the feedback. After some reflection and discussion, he sent it to the team to review before we got together at the team workshop.

Their Feedback…

A lot was going well for example:

  1. The team were aligned on the ‘new structure and processes’ being the right thing to do
  2. There was recognition of the technical experience and capability in the team
  3. The team leader was commended for being so accessible

There were also examples of what could be done differently:

  1. Leaders felt they had to slow down and allow people to get used to the new processes before layering in more change
  2. Some of the leaders were struggling to find time to help people through the change and felt unsupported and on their own. They didn’t have time to prepare for further changes the leader wanted to make next.

Where this led…

This led to very open, honest and constructive conversations in the meeting and a number of proposals for actionable change in how the change was being managed including:

  • An action to review workload
  • Re-prioritizing some future changes
  • Having group level meetings with more than one leader to discuss the process changes
  • Identifying more learning and development support for people across the function including some training for the whole leadership team on change conversations.

We then changed gear and looked at their Vision for their leadership team, another one of the red10 9 Dimensions, this gave a future focus. This was highly energising and consolidated their alignment, resolve and commitment to their new levels of openness.

Could this be of use to you?

If you would like to learn more about any of red10 ‘s Team Tools or talk about our team coaching approach, then please contact us to find out more about how we work with teams to help them develop their effectiveness.