"Turn Off Your Electronic Gadget – effective people take time to THINK. Begin the discipline to put white space in your calender. Engage in the glorious pocket of quietude."
James C. Collins, American author and lecturer. (Objective Thinker?)
Is your bus packed correctly?
On the Bus
Use Disc to: Pack your bus to start with.
Complementing Oxor Imposition™
Right seats on the Bus
Use Disc to: Get the right people in the right seats on your bus.
Complementing Oxor Imposition™
Get off the Bus
Use Disc to: Get the wrong people off your bus.
Complementing Oxor Imposition™
Put who before what
Use Disc to: Always put 'who' before 'what' if you want to get it done.
Complementing Oxor Imposition™
Worse, it can drive away the best people.
Strong performers are intrinsically motivated by performance and, when they see their efforts impeded by carrying extra weight, they eventually become frustrated.”
-- James C. Collins, "Good to Great" --
Most common problems faced by teams can be addressed using the strengths within each behaviour pattern. Sometimes this involves switching leadership styles and other times it means someone needs to flex their style to give the team what it needs. The team leader has to know when to ask for help and be willing to give up control to utilise different people’s strengths.
1. Difficulty making decisions
Teams often struggle with differing opinions when working to reach consensus. Often, this takes the form of analysis-paralysis or fear of failure. When this happens, you should strongly consider putting a “D” or “CSI” (also known as a “false D”) style in charge. You will want them to flex their “I” style so they can get everyone’s input and use their influencing skills to gain support for the final decision. If the “D” simply makes the decision themselves, they risk losing buy-in and commitment to action from the team members. If that happens, they should focus on delegating pieces of the project to others. This will strengthen future decision-making by the team. Never expect a Practitioner or Perfectionist to make difficult decisions or expect "I" or "S" to lead. The OT and Enhancer can be surprisingly good but are even better with the backup of clout provided by a "D".
2. Missing project deadlines
While the “D” style can take charge and make decisions, they may not always do well with details and follow-through. This is where the “C” style strengths will help meet project deadlines. This style does not necessarily like to be in charge, but they can either be coached to flex their “D” style or the “D” in charge makes it clear to the team that the “C” style has full authority when it comes to project deadlines. They will have to monitor the level of detail and need for accuracy that the “C” requires, as this can lead right back to “analysis-paralysis.” The “S” style is also well-suited to make steady progress needed to meet deadlines. When they partner with the “C” style, they will create a strong duo for delivering results on-time. Never put an "I" as a Project Manager as they are terrible finishers.
3. Poor communication
Quite often, one of the underlying issues with sub-par team performance is a lack of effective communication. Both “I” and “S” styles have strengths that can facilitate better communication. The “S” style is exceptional at relating well to team members through their listening and supportive approach. They also present information in a way that is easy to understand. When team members feel listened to and validated, they will continue to keep communication open with the “S” style. The “I” style’s positive outlook inspires team members to stay focussed on the goals. They like to be the centre of attention, though and, if not kept in-check, they may lose the respect of the team. The performer in them does engagingly present information so they may be an excellent spokesperson to others outside the group. Be careful with the "C" on communication.
4. Unclear goals
Successful project achievement comes down to clearly defined goals. The “C” style is strongest at providing details, but has to take care not to go too far. If they can balance the details, the goals will have just enough definition to be properly understood. Similarly, the “D” style can take the lead on prioritising goals, which is crucial to successful projects. In the execution of the goals, be aware that the “S” type will benefit from focussing on one or two goals at most, as they are not naturally gifted at multitasking. The “I” style can be in charge of celebrating goal achievement, an important (and often overlooked) piece of motivating the team. But the "I" is a woeful finisher when compared with being a motivator.
5. Lack of creativityComing up with something new and fresh is one of the keys to problem-solving. Sometimes, when creativity is lacking, putting an “I” style in charge of reinvigorating the team can help them get their creative edge back. Their natural enthusiasm engages team members. Have them plan an outing for the team provides a change of scenery. This will add to the team’s creative ability and generate new thinking patterns. But be careful that the creativity does not become the project. The OT and Enhancer can plan using creative methods.
6. ToxicityEach of the four quadrants can have terrible and toxic leaders. Watch out for that.
A toxic "D" - "Do what I say. If I need your opinion, I'll let you know what it needs to be."
A toxic "I" - "Of course the mistake is your responsibility. I am here to shine only when things go well."
A toxic "S" - "My heart is breaking every time I have to explain to you what you are doing wrong."
A toxic "C" - "I already know everything better and I can do it better than anyone else."
Characteristics of Toxicity - See these and get rid of that person to the maximum extent that you can.
