In some of my previous posts, I’ve addressed a number of different workplace environments – many of which are not what you’d consider a dream workplace. But with those other workplaces so prevalent, does the dream workplace really exist or is it merely a magical unicorn we just hypothesize about? I’m here to tell you it really exists and usually it’s because the people on the team are very intentional in how they work together. They consistently use frameworks that guide how they work together.
Over the next couple of posts, I’ll share some of these frameworks so you can build a workplace that you’ll love!
Here’s a simple place to start. Team Circles. Imagine this scenario:
First thing every Monday morning, we have a meeting known as Team Circle. It’s not only called a circle because we sit in a circle but also because there is no hierarchy in these meetings. We’re all equal regardless of our position and tenure. How many business teams can say that about their meetings?
Our Team Circle is guided by Ann, our team captain. Ann was appointed to serve in this role for one year because she is really good at getting teams excited about their work. Job rotations are frequent here because changing roles is a great way to learn new things while walking a mile in someone else’s shoes. The team captain position is no exception; it rotates every 12 to 18 months. Team captains are chosen based on their personal career goals, positive feedback from coworkers, and how well they inspire the company’s values in others.
Ann launches each Team Circle by reminding us of our three most important goals for the quarter. Right now, our “big three” are to (1) sell $2 million in product, (2) achieve 98 percent on-time delivery, and (3) implement the next modules of our new automated accounting system. It might seem odd to begin a finance team meeting with goals having to do with sales and on-time delivery, but here, the same “big three” goals apply to every person in every department. Each of us is clear on what the goals are and how we contribute to them.
After we’re reminded of the “big three,” my peers and I each have three minutes to update the group on the previous week’s accomplishments and this week’s plan. Everyone is prepared because the agenda seldom varies. This sort of consistency keeps everyone on the same page. We also take time to recognize an individual on our team that has brought us one step closer to a “big three” goal or because they’ve done something that demonstrated one or more of our values. It’s a great way to help us recognize and acknowledge the hard work that is being done throughout our team.
Sound effective? It is. Shake up your team meetings and create your own Team Circle. Let us know how it goes.
After all, what have you got to lose?
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