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Building your team in 2015. RiverRhee Consulting Newsletter, January – February 2015

By RiverRhee Consulting, 2nd February 2015

We’ve had a busy start to the year delivering in-house training on management skills and performance reviews, and Janet Burton and Elisabeth Goodman are looking forward to delivering our popular “Introduction to Management” open access course in Melbourn (UK) in March. Details of this and other upcoming courses can be found at the end of this newsletter, or on the RiverRhee Consulting website.

We also like to add new skills to our portfolio each year, and thanks to Elisabeth’s recent accreditation, can now add the Belbin Team Roles alongside MBTI (Myers Briggs Type Indicator), and NLP (NeuroLinguisticProgramming). These tools can be very powerful not only to help us understand our individual strengths and make better use of them, but also to foster stronger relationships and communication both within and outside the team.

Whilst white water rafting may be one approach to building your team, it’s not the one that everyone would choose.  We thought we’d devote this newsletter to exploring how you could use personality tools and other approaches to engage your team members in building your team in 2015.

Using personality tools to develop the team

There is a whole host of tools available to help us better understand our own and other’s strengths, and so plan how we can make better use of these strengths to build stronger relationships and improved communication within a team.

Some people are concerned about the risk of being ‘put in boxes’, but it is the individual’s choice to share their profile or not. At any rate, we can all choose to and do behave differently from our profiles, and we can and do learn skills in areas that are not our natural strengths.

As accredited practitioners, RiverRhee Associates can help your team explore the ethical and constructive use of such tools as Belbin Team Roles, MBTI (Myers Briggs Type Indicator), and NLP (NeuroLinguisticProgramming) for developing your team.

MBTI summary slide

MBTI summary slide


Defining a common team purpose and goals

Strong teams don’t just rely on good working relationships. They are also aligned around a clear team purpose and goals: the ‘why’ and the ‘what’ of their day-to-day existence. Having common values will also enable team members to work together more effectively and so become a high performance team.

As Elisabeth describes in Chapter 3 of her recently published “The Effective Team’s High Performance Workbook”, “a team’s vision sets out what it aspires to do. It is a futuristic statement .. [that] is meant to inspire the team and attract its stakeholders to do business with it.” So a team might have a vision something like this: “we are recognised as a centre of excellence in what we do. Our peers consult us as a role model for how they too can excel in their work.”

The Effective Team's High Performance Workbook, RiverRhee Publishing, 2014

The Effective Team’s High Performance Workbook, RiverRhee Publishing, 2014

As for goals, the ideal is to have a cascade from the organisation’s objectives, through to those of each department and team and hence to the individual: a joined up approach that not all organisations that we work with find easy to achieve.

Finally, as also described in the book, “values represent how we go about our work: how we see ourselves, what we would like others to hear about us, what we feel is important.” These values might include expertise in the team’s area of work, being attentive and responsive to customers, or always behaving with integrity. Team building events are a good opportunity for people to share what values they care about, and which ones they could align themselves around as a team.

Identifying and agreeing opportunities to enhance working practices

Team building events are also a golden opportunity to review working practices, and to engage everyone in how these could be improved. As external facilitators, we help people to articulate what could be improved, and how, if needs be anonymously. We collate all of the suggestions for improvement, as well as confirmation of what is working well, and so facilitate constructive discussions during the team building event.

Areas covered in past events have included internal communication, clarity of roles, managing workloads, meeting management and more. Again, a full list of potential working practices to explore, along with suggestions for the pre-workshop diagnostic, can be found in “The Effective Team’s High Performance Workbook”.

Upcoming courses and events

We are delighted that John Riddell and Elisabeth Goodman’s application to present a masterclass on “How to add value to your organisation as a ‘knowledge facilitator’” at CILIP’s 2015 conference has just been accepted. This interactive session will give us an opportunity to share and explore insights from our book: “Knowledge Management in the Pharmaceutical Industry”, Gower, 2014 and more!

Details of all our upcoming courses and events are kept up-to-date on the RiverRhee Consulting website. Here is what is coming up in the next few months:

  • Managing Change (with One Nucleus and Cogent) – 23rd February, Melbourn (UK)
  • Elisabeth Goodman will be co-presenting at the APM Midlands branch event – How to keep programmes on track and teams inspired during periods of change, 24th February, Nottingham
  • Introduction to Management (with One Nucleus and Cogent ) – 17th-19th March, Melbourn (UK)
  • Effective Project Planning and Management(with TFPL) – 23rd April, London
  • Introduction to Lean and Six Sigma (with One Nucleus and Cogent), 27th April, Melbourn (UK)

If you would like to find out more

Do get in touch if you would like to find out more about RiverRhee Consulting, our range of off-site and in-house workshops, and how we can help you to create exceptional managers and teams in 2015.  See the RiverRhee Consulting website or e-mail the author at elisabeth@riverrhee.com.


