This Leader Has a Plan for Inspiring Team Growth. Do You?

Do you maximize the talents of your team members? Have you learned to minimize unproductive conflict, and focus the energy and drive of your team? Do you have a comprehensive approach for inspiring star performance?

Mary Terp, Director of Human Resources for the United Way of the Greater Lehigh Valley, has experienced many different "pieces" of professional development. "In the past, some people did Myers-Briggs, and some staff members completed other assessments. It was piecemeal. Individuals would go to a workshop, come back to the office and then put their learning on a shelf."

A patchwork approach to team development rarely results in the kind of high power collaboration that leads to an increased bottom line.

A Complete Solution for Professional Development

After participating in the Talent@Work® seminar, Mary experienced a more comprehensive approach.

First, Mary learned about herself. What passions drive her? How does she deal with problems and challenges? How does she relate to people, tasks and procedures?

Next Mary explored how other people differ in their passions and approaches. With these insights, she immediately saw how to minimize conflict and improve communication.

Self-awareness. Other-awareness. Those are two key components of emotional intelligence and together they form the cornerstone of all high performing teams: trust.

"As an HR professional, I love the line on your website that explains the value of Talent@Work®: 'You can put together the most talented group of people you want, but if they're not trusting and engaging, they won't be high performing.'"

The Importance of Hiring for Fit

Seeing how these pieces come together created one "aha" moment for Mary. Learning that communication style, motivators, and emotional intelligence can be used to hire more effectively inspired another.

"So often in recruiting, you focus on hiring the best candidate--the most qualified, the most experienced. What became clear to me is that we also need to make sure we have a great fit with our team. And we have to make sure those highly talented people are collaborating together."

4 Steps for Improving Collaboration

So how exactly do you get people to work better together? Do what the United Way of the Greater Lehigh Valley is doing:

Step 1: To get the entire organization focused on emotional intelligence, Mary invited Shawn Kent Hayashi to conduct a workshop on the topic. "The EQ workshop and the book offered us a structure for getting our staff up to speed on emotional intelligence--what it is and why it matters."

Step 2: "Next we're rolling out the Talent@Work assessments to all staff this year. In the seminar, I learned how to run our own assessment center, so we'll be able give and debrief assessments in-house."

"The assessments will give all of us a common language for working together and will improve everyone's self-awareness. This will impact how we interact with each other and with the people we serve in the community. We're looking forward to incorporating awareness into our everyday language and our everyday work."

Step 3: "We're also going to job benchmark our positions as you taught us to do in the seminar. Job benchmarking will give everyone clarity about who does what in our organization, and it will help everyone understand exactly how to succeed in their role." 

Step 4: "Finally, we're incorporating all these components into our talent management processes including our one-to-one meetings, annual performance planning and review, and development and succession planning.  Doing so will keep this methodology alive in our culture and avoid having it collect dust on a shelf."

The United Way of the Greater Lehigh Valley is finished with piecemeal professional development. "We're really excited about having a comprehensive approach to managing in-house talent and becoming a high performing team."

"We're also grateful to The Professional Development Group for generously providing this expertise as an in-kind service.  High-performing staff enhances the organization's ability to provide leadership, convene partnerships and develop the resources and solutions to improve our community.  By helping us improve the effectiveness of our team, The Professional Development Group is enabling us to have a greater impact on the community."

The Professional Development Group LLC is proud to partner with an organization as committed to improving its own people as it is to improving our community.

If you'd like to implement a comprehensive plan for hiring, aligning, and inspiring your team for superior performance, reserve a seat in our next Talent@Work® session or contact us about one-on-one Talent@Work® coaching.