⊆ Person 1. Those who belittle you and your achievements; gossip and never
want to lose face. e.g. Appraiser.
⊆ Person 2. Those who lie and fake their feelings. Overly critical and controlling. Over-involve themselves in the affairs of others. Overbearing, needy and insistent on their way. e.g. Persuader.
⊆ Person 3. Manipulative personalities. Distractable, self-centered, forceful with their opinions and pushy in their way of thinking. e.g. Promoter.
⊆ Person 4. Those who thrive on negativity and drama. Loudly make mischief or embarrass themselves. e.g. Counselor.
⊆ Person 5. Egocentric characters and those who take advantage of you. Brash, condescending and overly focussed on novelty. e.g. Inspirational.
⊆ Person 6. With rule book of how life is to be led. e.g. Objective Thinker.
⊆ Person 7. Over-sensitive, self-pitying and self-righteous. e.g. Agent.
⊆ Person 8. Lecture people about how things “should” be done. Argumentative and critical. e.g. Director.
⊆ Person 9. Fail to see the inter-personal context of situations and look down on people. e.g. Achiever.
⊆ Person 10. Judgmental and self-righteous. e.g. Specialist.
⊆ Person 11 Centre of attention, talk over others, interrupt, loud and overbearing. e.g. Results.
⊆ Person 12. Know what other people are going to say before they say it; finish people’s sentences, interrupt and interject criticisms. e.g Enhancer.
⊆ Person 13. Resentment, self-pity or a feeling of being overwhelmed. e.g. Investigator.
⊆ Person 14. Overly critical, forgetful or oblivious to emotion. e.g. Perfectionist.
⊆ Person 15. self-righteous martyr e.g. Practitioner ⊆ Person 16. Extremely argumentative and critical. See ways that everything could be better, but this turns into fault-finding behaviour. e.g. Developer.
Are we on the money?
Whether you decide to cut people out of your life or not, it is always up to you. After all, whether you can
tolerate a particular behaviour or not depends on your values and Disc pattern.
But it all gets down to one universal truth: if you feel drained, worthless or unhappy every time you spend time with that particular person, then they probably should have no place in your life. Sometimes, friendships and family ties come secondary and you have to put your emotional health first.
Did you learn this here? We appreciate your acclamation.
7. StyleEach of the four quadrants can coach in different ways. Watch out for that.
A coaching "D" - "I'll push for quick results."
A coaching "I" - "I'll act like a visionary explorer."
A coaching "S" - "I'll walk every step of the way with the client."
A coaching "C" - "I'll provide a detailed 'how to' plan."
8. Employee Induction - aka 'Onboarding', a new and extremely unfortunate term. It is likely this expression of vulgarity was created by an HR Manager - most likely a Persuader or a Counselor.Each of the four quadrants should be inducted in different ways.
A new "D" - Keep it 'bottom-line' focussed and provide opportunities for the new employee to feel in control of their own induction process.
A new "I" - They will want to feel welcome and accepted. They crave connection and approval, so provide sufficient time to allow them to express their ideas and engage with others.
A new "S" - They hate change and a new job is automatically stressful. Give them structure and a plan for their induction on the first day(s).
A new "C" - They respond to lots and lots of information and logic. Know that they will ask a lot of questions and you should have additional mountains of facts and resources for them to explore on their own.
Knowing when to shift roles or flex styles will help you build a high performing team. Beyond doing this yourself, you can hire a coach to help facilitate these challenges, or you can use Titanium Imposition™ to improve your effectiveness as a manager.Features of weak leaders and how to spot them with the Oxor Method™
Most employees have had experience with simply outstanding leaders and others who are oxygen thieves. The following will guide you in determining what sort of cat you have to deal with. Oxor imposition can work upwards - how to treat the boss.
A weak leader will exhibit one or more of five traits.
▶ Weak leader Trait 1: Hesitating to Take Definitive Action.
Constantly preparing. Never quite ready. Staff need a little more training. Procrastination, refusing to take on the competition even when at an advantage. Like to launch a new product, find another job, write a book, have a difficult conversation, a project to approve, a person to fire, a call to make. Need: TO START. Perfectionism is the mother of procrastination as one is never going to find the perfect time or the perfect circumstances or be totally prepared. At some point you have to start.
The Inspirational (4) can get so excited about new possibilities that they leave other projects unfinished.
They can struggle with procrastination or finding ways to prioritize their many visions and plans.
The Persuader (5) hates conflict and tries to be encouraging and withhold criticism as much as possible. This can cause negative situations to escalate as they put off dealing with them for too long.
The Promoter (7) may struggle with prioritizing their many ideas. Some try to give each of their ideas and ambitions equal priority and wind up overworking themselves or their team and not finishing projects.