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Looking back on 2014 and forward to 2015. RiverRhee Consulting Newsletter, November – December 2014

RiverRhee Consulting, 11th December 2014


December is traditionally a time when many of us reflect on our achievements, what we have learned and what we can look forward to in the coming year.

2014 has been our most active and varied year so far, in the just over five years of RiverRhee’s existence. We thought we would share a little about our achievements and our learning, and several things that might be of interest to you in 2015 under the headings:

  • Developing management and interpersonal skills
  • Managing and dealing with change
  • Continuous improvement
  • Knowledge management
  • Strategy facilitation
  • Upcoming courses

Developing management and interpersonal skills is an important area for growing SMEs as well as larger organisations

Interest in Elisabeth Goodman’s and Janet Burton’s off-site courses and customised in-house training and coaching for new managers and supervisors has really taken off in 2014. Our client base for management related skills is continuing to expand with bookings for January through to March 2015.

Delegates at our Introduction to Management course, September 2014

Delegates at our Introduction to Management course, September 2014

We have learnt that some SMEs can spare the time for people to attend our off-site 3-day Introduction to Management course and really appreciate the opportunity to network with and learn from colleagues from other companies.

Equally important though, is our ability to customise our Supervisor Training course so that the content and duration match what other clients would prefer to have delivered in-house. Elisabeth and Janet ran one such course for Red Balloon, Cambridge and subsequently shared the experience in the blog “There will never be enough time

Sometimes our support takes the form of short coaching sessions with individual managers – we did some of this in 2014, and are due to do more in 2015.

How to enhance team effectiveness is one of the topics included in supervisor and management training, and Elisabeth recently published “The Effective Team’s High Performance Workbook”, now available through Amazon as well as through the RiverRhee publishing page.

We’ve also found that SMEs appreciate the help we can give them in reviewing and rolling out improved performance review and appraisal processes . And we have used Elisabeth’s and Lorraine Warne’s skills in MBTI (Myers Briggs Type Indicator) and NLP (NeuroLinguisticProgramming) to help individuals understand their strengths and enhance their interpersonal skills.

Managing and dealing with change is a big topic of interest

We have run workshops and delivered seminars on the subject of change for Library and Information organisations (CILIP, UKeIG, Health Libraries Group), and at Project Management (APM) events in 2014 (see for example “Common factors for managing successful change“).

Changing the way we change - APM event at GSK June 2014

Changing the way we change – APM event at GSK June 2014

This subject continues to be something that people would like more help with, so that they can make change happen in a more positive and effective way.

We have introduced a new off-site course on Managing Change for Life Science organisations in 2015 and look forward to finding out how popular this will be.

Elisabeth Goodman became the ‘pillar lead’ for Capabilities and Methods in the APM Enabling Change SIG, and this is already giving her access to new knowledge to bring into our work with clients. We also recently heard that Elisabeth’s jointly authored article with Lucy Loh’s “Organizational Change: A Critical Challenge for Team Effectiveness” is to be included in a collection of such articles in an academic work entitled “Change Leadership” edited by Colette Dumas and Richard H. Beinecke which will be published by SAGE Publications in May 2015.

There continues to be an appetite for continuous improvement

We have continued to run in-house courses on Lean and Six Sigma, and are now offering this also as an off-site course in 2015. In fact, this is one of three courses (the other two being Introduction to Management, and Managing Change) that we are now accredited to deliver through Cogent as another source of potential subsidised funding for SMEs. (Elisabeth also continues to be a registered coach and trainer with the GrowthAccelerator programme and organised a fairly well attended free event with them at Babraham Science Park in the summer.)

We delivered a half-day version of the Lean and Six Sigma course as one of two seminars with Janet Burton for the Herts Chamber of Commerce, and there are prospects of delivering more of these in 2015.

We facilitated some in-house continuous improvement with an academic organisation during 2014, and a few of the delegates who visited our stand at One Nucleus’ recent Genesis event also expressed interest to Sue Parkins and John Riddell in potential support from us in this area in 2015.

(By the way, Sue joined our team of associates during 2014, along with Paul Hadland, Rose Bolton and Margie Gardiner.  We shared a little more about the team under the theme of “What motivates us in our work“.)

