THINKING BUSINESS
a blog by Chris Barrow

Needles, Haystacks (and bad apples) – building a championship support team

Building a team is one thing, identifying the needles in the haystack is another.

Sadly, the chances of you building a “needlestack” are very slim.

So an element of compromise is necessary in your approach to creating a championship support team.

The needles will be those individuals who go the extra mile and light up the room when they enter.

They cannot be categorised by gender, age, education or ethnicity – they just “are”.

There are no “needle training courses” – it’s an innate ability.

The compromise is to promote the needles into positions of leadership and/or management, accepting that the “haystack” element of your team just want to show up and be told what to do – then go home.

That’s fine.

At the risk of mixing my metaphors, you do have to keep an eye out for bad apples and get them out quickly.

With my clients, I use a Performance/Behaviour Matrix to identify the needles, the haystack and the bad apples.

A copy is attached here as a free download.

Try this exercise:

  1. Flip chart and pen

  2. Divide the flip chart sheet into the quadrants on the attached PDF

  3. Post-it notes

  4. Write the initials of each team member on a Post-it note

  5. Apply the Post-it notes to the appropriate quadrant on the flip chart

You will very soon see what I mean.

Performance & Behaviour Matrix

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