The Counselor (8) is a free-spirit who does not like to be tied down or overwhelmed with long to-do lists.
The Specialist (9) tends to be flexible and hands-on in their work and can feel frustrated if they are stuck in an office all day with rigid rules and deadlines.
The Agent (11) is very accepting who likes to create an encouraging atmosphere for their team. They may struggle with dishing out criticism or dealing with conflict.
The Achiever (12) is good at solving problems in the present moment, but they can struggle with seeing a long-term vision or plan for the future. They may also be so impersonal that they can ignore the emotional needs of others.
The Perfectionist (15) is extremely autonomous and will tire of leadership positions that put them in crowded rooms and at the mercy of other people’s schedules and whims. The Enhancer (16) can get so caught up in their vision that they lose sight of details that may be important. They can also struggle with maintaining morale because they tend to disregard “social niceties” or tact in favor of being objective and decisive.
The Promoter (7); Inspirational (4); Perfectionist (15); Agent (11); Specialist (9) are the worst offenders with this trait, in this order.
▶ Weak leader Trait 2: Complaining About Insufficient Resources.
Insufficient staff, budget, equipment. Leaders who do this never get very far. A leader's job is to figure out how to get the resources or make do without them. There are always insufficient resources. One could always use more of one thing or another. But successful leaders figure out how to get the job done with whatever resources they have by using their imagination. Ultimately, there is no such thing as insufficient resources; there are only unresourceful people.
The Results (3) is quick to see opportunities, but often find the technicalities of reaching a long-range vision frustrating.
The OT (14) may get so caught up in the details of a problem that they lose sight of the big picture. They can also have difficulty taking into account the emotions and needs of everyone they lead.
The Perfectionist (15) is guilty here - observe one on an IT project.
▶ Weak leader Trait 3: Refusing to Take Responsibility.
Blame everyone else for own mistakes (the 'victim') and own refusal to act. Tend to want consensus on everything. Great leaders do not do this. They are accountable for the results and accept full responsibility for the outcomes.
The Appraiser (6) is a expert diplomat but can struggle with strategy and long-range planning.
The Practitioner (13) is maybe the worst leader of all. They are good at staying on track with goals, but they may struggle with knowing which goals to prioritize. They may struggle with seeing the 'the big picture' or strategizing effectively. They may also try to avoid confrontation to such a degree that they struggle with making decisions.
They do not what is needed, but whatever presents the fewest difficulties.
▶ Weak leader Trait 4: Abusing the Privileges of Leadership.
While staff are in unbearable conditions, this leader lives in near-royal splendour. They spend almost every evening entertaining guests with elaborate dinners and parties. Insists on the best clothes and accommodation. Hopefully, the lifestyle is underwritten by taxpayers. Leadership is first and foremost a stewardship not held for own self; it is held on behalf of someone else; it is to serve. And you are accountable. If you abuse it, you will eventually lose it.
The Director (1) has to be careful not to “steamroll” over other people’s working styles, emotions and
differences. They may become so focused on impersonal pros and cons that they ignore how decisions might
affect people in a personal way. They can also struggle with micro-managing the people they lead.
The Developer (2) is primarily concerned with making things happen (using a bully boy approach) and may not fully appreciate that other people may take a little longer to understand or may not be as forthcoming or direct and assume that silence means agreement. They do not generally understand emotions, preferring to deal with issues as problems or concepts. Trying to appeal to the Developer's emotional side may not be the best way to resolve issues.
▶ Weak leader Trait 5: Engaging in Acts of Insubordination.
Openly and continually criticizes the boss by being passive-aggressive. Even when given a direct order, they can find a way to avoid obeying it. With arrogance, always know a better way than the boss and has a ready made excuse to rationalise their lack of follow-through. Particularly if they do not like the decision or it requires resolution of conflict. Criticising your boss in public is never a good idea. You may get fired. If you disagree with the boss’s direction and feel deeply about it, then confront it in private or resign. This really comes down a matter of integrity. Even if your boss is incompetent, you have a duty of respect. If that is not the case, resign. Speaking out publicly while you are still employed is just not an option. And not very smart.
The Investigator (10) can be a workaholic leader and can burn themselves out as they push themselves to an unattainable “perfect” standard. They also may struggle with presenting their vision in a clear way, with sequential steps and a straightforward course. They often feel flustered when trying to put a vision out into the world. This can be frustrating for them and the people they work with. They also struggle with giving negative feedback or dealing with conflict situations and may ignore negative situations or handing out criticism when it is required. The Perfectionist (15) and Practitioner (13) can also foul of this trait.