Look out for Elisabeth’s next book on the topic of continuous improvement in 2015: “The Effective Team’s Operational Excellence Workbook”.

Our work in knowledge management has picked up some new momentum

The big news was the publication of Elisabeth and John’s book with Gower “Knowledge Management in the Pharmaceutical Industry” at the end of August. An immediate outcome was that we were invited to give an “inspiring” talk to help a Pharmaceutical company develop its knowledge management strategy.

Knowledge Management in the Pharmaceutical Industry, by Elisabeth Goodman and John Riddell

Knowledge Management in the Pharmaceutical Industry, by Elisabeth Goodman and John Riddell

Elisabeth also delivered a session on Knowledge Management to IMPI earlier in the year on behalf of TFPL, and worked with the Open University Library Services to carry out an audit and facilitate a stakeholder workshop for their metadata project.

Our strategy facilitation skills have been in demand

We returned to the EU organisation that Elisabeth and Lorraine Warne had worked with in 2013 to help them shape their forward strategy.

We called in another independent consultant, Janette Thomas, at the start of the year to help us with a strategic workshop with a health research organisation.

And Elisabeth has been working with a government organisation to facilitate a workshop and a focus group to help shape one of their strategies.

Upcoming courses

Details of our upcoming courses and events are kept up-to-date on our website. Here is what the list is looking like at the moment:

If you would like to find out more

Do get in touch if you would like to find out more about RiverRhee Consulting, our range of off-site and in-house workshops, and how we can help you to create exceptional managers and teams in 2015.  See the RiverRhee Consulting website or e-mail the author at elisabeth@riverrhee.com.

Meanwhile, we wish you a healthy and happy end of year and start to 2015…


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Summer and the 3 Cs. RiverRhee Consulting Newsletter, July-August 2013

Collecting, connecting, creating

As Elisabeth Goodman mentioned in her recent blog – Umbrella 2013, a view from a CILIP trainer – there are some common themes in Information and Knowledge management in terms of collecting information and knowledge in a form that can be made accessible to others, and then connecting people to these assets, and to each other to really make that information and knowledge flow.

The ultimate goal of these activities is of course to enable us to create ideas and opportunities that will lead to incremental improvements in what we do, or to break-through innovations.

We thought this would be a great theme for our summer newsletter as summer holidays are traditionally a time to collect new experiences or to simply relax and pick up pebbles on the beach; to connect with friends and family or our own inner thoughts; and to create new energy and ideas for the coming months.



A lot of RiverRhee Consulting’s work also centres around these 3 Cs: we help teams to collect facts, perceptions and insights relating to what they do; to reflect and connect with these insights and with each other; and to then create and implement improvements to their work as a team.


Any effective initiative makes use of sound facts and data.  Information and Library professionals have a vital role to play in helping to make the wealth of in-house and external information more accessible to individuals within an organisation.

We are now all ‘knowledge workers’, and so tapping into what we already know should be a prerequisite for anything that we undertake.  It is something that the APM and Project Managers continue to be passionate about in advocating the collection and sharing of ‘lessons learned’ before, during and at the end of any project.

Operational teams can also benefit from collecting facts and data on their work, and this is something that we support through the use of team ‘temperature checks’ or diagnostics, and as part of the Lean Sigma ‘Measure’ phase as input for analysis and discussion in team workshops.




Elisabeth Goodman has been doing one-to-one consultations using the MBTI (Myers Briggs Type Indicator) psychometric tool to help people gain a deeper understanding of their strengths and of how they can use these insights in both their personal development and in their interactions with others.  This makes MBTI a powerful tool for team building activities – and Elisabeth will also be using this in her work with a client in September.

One of the four dichotomies in MBTI describes where we prefer to focus and draw on our energy.  In a sense this is also about how we prefer to connect: outwardly in interaction with others, or inwardly through quiet reflection.  (Of course, as with the other dichotomies, many of us will like a mixture of both.)

Information and Knowledge Management resources and processes also provide the means for connecting with hardcopy or electronic resources, and for connecting with other people either individually or as part of a community.  Elisabeth’s latest article in her and John Riddell’s ‘Knowledge Management Surgery’ explores how understanding the MBTI personality profiles could help with many aspects of Knowledge Management.

NLP is also a powerful tool that we have been using to foster personal understanding and for team building.  Lorraine Warne and Elisabeth are running a workshop in Cambridge on the 24th July Increasing your Personal Effectiveness, which will give delegates an opportunity to explore both of these techniques alongside each other.




