By Lucy Freedman
There's a kind of either-or thinking that says, if you implement
a quick fix, you are sacrificing the long-term solutions that
are really necessary. This may be true in some cases. Still, do
not be so quick to conclude that we can do nothing of immediate
value because of the short-term vs. long-term dilemma.
Quick fixes, especially when aligned with big-picture
thinking from time to time, can contribute to the overall solution.
Another way to look at quick fixes is as the small steps of incremental
change. If we are fortunate enough for small steps to add up to
big, beneficial changes; so much the better.
At Syntax, we believe that if there is a will
to do something that improves people's skills at working together,
take advantage of both small and large opportunities. Building
effective organizational culture is not a one-shot deal. Long
term initiatives eventually must translate into day-to-day behavior
in the present. So there are many moments for learning, moments
for making a better connection between team members, moments for
clarifying the purpose of something you are working on.
Here are some examples of how quick fixes and
long term solutions can play out:
Team formation - no time to waste, arrange for a syntax facilitator
to sit in and assist with goal setting. Leave-behind: experience
with quick and clear goal-setting, mutual understanding of goals.
Long term improvement in performance and ability to course-correct
from the original plan.
Motivated learner - one team member wants to learn
Syntax for career development. This takes time out in the short
term, gives short term benefits to the team, and provides long
term value to the employee.
Mini-workshops - take a couple of hours and learn and practice
a specific communication skill. Air current concerns, boost morale,
and demonstrate the importance of communication and learning in
the organization's culture. Specific skill ties in with
Long Term Solutions with Continuing Payoffs
For long term investments that reduce the per-incident cost of
Have intact teams or a subgroup of interested
employees attend Syntax together.
Arrange for a series of follow-up telecoaching
calls, and offer one-on-one coaching to those who request it.
Commit to a time frame of 6 months to 1
year (varies depending on organization size and complexity) during
which all five component skill sets of Syntax add up to a consciously
competent organization, which can meet customer and stakeholder
needs with significantly more reliability.
Reinforce with mini-workshops or Syntax
team facilitation from time to time to include new people and
refresh best practices.
Learn from on-the-job experience and generate
new ways to expand and apply the versatile skill sets. Set breakthrough
goals and consciously use effective organizational behavior patterns
to go for them.
Measure the results by putting simple reporting
processes into place. Celebrate how much human talent is being
brought out, increasing productivity while reducing needless stress.
Bottom Line: You DON'T have to choose either-or!
Take advantage of both short and long term benefits - whatever
the time calls for!
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