Alignment – ensuring engagement in a team context.

The last post was about personal planning for this coming year and how by thinking through our plans in a structured manner provides the foundation for improved performance.

For an athlete in an individual sport this is a relatively simple process and was essentially the basis for the questions in the last post.  After all, it’s natural to think of ourselves first.  In team sports there is an added layer that needs to be factored in and this becomes more relevant to most of us in the corporate world.  Ensuring we are aligned with the team/organisation we are part of is key to ensuring we are engaged at work and productive.  Hence there are some key additional questions

  • Do we understand what the overall team/organisation goals are?
  • Are our goals and values aligned to those of the team/organisation?
  • How do our personal goals for the next year fit with these?
  • If not, can we adapt our personal goals to fit and, if so, how?
  • Are there any tensions between our own personal goals and those of our organisation/team?

Of course, if our answers to these questions result in us questioning continuing in our current role we may need an exit strategy.  For many, when this happens disengagement follows. After all, studies have shown that large proportions of the workforce in the western world are not fully engaged and in many cases actively disengaged from their work.  However, the sporting analogy might be helpful here.  For a professional footballer to lose heart, will inevitably lead to a drop in performance.  For someone looking for a move to another club this reduces the attractiveness of the player to another coach/manager and a consequential drop in value.  If we want to be seen as attractive to another organisation or team in our current work place we need to continue to demonstrate our value.  So there needs to be a strategy for improving performance in the current environment while ensuring that you market your talents to potential “buyers”.

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