This brings us back to the last of our 3 Cs that we mentioned in our introduction.  If we have our facts and data, our experiences, our insights, and reflect on them individually or with others, we can start to identify new ways of doing things.  We can come up with new products, services, improvements to our processes, and ways to achieve a high performing team.  We can be in the flow, enjoy what we do and achieve great things!

Speaking of which, John and Elisabeth have completed the body of our book – Knowledge Management in the Pharmaceutical Industry – and are now reviewing the content with contributors.  We anticipate getting the final product to our publisher, Gower, by then end of the year, 10+ months ahead of our delivery date…

If you’d like to find out more

Do get in touch if you’d like to find out more about RiverRhee Consulting, our range of off-site and in-house workshops, and how we can help you to enhance team effectiveness and create an exceptional team.  See the RiverRhee Consulting website or e-mail the author at elisabeth@riverrhee.com.

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Developing your team in 2013. RiverRhee Consulting Newsletter, Jan – Feb 2013

Developing your team in 2013

When RiverRhee Consulting started up in 2009 much of the Western world was already experiencing economic problems. There has been little let up since.

Companies have a choice at this time to tighten their belts and/or to invest in the development of their staff in anticipation of better years to come.  Some of our clients have chosen to do the latter, and it is thanks to them that we can continue to offer a rich portfolio of training for the coming year.

Our January – February 2013 bi-monthly newsletter therefore focuses on our range of training, and how it could help you to develop your team in 2013.

Customer relationship management and change management

It may on first sight seem strange to discuss customer relationship management and change management in the same breath, but both of these activities require listening to and understanding your stakeholders in the context of your business objectives, and then shaping and delivering your products and services, communication, training and / or support accordingly.

Our revised UKeIG course Marketing and internal change: a case study based approach… , that Elisabeth Goodman is delivering in conjunction with Shaida Dorabjee, explores this association in more detail.

Our off-site Change Management courses have been amongst our most popular over the years.  Other courses scheduled for 2013 include:

As with all of our courses, we can develop tailored versions for delivery within your organisation.  Our course with CILIP is an example of one such offering:

We can also deliver an updated version of our original course for the CILIP East of England branch:

Operational excellence, Process Improvement, Lean and Six Sigma

Many organisations are looking for ways to ensure that they deliver quality to their customers whilst managing growing demands on their time, with limited resources (‘doing more with what you’ve got’).

The Lean and Six Sigma principles and tool-set are variations on approaches that people have used to improve the way they work over countless years, and they are continuing to evolve.

Our interactive workshops have been very popular, and have enabled our clients to identify ways to improve their processes and address their challenges, as they learn.

Our scheduled course for 2013 is:

Other courses a-waiting scheduling, available on demand or that can be customised for your needs include:

Knowledge Management

Although this concept has also been around for many years, project and operational teams still grapple with how to make the most of the internal and external insights and expertise available to them.  We have a course available through CILIP, and can also help people make the most of social media tools such as LinkedIn to meet this need.

Project Management

Project management techniques can be applied to individuals’ everyday work, to broader team goals, or to an organisation’s more strategic programme of work.  The approaches involved are not rocket-science – but with careful planning and on-going management, individuals, teams, and organisations as a whole can ensure that they achieve their operational and strategic goals to the desired time, cost and quality in as painless a way as possible. These are examples of the training that we provide or can customise for your needs:

Enhancing team effectiveness

Being able to help your team to work more effectively is what we are most passionate about.  All of our courses are variations on this theme.  But we can also address the effectiveness of your team as a whole: personal awareness, relationship building, team development and more.  Here are examples of the courses that we can deliver for you, including our first one to explicitly include MBTI (Myers Briggs Type Indicator):

If you’d like to find out more

Do get in touch if you’d like to find out more about RiverRhee Consulting, our range of off-site and in-house courses, and how we can help you to enhance team effectiveness and create an exceptional team.  See the RiverRhee Consulting website or e-mail the author at elisabeth@riverrhee.com.

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Personality types, teamwork and innovation. RiverRhee Consulting Newsletter, Sept-Oct 2012

Autumn is proving a very busy time!

These early months of autumn are proving a busy and fascinating time for RiverRhee Consulting Associates.  Our work has been very diverse and has included:

  • Applying an understanding of personality types to our work with teams that are experiencing significant change and implementing Open Innovation.
  • Working at the interface of the Myers Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) and NLP (NeuroLinguistic Programming).
  • Applying our expertise in Knowledge Management to help establish Communities of Practice.

