Jana M. Kemp, “Moving Out of the Box: Tools for Team Decision Making"
Praeger Publishers | 2007 | ISBN: 0275997065 | 184 pages | PDF | 1,1 MB
Project teams are the rule rather than the exception in today's organizations. But thanks to the pressure of performance goals, conflicting agendas, and political jockeying, few teams make superior decisions consistently. Instead, team members communicate poorly or not at all, avoid provocative discussion, occasionally stab each other in the back, or in many other ways forget that their job is to make decisions that lead the company forward. Jana Kemp, an authority on team decision making, saves the day by offering tested methods and tools team members and their leaders can use to ratchet up the performance level. That not only makes team projects more successful--it makes work fun. Kemp argues that the way to make good decisions is to have an expansive group conversation that leads to sound decisions and swift execution. Sounds simple, but in most organizations, making a decision and seeing it through can become an exercise in frustration for managers and employees alike. At one end of the spectrum are "command-and-control" decisions, proclaimed from on-high and implemented through the ranks. Without input or buy-in from those affected by the decision, this approach can lead to resentment and backlash. At the other end are purely collaborative, consensus decisions that often lead to inoffensive, weak choices and sub-par results. As Jana Kemp shows in Moving Out of the Box, there's a time for consensus, and a time for command and control--and a time to integrate both approaches. Her practical tools, honed through application in groups of all types and sizes, ensure that team members have the know-how to make effective decisions that have an impact on an organization's results. Providing examples of successes and failures, as well as interactive and diagnostic exercises, she identifies five decision-making profiles, and shows how to steer your group into the most effective one. The five profiles: *Anti-survival. The naysayers have control. Surprisingly, sometimes they should be listened to. *Boxed-in. When no one can come up with fresh ideas, it's time to think out of the box. *Neutral. Nobody terribly excited or negative? Don't worry, sometimes this isn't a bad place to be to make a good decision. *Engaged enthusiasm. If you can get the team into this attitude, chances are that a good decision will result and follow-through will occur. *Extreme excitement. Most teams leaders think this is where the team needs to be to make a good decision. It's nice, but not required. Each profile or group dynamic is well defined and includes scenarios, exercises, quizzes, sample questions, and other conversation starters. The book ends with a blueprint for putting decisions into action. All in all, this handbook will help improve group and individual communication, problem solving, decision making, and execution, regardless of the task at hand.
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