In an increasingly collaborative working world, healthy professional relationships are often the key to getting things done efficiently and effectively. Yet when it comes to development, many organizations focus almost entirely on individual development – of leaders, of high potentials, even of at-risk employees – and leave team development on the back burner until a crisis rears its head. While advocating for team development investment can be a challenge when there’s an absence of urgency, I would argue that foregoing team development is leaving money on the table – both by allowing inefficiencies to fester, and by generating costly turnover from employees who are less than satisfied.
When we started exploring how to create a tool that would help teams, we wanted to make sure we built something that wouldn’t just work in crisis or conflict. We wanted to build something that would help any team operate more effectively by revealing sources of friction, imbalance, or bias that linger below the surface.
The IDI Team Development Report was designed to do just that – help any team work more effectively by operating from a deeper level of self-awareness and team awareness. And it’s been exciting to start hearing stories of this tool is working in the field, helping a wide range of teams improve the way they function.
In a new Case Study, longtime MRG partner Uli Otto of lrb Solutions shares the story of coaching a team that was struggling to build strong connections. The organization’s leaders were genuinely caring people who were struggling to signal their caring in a way that the rest of their team could experience it. The organization had been reeling from some recent change and upheaval, and there was something about the way these leaders were communicating that was leaving their employees a little lost.
Uli employed the new IDI Team Development Report to build an engagement that would help six key employees develop a deeper understanding of each other on a motivational level. She used the report in combination with other tools and a few of her own signature exercises (the “Troll in the Woods” exercise is a personal favorite of mine!) to guide the team in a direction that would help them reach their goals of forming stronger team connections and working together more effectively.
In a forthcoming case study, we’ll explore developing a team that’s experiencing much more obvious friction. But for many organizations, the need for team development isn’t a distress signal – it comes from an organizational need for everyone to operate more effectively.