In reflecting on the breadth of our work, we thought you might be interested in how an understanding of personality types and mindsets can help with teamwork and innovation.

MBTI (Myers Briggs Type Indicator) and NLP (NeuroLinguistic Programming)

There is of course a whole range of psychometric and related tools available to help us get a better understanding of ourselves, our personal strengths, and how our individual preferred ways of behaving affect our interactions with each other.

Elisabeth Goodman has been helping the Babraham Bioscience Technologies team and some of their colleagues in the Babraham Institute in Cambridge to do just that: to help them prepare for some significant changes expected from a major growth in their client base.

One of the tools we use is the Myers Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI), which describes four preference pairs, and 16 personality types that reflect how people prefer to behave.  We can all of course display aspects of each of the 4 preferences at some time or other and what we experience and our own development will help us to do this more over time, but we will always keep our intrinsic preferences.

Very briefly, the 4 pairs address how we prefer to:

  • Direct and take in energy – through a more dynamic interaction with others, or through more individual reflection (Extravert and Intravert)
  • Take in information – through a more precise use of our five senses, or through a more intuitive, ‘bigger picture’ approach (Sensing and Intuition)
  • Make decisions – with a greater focus on logic, and cause and effect, or a greater focus on what we and others might be feeling (Thinking and Feeling)
  • Generally approach what we do – in a fairly structured way that seeks closure sooner rather than later, or in a more exploratory, open-ended way. (Judging and Perceiving)

It turns out that there is a strong relationship between MBTI and NLP.  Lorraine Warne ran a 3-day Coaching Diploma in Cambridge which included looking at how the NLP “Meta Programmes” influence values and behaviours.  The “Meta Programmes” are based on the MBTI model.  It helps new coaches understand how others communicate within a team environment and gives them greater flexibility in how they do so.

Applying personality types to teamwork

An understanding of our own personality type, and that of others’ in the team not only helps us in communication as mentioned above, but in everything that we do together.

Our preferences will influence every aspect of our interactions: how we share information, tackle problems and projects, make decisions, innovate and respond to change.  Understanding the diversity of the personality types within your team will enable team leaders and members to draw on individual strengths, interact more effectively and be aware of and address any potential blind spots!

Personality types and innovation

Elisabeth introduced the MBTI personality types to delegates at a recent 3-day course on Open Innovation in R&D with OI Pharma Partners and WTG Training.  We will be running this again in January!

It’s fascinating to understand how different types are drawn to the different phases1 of innovation in open innovation networks and collaboration or partnerships and through crowd-sourcing platforms:

  • Defining the problem to be addressed, or solution to be offered
  • Discovering all the potential ideas ‘out there’
  • Deciding on the ideas to be adopted
  • Delivering them through implementation

The Sensing and Intuition pair come into play in exploring ideas: where those with a Sensing preference might look for more incremental improvements, those with an Intuition preference tend to look for more original (or “disruptive”) ideas.

The Judging and Perceiving preferences are important in implementing the ideas: those with a Perceiving preference tend to want to ensure that options have been fully explored, whereas those with a Judging preference tend to drive towards closure.

Lucy Loh has also been looking at the profiles of innovators and entrepreneurs in terms of the thinking styles they use in a series of workshops that she’s been running on Innovation, Entrepreneurship and Commercial skills.

Elisabeth and Lucy will be exploring these themes further in November in their seminar “How can Personalities and Mindsets Influence Creativity and Innovation?” at the Stevenage BioScience Catalyst OI Summit on 15th November.

A quick mention about some other things RiverRhee Consulting Associates have been involved with.

John Riddell has been working with Knoco Ltd where he is supporting the start-up of several Communities of Practice (CoPs) in Belgium, Europe and the USA.  The work for two of these will be carried out virtually, which should pose some interesting challenges!

Elisabeth also led a half-day workshop on “Healthy Change” with Pelican Coaching and Development.  The focus was on helping the team involved to understand the change process and cope with their reactions to change in a mutually supportive way.  We drew on ideas from the ‘Being Resilient’ book to support this.

If you’d like to find out more

Do get in touch if you’d like to find out more about RiverRhee Consulting, our range of off-site and in-house courses, and how we can help you to not only enhance team effectiveness but create an exceptional team.  See the RiverRhee Consulting website or e-mail the author at elisabeth@riverrhee.com.

