It’s Monday morning, the start of another week, as stare out the window whilst my laptop boots up i begin pondering the week ahead, I’m driven by creating an environment where great people can do amazing things and this is another week to help remove some blockers affecting my team.
Oh for god sake why hasn’t my laptop booted yet, oh wait I first need to enter the password to get past the hard drive security, done.
Now back to pondering….we have a ways of working session this week which should be an amazing opportunity to encourage the ethos of continuous improvement.
I’m distracted by the windows logon screen, password entered successfully again. I’ll go get a cup of tea I think. I meet a very talented colleague at the hot water machine. They are learning to fly light aircraft and working to gain the Private Pilots License. Very cool.
I head back to my desk. Windows has now booted, now to enter my password again to access skype. I’m all set, oh wait, outlook requires my password aswell. Done.
Right now i’m definitely ready to tackle any challenge. Enthused, energised.
Let’s just check my emails….ok, I’ll wait a few minutes while outlook syncs with the exchange server.
While I wait I’ll connect to the wifi, I love TED talks. Hmmm I’m connected to the wifi network but I don’t have an internet connection, odd.
Oh yer! The password I used resets every Monday. Need to register again. Slightly agitated I remove (forget) the wifi network and logon again. Once on the register screen shows, I enter my email address and mobile number.
After a few minutes I receive an SMS detailing my new password to access the internet. After entering my credentials again I am now all set, 7 days of interrupted sorry uninterrupted internet access.
So I head off to Youtube to search for an inspiring TED talk about intrinsic motivation to start my week off, um sorry? You are joking? The internet policy forbids me from accessing this site? I need to raise a ticket with the service desk that my manager will need to approve, it’s low impact and low urgency, it’s only my motivation that’s impacted and that isn’t listed as a system so i’m “other”.
OK, no bother i’ll get on with some “real work”. I was on leave on Friday so probably a good idea to check emails I flagged when I was going through them on my phone during my day off, god bless technology, ensuring I’m “always on”.
My email isn’t syncing? A popup? That’s annoying. My password has expired and needs to be changed? FFS it’s been 28 days since I last changed my password, to think I scoffed at the 6 day reminder last week, how time flies.
So I reset my password and my emails begin to sync, while I wait I find myself pondering again.
Maybe a new challenge would be good? This environment is quite restrictive….so what next? Coaching?, consulting? My own venture?….i’ve been quit interested working with Director level roles and supporting with strategy creation and observing leadership types, maybe that’s an area?
My emails have synced, I’ll give that all some more thought later…….
On reflection this really is a case of local optimisation, teams doing their best locally not understanding the impact to the wider value stream by making changes within a specific team. Often this happens as there is no clear strategy in these areas and no idea of who is impacted when change is made.
Our IT support teams are busy implementing the latest security standards and policies without balancing that risk reduction versus the massive inefficiency and creation of waste across the business.
Whilst we are driven to create amazing products and deliver great service to our customers, we also should not forget the engagement and motivation of our staff, I don’t mean via the annual engagement survey and “working parties”. What I’m talking about is from a strategy perspective understanding what you want to be good at as a business and how can you bring your teams with you.
If high staff motivation, engagement, effectiveness, low churn, autonomy and development are important to the organisation then put the measures of success in these areas clearly up on the wall. Let the teams know it’s important and encourage them to talk about these things all the time, that’s where agile and in particular Scrum help as they ensure regular discussions about feeling, happiness and effectiveness. Don’t let frustrations eat away at your teams motivation. The talented ones will walk away and those that stay will use the annual engagement survey for a good old rant.
Show you care, make maintaining and improving motivation and team efficiency and effectiveness part of your strategy. It needs to be encouraged culturally and needs support from an investment perspective, it won’t happen by magic.
Stay lean. Be agile.