On today’s show we discuss what to do when you’re not getting the results you need.
Two decades ago, Jason Scott founded 120VC to help people, leaders, and teams get things done that really matter. He’s uncovered some universal truths along the way: organizations are optimized for the results they’re getting, and to get different results, humans need to perform their jobs differently.
His passion to mentor and training a new generation of leaders led him to start the Transformation Leadership Academy where he leads a 14-week certification program. And in 2020, Jason launched the 120 Brand Community, featuring Brick and Matter CO, BAMCO, a brand accelerator transforming how brands can go to market, and Next Jump Outfitters an overland guide and e-commerce business transforming how people balance work and play as digital nomads.
Jason has spent over 20 years leading global transformational efforts for DirecTV, Trader Joe’s, Blizzard Entertainment, RIOT Games, Sony Pictures, ResMed, AAG, Universal Music Group, Remitly, and others. He is the author of two Amazon-bestselling books “It’s Never Just Business, It’s About People” and “The Irreverent Guide to Project Management, An Agile Approach to Enterprise Project Management” and is a sought-after keynote speaker.
When a high functioning team is not performing well, how do you go about diagnosing the problem?
- Figure out who is struggling on the team. The problem is almost always a person.
- Find out what that person is missing to be successful at their job and help them find it.
- If that doesn’t work and they are unable or unwilling to work together on what is missing, the leader can help them move into another role where they can be successful.
When an individual in a team is not performing well, what advice do you have for them?
- There’s a paradigm around accountability that comes from a breakdown, something didn’t go right, and we are going to hold a person “accountable”. This is backwards. A good leader is going to find the right person for the job, that person is going to find the best way to do their job, and the leader is going to help them find their own roadmap to accomplishment. Leaders set people up to be accountable.
- When an individual feels like they are not succeeding, they are miserable. So a good leader is going to work to help find out what’s missing for the individual, and if that doesn’t work, keep supporting them until they transition out.
- It is ultimately the leader’s responsibility to make sure the people they invite on to the team, succeed on the team.
What are your thoughts on failing projects:
- Projects fail due to poor leadership, period.
- If you’re not getting the results you need from a team, you need to try something different with the team and then measure if that improves or diminishes the desired result.
- If you have a project that solves a problem that the people on the project think is real and exists, they will voluntarily participate you won’t have to force them.
Best practices to reach best project outcomes (KPIs):
- Make sure you can articulate why the change needs to be done.
- Humans fundamentally want to succeed. If you ask humans to their jobs differently, they must understand and feel the problem we are solving is important enough to put themself at risk and be vulnerable.
- When you have a change project you want to deploy, start by asking:
1) Who are we going to ask to do their jobs differently?
2) Who is going to be doing the work?
3) Ask the stakeholders who are responsible for these humans going to manage the change?
4) How is the problem I am solving related to the two groups that are going to change the way they work.
Leadership is about commitment not compliance or agreement.
- As a leader, don’t ask for people to agree – which is from their head, ask them to commit, which is from their heart.
- Lead by giving people the ability to choose their own path.
- Compliance is an illusion. You can have authority over people, and they’ll still avoid things they don’t want to do. If you give people choice, and you call on them to use that choice. Allow people to choose to follow you. When someone tells you something is mandatory…there is a visceral feeling of resistance for humans.
What do you do about performance reviews when people are not on board?
- First question from your team members will be why? So whenever you launch any project you need to rationalize your why.
- To get to your why ask first, what problem are you solving? Does it improve customer satisfaction? Does it improve team satisfaction? Does it improve profitability?
- Then ask: Is there demand for this? Don’t launch a project before you know you have demand. Test a project demand before you launch it.
- Create a brief presentation with the questions: How does this drive company vision? Why do we need to make this change now? What will happen if we don’t make this change? How are major stakeholders impacted? How does it benefit them?
- Ask for people to give you experience shares, not advice or opinions. Team members experience questions: Tell me about a job you didn’t do performance reviews. How are performance reviews at this company for you?
- You don’t have to be talented to be successful. You just have to do the work.
- The meaning of life is people. If you care for people on your team and support them to be as successful as possible, they will succeed for themselves and for you. Control is not necessary.
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