In today’s blog post, we explore options that will enable your team to move towards the goal that was set before them. This is a pivotal step in the coaching process. If done correctly, you will engage your team and create a desire for them to improve. If done incorrectly, your team will disengage and they probably will fail again. It is the coach or team leaders’ job to create this participative environment. Let us look and see how.
Identifying Paths to Reaching Team Goals
Many times, we feel that we have to outline the specific actions that the team has to take in order to reach the stated goal. While this may make you feel better, the likely hood of this action becoming meaningful to your team is close to nil. There is usually very little wiggle room when it comes to a performance goal. It is the plain, unchangeable business reality. Next, we established the current state of affairs with respect to your team’s performance. This historical and factual reality is also unchangeable.
Now, let us take it from the team’s perspective. How in control do they feel? Would they shut down if we, as their coach or team leader, solely determine the action steps they are going to take? They might. It is imperative to keep the team engaged. If not, the rest of the coaching session is just a one-way discussion, leaving your team feeling powerless in their own development.
When you allow your team to participate in the development of their options, you get B.I.G. results. B.I.G. results stand for the following benefits:
- Buy-in by your team, because the options developed was a collaborative effort
- Innovation, because more creativity is possible when more people work at it
- Growth, because the options developed will have more meaning and lasting commitment
Choosing Your Final Approach to Reaching Team Goals
Deciding on which option to implement could be frustrating. The best thing to do is to implement a consistent method of determining the best possible option. The APAC section of the B.I.G. Template is designed to help you come to a quick decision on which option to implement. Here is how it works.
After you have brainstormed your options with your team, assess the pros of each option. Determine the benefits and possible rewards to select that option. Write those benefits in the template. Next, assess the cons for each option. Here are some things to consider:
- Resources needed
- Return on investment
- Disruption of the business
All of these factors could rule out an option. Once you identify the cons place those in the corresponding area on the template. Next, determine the top five options that are feasible to implement. Use a rating scale from 1-5 and place that in the rating column. Now, you are ready to rate the relevancy of the options identified as feasible. Rate the relevancy of the options with the goal. Here are some things to consider when rating this category:
- Does this option build new supporting skills?
- Does this option meet the time requirement of the goal?
- Is this option measurable?
Once you determine the relevancy, you are able to multiply the feasibility rating with the relevancy rating. The highest number is possibly your best option. Remember to gain consensus from your team on this option.
Structuring a Plan to Reach Team Goals
Since you have your team’s attention, it is best to begin the planning process. Structuring a plan as soon as possible sends the message to your team that you mean business when it comes to implementing the option. For example: your SMART goal may be to increase the sales attempt rate from five percent to seven in 30 days. Next, you and your team may have agreed to focus on asking open-ended questions during a sales call as their option, giving them more information to help them attempt better. When are they going to start asking those questions? How many are they going to ask? These are action items you want document in a preliminary plan.
The 3T questioning technique helps you document three major milestones. Basically, you ask, “What are you going to do:
- Two weeks from today?
- Thirty days from today?
You may need to guide your team when answering the first question. Remember, the more time you let pass from the time you catch them and the time you implement your first action step, you could be losing precious information discussed in your coaching session. Once you get to this point, you are ready to begin drafting your final plan.