How to Build a Culture of High Performance
Step 1: Shift from critic to ally.
Here’s a three-step formula to clearly communicate that you’re an ally and not a critic.
- Empathize. If they’re struggling, acknowledge how hard or frustrating or annoying or painful that must be.
- Express confidence. Let them know you believe in their ability to handle the challenge they’re facing.
- Ask permission. Ask them if they would be willing to think with you about the situation.
Step 2: Identify an energizing outcome.
Once they’ve said "yes,” it’s tempting to go back into the problem — the frustrating past.(“Let’s talk about that disruptive team member.”) But don’t go there. Not yet.
Instead, focus on the energizing future they want to create.
Step 3: Discover a hidden opportunity.
When you’re both clear about the outcome they want, then you can revisit the problem. But this time, instead of trying to “solve” it, you’re asking, “How can this problem help unachieved the energizing outcome?” How might it be a good thing?
Step 4: Create a level-10 plan.
In this step, you guide them to brainstorm ways of capitalizing on that opportunity, and choosing and committing to a plan of action to achieve it. The term “level-10” plan means that when we ask, “On a scale of 1-10, how confident are you that you will execute this plan?,” the answer is a resounding 10.
What’s important isn't that the plan succeeds, but that they follow through on taking a new action, assessing the results, and continually moving forward.
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