Are You Meeting the Needs of Your Team?

leadership strengths team building team development Oct 05, 2018

Learning how to effectively manage a team is not always easy…


One Saturday afternoon I was washing dishes in our kitchen. Our lawnmower stopped working a few days prior, and my husband was in the garage diligently tinkering with the machine.


A brief side note…


My husband, in terms of instinctual talents, is referred to as an “insistent implementer.” That means he actually like when something breaks around the house because he naturally engages in hands-on tasks.


Then there is me. If I attempt to fix a leaky faucet – and I wouldn’t do so without coercion – I end up creating an in-house river. In instinctual terms, I am a “counteracting implementer.” My talent lies in visualizing solutions, not in actually building them.


I was scrubbing a pot when my husband treaded up the basement stairs to announce, “Honey! I fixed the lawnmower!” With that mere statement, my needs were met. I got it. The lawnmower now works. Great! For me, the communication process was successful. Another item checked off the to-do list. Time to move on.


My back was turned, but I could sense that he was still standing at the top of the stairs. I turned around to find my husband motioning for me to follow him. I knew what was coming next. Though unnecessary for me, he needed to show his work. Mere verbal communication did not satisfy his innate need to demonstrate the solution. So I pulled off my gloves and followed him into the garage. I tried very hard to seem interested as he pulled off the cap to the mower engine and pointed to his fixes.


Clearly, my husband and I are wired differently. That hard-wiring determines how we communicate. I talk about ideas without ever touching an object or building a model. My husband, on the other hand, must have a visual tool, a concrete demonstration of his thoughts. When we work independently, we draw on our own instincts. But when we work together, we must be tolerant of each other’s methods. Over time, I learned to give him what he needs, and vice versa. As in my story above, I didn’t need to have a visual walk-through of the repair, but my husband did. So participating in his 3-minute demonstration was well worth it.


What are the business implications?


Though marriage is not a business, many of the principles that apply to marriage also apply to your relationship with employees. Do you know how to effectively manage a team? Are you giving others what they need to be successful? Do you recognize that your employees may have a different method for communicating and solving problems? Do you automatically move on when your needs are met, regardless of whether or not your team’s needs are met?


Oftentimes, it takes a small act equivalent to walking down the basement stairs to view a fixed lawnmower to boost team morale and give others what they need to be successful.


We are here to help.


If you’d like to better understand the needs of your team and learn how to effectively manage a team, we’re happy to help. We are experts in identifying natural strengths. Contact us to learn more.

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