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One meeting that changed the team's attitude!

Updated: Nov 2, 2020

Story: Dileep Kumar, Team Lead

Discussions and meetings are meant to direct towards a constructive output. If not handled properly, they become a platform for employees to point out other shortcomings, induce politics and lead to no where.

As competition prevails in the Corporates, the employees don’t hesitate to convert any situation in their favor. Everyone will try to take the credit for the positive outcomes and will blame others for the negative outcomes. Presence of employees with mediocre talent aggravates these situations.

I had to face a typical situation of handling such situation in my group while team restructuring. Considering the rapid pace of the company’s growth, we had to hire a few managers from other companies in addition to the existing force to set-up mid-level management. Even though the idea was to manage the work better, introduce new approaches and optimize the growth opportunities, new challenges also came along.

The situation was:

The existing managers failed to understand the presence of new hires, the new hires boasted about being better than the existing managers, without even proper understanding. While the team meeting was supposed to be focusing on a balanced set up of new teams, the focus completely shifted to everyone’s individual priorities. Everyone wanted a very big team with them; and so, everyone’s focus shifted to pointing out at others weaknesses.

My ideal expectation: Everyone should have focused on discussing both strengths and weaknesses of all the managers and then take decisions based on what is best for the group.

With my focus still intact, I had to take various meetings personally to understand their points and see the validity of their points. As it was not heading anywhere, I changed my strategy.

I called all the managers for a meeting and fixed a single agenda, where in each manager had to talk only about the strengths of all other managers.

It came as a surprise to them. With slight hesitation and no deviations possible, everyone started adding a point. Finally this three-hour meeting ended on a very positive note. Even though the meeting was not focused on team set-up, the points highlighted by everyone led to change everyone’s thoughts towards each other.

In fact, some insightful conclusions came up in the subsequent discussions that led to setting up of the teams successfully.

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