Kevin Duncan, author of The Diagrams Book, has trained thousands of people, and it became apparent to him that many find it hard to express ideas and solve problems purely with words.
Diagrams are superb for organising your own thinking. Here, Kevin shares 3 diagrams to aid problem-solving:
THE FIVE DYSFUNCTIONS OF A TEAM PYRAMID
- Absence of trust. This stems from an unwillingness to be vulnerable within the group. Those who are not open about mistakes and weaknesses make it impossible to build trust.
- Fear of conflict. Teams that lack trust are incapable of engaging in unfiltered debate.
- Lack of commitment. Without having aired their opinions openly, team members rarely buy in or commit to decisions, though they may feign it.
- Avoidance of accountability. Without committing to a clear plan of action, even the most focused people fail to call their peers on counterproductive actions and behaviour.
- Inattention to results. Failure to hold one another accountable creates an environment where team members put their individual or departmental needs above those of the team.
Exercise: The model can be used effectively in any management team awayday. Discuss openly with the team how you can encourage the following: Trust (by overcoming invulnerability and admitting to weaknesses); Constructive conflict (to replace artificial harmony); Commitment (by removing ambiguity); Accountability (by raising low standards); and Inattention to results (by removing status and ego issues).
- THE IDEAL TEAM PLAYER VENN DIAGRAM
- Again according to Patrick Lencioni, there are three essential virtues that make someone the ideal team player:
Humble: humility is the single greatest and most indispensable attribute.
Hungry: these people are self-motivated and diligent.
Smart: these people demonstrate common sense when dealing with others (it’s not the same as intellectual smartness).
- Those with just one are fairly easy to spot:
Humble only = the pawn, who often gets left out.
Hungry only = the bulldozer, who often annoys everyone else.
Smart only = the charmer, with great social skills but low contribution.
- Those with 2 out of 3 are much harder to identify:
Humble and hungry = the accidental mess-maker, unaware of their effect on people.
Humble and smart = the lovable slacker, who only does as much as asked.
Hungry and smart = the skillful politician, out for their own benefit.
Exercise: Apply the technique to analyze hiring new staff, assessing current employees, developing those who are lacking in one or more of the virtues, or looking at your organization’s culture. Choose a team, examine their qualities, and plot them on the diagram. Use the analysis to promote understanding of who is performing what role.
- THE #NOW DIAGRAM
● According to Max McKeown in his book #Now, you can’t change the past, but you can change the future, and now is where everything can be changed.
- Nowists love moving and seek joy in doing things; they don’t waste their lives seeking happiness, so they seek it now; they make rapid, effortless decisions; they see sequences, and have a sense of where they are going; they are hard to stop and a force of nature; self-trusting, confident in their abilities; and have do-it energy.
● If you learn to embrace your haste, and love your Nowist nature, you can discover effortless action and decisions, embrace opportunities, obstacles and crises, and keep moving forward in a thoroughly positive way.
● Those living in the past are called Thenist – they suffer from loss, regret and worry. Nowists are more likely to achieve growth, joy and reward.
Exercise: We live in the present but carry the anxieties of the past and concerns about the future with us at all times. Envisage a task or situation. Remove all baggage by breaking with the past. Forget the future too – it will come soon enough. Then work out precisely what your approach to this issue is right now. Now do that.
- THE GATEKEEPER CIRCLE
- Anyone working in a service industry (over 80% of the Gross Domestic Product of both the UK and the USA) will often be strung between the customer and what their company can realistically do.
- In this respect, anyone in sales, account management, customer service, and scores of other roles are effectively the gatekeeper of the relationship between the customer and the company.
- It’s a tricky place to be, and can leave the individual torn between the two sides, somewhat like the Roman god Janus, who is usually depicted with two faces, one facing the past and the other the future (hence January).
- Confident leaders need to become comfortable with this apparent contradiction.
- Looking outward, they should advise and educate customers, whilst resisting unreasonable demands.
- Looking inward, they should protect, lead and motivate their staff so that they can provide an excellent service, without fear.
Exercise: Consider the nature of your, or your company’s, relationship with the customer. Imagine your role as double-sided. Separate the apparent contradiction between the two perspectives. Then draw up an approach for each view. Now understand the dual nature of the job for yourself, or explain it to colleagues.
Comments are closed