A New Tool For You To Drive Higher Productivity & Engagement

This Week’s Focus Point

The greatest mistake you can make in life is to continually be afraid you will make one.” – Elbert Hubbard

Last week we touched briefly on some of the fears holding you and your teams back. There’s one in particular that is particularly prominent within Australian businesses and society.

Able to be traced back to 1864, ‘Tall Poppy Syndrome’ is the leveling derision of any Australian that assumes that he or she is better than any other Australian. The issue: it’s more often twisted into a corrosive derision of any stand out individual success.

This results in two critical and all too common fears within our workplaces:

  • The fear of standing too tall and being ‘cut down’, and
  • The fear of being left behind, and so, engaging in cutting others down.

The result: stifled innovation, low work engagement, diminished productivity.

This infectious culture is a difficult mountain to surmount for any leader.

So this week I’d like to give you another tool for your toolbox:

‘Blow Your Own Horn’ sessions.

A Blow Your Own Horn (BYOH) session is a regular (I recommend weekly) opportunity for your teams to meet together and safely discuss the achievements they are most proud of that week.

Anyone working on a project already engages in an impersonal alternative to this when participating in lesson learned reviews – but even these end up too focused on ‘what went wrong’, rather than ‘what went right’.

The rules for a BYOH session are simple:

  1. Only one person speaks at a time.
  2. Everyone must share at least one thing they are proud of that week. It doesn’t have to be work related.
  3. They should speak boldly and be free to boast. Storytelling and hyperbole are acceptable.
  4. These are not feedback sessions, successes are celebrated not refuted.

Depending on the size of the team these will take no more than 30mins a week.

There will be an initial awkwardness over the first few meetings as people adjust to the new self-promotional norm. This is where you, as a leader, must lead by example. Be candid and bold with what you share.

BYOH sessions attack the tall poppy syndrome within your teams by providing social permission to grow

Use this tool as often as you need to create the cultural shift from individual to collaborative, and watch your productivity, engagement and innovation grow.

Your Weekly Challenge

This week I challenge you to test it out.

Schedule and run a BYOH session.

Remember:

  1. Book 30 minutes to start with, you may end up needing far less.
  2. Only one person speaks at a time.
  3. Everyone must share at least one thing they are proud of that week. It doesn’t have to be work related.
  4. They should speak boldly and be free to boast. Storytelling and hyperbole are acceptable.
  5. These are not feedback sessions, successes are celebrated not refuted.
  6. Be candid and bold with what you share.
  7. Reflect, and send me a summary of how it went.

The benefits go beyond tackling tall poppy. These sessions help your team learn how to be self-promotional – a crucial skill in today’s highly competitive workplace.

This Week’s Thought Pulses

Leadership & Performance

If you don’t blow your own horn, there is no music” – Alan Weiss

Momentum & Energy

Standing tall in the face of derision and headwinds is a rare thing.
Don’t bet your success on finding those rare individuals.

Deafen the headwinds and make it easier for the majority to stand.

Delivery & Oversight

Are you focusing more on what went well or what went wrong?
Successful projects capitalise on their strengths.

Announcements

TOMORROW! FREE Webinar (Midday 2/5/19): Are you clear on your value? 5 key strategies to ensure your value is clear and achievable – an unmissable event where I will cover how to build, communicate and embed real value into your organisations, teams and self-practices. MORE INFORMATION AND SIGN UP HERE.

The GO TO PMO Vault: The GO TO PMO Vault provides everything you need to set-up, oversee, support and up-skill your organisational change. This includes access to a growing library of over 100 toolkits, frameworks, guidelines, workshops and training sessions that have culminated from years of experience and trend forecasts. It is now live!
To obtain access – contact me at brendon@bakercnv.com