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By Brian Moore - Joint Executive Officer of Mthimkhulu International - South African-grown and based National and International providers of Transformational Team-building© through the Celebrating Humanity© series of programmes.
South African companies are either under pressure to transform and include people from all backgrounds in a fair and equitable manner, or once transformed are often challenged by poor inter-diversity relationships and understanding of the need for transformation.
Teambuilding for Diverse Organisations
The biggest challenge facing companies, teams and organisations is the diverse nature of their team members. They have been raised differently, communicate differently and value different things is different ways. This can set the stage for some very difficult times in the workplace. Here follow 8 of 10 key steps to ensure that your teambuild is successful.
(Please go to www.celebrating-humanity-projects.com/10steps.pdf for the full article.
In order to develop ourselves and our team at work we need to develop an understanding of our dependency, independency and inter-dependency. Once we understand that we need each other to survive and succeed we will observe that our actions, positive or negative, impact ourselves, our teams and our dependents.
Knowing who we are...
Accountability for who we are...
To further develop a nurturing environment we develop problem-solving and solution-finding skills and learn to handle reactions to external stimuli.
Often we act out of historical programming when a short time for thought will break the cycle of anger. When we use the feeling of anger as a signal for thought, "Why am I feeling this anger?" or "Is this person saying this to hurt me?", we have an opportunity to respond rather than react. This can saves lives, families, sales and relationships!
Who adds to me and what do we contribute from our backgrounds, cultures, experience and traditions?
Through enjoyable, safe and non-threatening methodologies and processes we are able to learn - from each other - more about our lives, history, cultures and religions. In teams, selected by delegates on the basis of "who adds to me", we are able to compete in fun and respectful ways on issues of diversity. In this way a safe environment of communication and life-long learning is created.
As these processes unfold team members will begin to identify and break down old prejudicial paradigms and the foundations are laid for an ongoing respect based inter-personal team agreement.
Accountability for how we behave
Most companies and organisation send down a list of management-decided values. Very few people know, remember and subscribe to the values, especially management. These values are only paraded at disciplinary hearings.
In order for individual change to be perpetuated within the team it is critical that the environment is kept safe and empowering by a team-decided and managed set of interpersonal values. These values are set to manage how team members interact and do not impact or negate corporate values.
This people-centred guidance system, if properly designed and implemented, will develop an ethic of praising and honouring the praiseworthy.
Those who have personal challenges will often need professional support and those who continuously break the rules must be disciplined.
Regular meeting time must be committed to allow the development of understanding and to offer guidance to those who break their self-chosen values. The greater team manages the ongoing process offering support, guidance and discipline in a properly constituted system.
In this way we will have developed accountability and responsibility for our actions, within our team and an ongoing values structures to maintain respect and teamwork at the level of human interaction. This will definitely and positively impact family and social interactions.
Involve all Leadership
A good leadership team will be part of the development and ongoing implementation of the program and will be subject to the decisions of the structure.
Assess, Adjust and Motivate!
A follow-up team-build, assessment and adjustment program should be facilitated approximately 12 months after the Values Circle process is formally constituted. With 1 year history of monthly meetings groups will have transformed substantially and be ready to cement the process into the future.
Through this Transformational Team-building© program, people will understand their amazing relevance as individuals, team members & members of their organisations.