When it comes to change or learning, how do you prefer to learn?
Do you do your best when you are brought in, instructed on the rules(policies or procedures, S.O.P)
Does that make you feel engaged? Do you want to be part of the process?
Is it any different for your team?
“Do it with the people, not to the people.”
Many organizations have shared their struggles with me, often turning to experts for answers. However in many cases, the answers organizations are looking for are in the room with their people.
So how do we get the answers?
First, we have to create a culture of engagement; the best way to do this is by sharing the why. More on that here.
Next, we foster engagement in the training meetings. We do this my asking questions.
“Anything we can say as a statement we can phrase as a question.”
If we ask questions in a non-leading way, framing with reality as we go, we allow for individuals to reach the correct conclusion on their own.
“in life, if you want better answers - ask better questions.”
For example, if we are looking to work on creating better customers experience one way would be to create a policy, pull the team in and tell them the new policy and the consequences for noncompliance.
The better alternative would be to gather the group, discuss their positive customer experiences, their negative experience all the while asking meaningful follow-up questions.
They may share about a doctors office, retail experience or the time they needed help from the phone company.
We can ask what organizations that do a great job have in common, what they do what they don’t do.
Unfortunately, it's sometimes easier to find organizations that provide poor examples and talk about those to get started.
We should ask what they remember about the experience? What was the impact? Who all was affected by the whole thing? Most importantly we can ask how they felt.
It's not uncommon in the retelling for people to get worked up and feel what the felt during the experience.
Very quickly they will draw the connection between how we take care of our customers and the way our customer may feel?
From there it is an easy step to put together a list of best practices that everybody can get behind. Moving forward these become the “just way things get done here”. New employees catch the message; standards have improved in a way that allows everyone to own it.”
This method is the most sustainable way to create change.
Now from an ongoing management perspective, we can come alongside our team and ask what has changed since “we all agreed on best practices.” It puts you in a position to learn more and be less confrontational in management style. Less "them and us".
More to come in that next post.
these are just the thoughts of someone who used to know more but now knows less...
I would love to hear from you on your thoughts and feedback...