During my workshops, participants ask me about the ‘techniques to get the best out of the team members’. Generally I recommend the key principles in the books ‘First break all rules’ by Markus Buckingham and ‘Good to Great’ by Jim Collins and it goes like this;
- Get the right people in and the wrong people out. Then ask them what can be done for the accomplishment of the team goals
- Play on the strengths of your people
- Bring in clarity to the roles and responsibilities
- Put the right person on the right job and give him the freedom to operate
- Do not de-motivate people
- Be a contributing manager, not a controlling manager (pigs and chickens)
These are my versions of the concepts discussed in these books and have worked for me.
After watching the 20-20 Indian premier league cricket matches (right now 12 matches over), by and large the above observations are right. So far Dhoni, the captain of the Chennai team has been the most successful, winning all the four matches they played and the next best is Shane Warne of the RAjasthan team. These two enjoy the game themselves and lead from the front most of the time, when there is a crisis. They both laugh a lot on and off the field, where as some of the biggest failures so far like Rahul Dravid and HArbajan Singh have very serious faces most of the time…they dont radiate a feeling as if they are enjoying the game, instead they reflect tension and pressure.
So the lessons from Dhoni – ” As a manager or captain, you should be enthusiastic and enjoying what you are doing. Should chip in and contribute whenever the team is facing an uphill task. Utilize your resources well based on their strengths. Sometimes the team can fail. As long as the wins are more than the losses, it is okay!. Enjoy it !
Stephen Covey in his ‘7 habits of highly effective people’ and the ‘eighth habit’ stresses on the time gap between the stimulus and response. Between the stimulus and response there is a fraction of a second lag, which helps us to choose our actions which are value based and principle centered. Sri Sri Ravishankar goes one more step ahead and asks ‘Do you have any choices, when you are totally surrendered to the almighty?’ – he states that in the state of complete surrender to almighty lord, we have only one option – to follow him.
Yesterday I wanted to watch the 20-20 cricket match, and suddenly someone else wanted to see some other program on the TV. The options I had was;
1) Use my authority and overrule other’s choices
2) Get angry and do whatever I wanted to do
3) Get out of that room
4) Have the realization that this is one out of 45 matches to be played and is not that important. Have that child like curiosity to see that program which others are preferring over the 20-20 match. There should be something unique there.
I went by the 4th option and did not regret. It was a fantastic dance competition which I enjoyed to the core 🙂
Now I am even more motivated to leverage the time lag between stimulus and response:-)
Recently I picked up ‘God loves fun’ by Sri Sri Ravishankar. In the book there is a portion which talks about ‘in control’ phenomena. In our lives we come across lot of control freaks. In every management training program, they talk about ‘How to be in control’ of everything. Sri Sri Ravishankar attributes this as one reason for lack of happiness. Loosing control is better than trying to control. In the Bible Jesus asks this question ‘Can you make one hair of your’s black or white’ – then what is the point in worrying. Whenever I go to a beach I make it a point to stand still in the water, quiet and looking into the vast expanse of the sea, admiring the greatness of the creator. This helps me to realize the littleness of me in this vast universe. Recently, my friend and business partner Mr.Murali spoke to me about the same experience he had while doing para gliding.
As one gets more matured (mentally and physically), one has to loose control. As a matured manager, I should be able to delegate better. As a Dad, I should be able to loose control of the TV remote to my kids. As get very old, I should loose control of my everything to others. And most important – It is an easy life, if we can loose control of our lives to God, throughout our lives.
It is so easy to get caught up
with the trappings of wealth in this life.
Grant, O Lord, that I may be free
from greed and selfishness.
Remind me that the best things in life are free.
Love, laughter, caring and sharing.