Posted: September 11, 2017 by Jaime Stenning
Teams fall apart all the time; sometimes slowly, sometimes very quickly. However, they fall apart, and there seem to be some common symptoms (or maybe they are causes?).
Top of the hit parade, a big indicator of the future, is the level of or rather the lack of accountability and ownership. For whatever reason, your people just don’t seem to ‘get’ what needs to be done and how and why. Ever the optimist, I do not believe that this is a failing on the part of your people. After all you recruited them and then you trained them, but your efforts to retain their commitment and enthusiasm seem to have failed. So, who’s fault is it? The answer is, yours.
The lack of accountability and ownership is what you see because of an unengaged workforce. Again, this is the result of something that you have done. Your people do not deliberately disengage as soon as they walk through the factory gates. You are doing something to cause this.
The final straw in this mess is often a poor work-life balance. This is particularly true in middle and senior managers. They simply lose the plot.
Often, they don’t feel they own their piece of their action. Often, they feel that they and their reports are not or should not be accountable for their actions. They and the rest of the workforce are simply dis- or un-engaged. The result is under-performance at work but often at home as well. Everything goes out of kilter. This isn’t what the business wants for its people whether HR is purely mercenary or totally parochial. What HR wants is engaged, committed, enthusiastic people to deliver great value for and on behalf of the business.
It is the job of the people in HR and Learning & Development to create a climate and environment that combats poor accountability and ownership, an unengaged workforce and poor work-life balance. That is the challenge. Most HR and L&D people are bombarded with universal solutions, one-size-fits-all options, to apply to their teams. I am not sure if they really work like that.