1. Based on: “Introduction to Type and Innovation”, by Damian Killen and Gareth Williams, Introduction to Type Series. CPP, Inc. Mountain View, California.

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Creating Exceptional Teams – RiverRhee Consulting Newsletter – June 2012

From effective to exceptional teams

RiverRhee Consulting Associates help teams to be more effective and efficient so that they can be more productive and generally happier in what they do.  Inspired by Dr Rob Yeung’s book “E is for Exceptional” recently reviewed by Elisabeth GoodmanBanishing Monday morning blues: Being Exceptional”, we’d like to devote this newsletter to exploring how teams might cultivate capabilities for being not only effective but exceptional in their work.

First a quick round-up of some of the things we’ve been doing

John Riddell and Elisabeth Goodman ran an in-house workshop for a local business to introduce them to Lean and Six Sigma.   This was very well received: “We have already started using the DMAIC model to support a number of issues/discussions. [For example we’ve] started the process to Define quality across our 4 task force areas.”

Having previously run a 1-day workshop on Lean and Six Sigma for Abcam’s PDM team in the UK, Elisabeth travelled to Cambridge Massachusetts to run a half-day taster version for the managers there, and a day’s workshop (in 2 half-days) for the Logistics team.

John and Elisabeth have made a good start on “Knowledge Management in the Pharmaceutical Industry” for Gower, and are enjoying interviewing current and past practitioners across a range of businesses and occupations.  We’re still interested in hearing from others who might like to contribute their experiences and insights so do get in touch if you’d like to.

Elisabeth’s article: “Information Analysis – A Lean and Six Sigma case study” was published in Business Information Review 2012; 29 83-86.

The following descriptions of how teams could become not only effective but exceptional in their work are based on our own experiences and insights from what we do, as well as those of Dr Rob Yeung.

1.    Encouraging each team member towards their ‘authentic’ role

In a high-performing (or exceptional) team everyone is performing at their best, doing what they enjoy most.  It should be possible for individual team members’ roles to be shaped to get as close to their ‘authentic’ roles as possible.

Enlightened individuals take an ‘intrapreneurial’ or ‘self-employed’ attitude to their work.  Enlightened managers help individuals through their career progression within the organisation or outside it.  Performance reviews should be an opportunity to shape the job to the individual, not just shape the individual to the job.

2.    Living a team vision

A team vision should be compelling for all team members, both when it starts up and on an on-going basis.

This kind of awareness of a team’s or organisation’s vision is also invaluable for effective business improvement or change management.  Putting a planned organisational, product, service or other work-related change into the context of the overall vision focuses the team member’s minds on the value (or otherwise) of making the change, and on how to communicate the change to stakeholders.

3.    Daring to deliver the team’s best performance

Team members that dare have the courage to challenge the status quo, or respond to feedback from customers, which may instigate a significant change in direction.  They will suggest solutions that no-one else has thought of (or dared to suggest).  They will express or encourage disagreement with changes that others are confidently pushing through.

A team that dares actively pursues and ‘treasures’ each problem it discovers as another step in tackling the complexity of what we do.

4.     Cultivating a spirit of continuous learning and creativity

Google, IBM, LinkedIn encourage their employees to spend 5-20% of their time on a project that they are personally interested in.

Teams that consciously make time to absorb new ideas, think, question and speculate will be better placed to produce new insights and breakthroughs.  Applying Lean and Six Sigma techniques to a team’s work can free up in the order of 20% of their time for this kind of activity.

Investing in time to learn before, during and after events, both within the team and with others outside it will also reap its rewards.

5.    Cherishing relationships within and outside the team

Building relationships and rapport with customers, suppliers and sponsors will position a team for exceptional success.  It will enhance their understanding of the value they can and do deliver and give them the support they need for getting their work done.  It will provide them with new knowledge and insights to feed their learning and creativity.

Nurturing relationships and rapport within the team will enhance mutual understanding, knowledge sharing, a healthy exchange of views and opinions and the ability to draw on the diverse strengths within the team.

6.    Fostering a core of calm

Some teams that we work with operate in a quite frenetic environment.  Others are facing quite dramatic change.  The ability to come back to a ‘core of calm’ will make an important difference to team members’ ability to renew their energy and face another day.

Some of the things we’ve observed that help teams to achieve this include:  regular ‘stand-up’ meetings to review performance and learnings against targets, 1:1 discussions between the team leader and individual members, Friday cake or pizza gatherings.

7.    Exercising integrity in the community

At the end of the day, the reputation of the team is what will determine its success.  If clients cannot trust them they will not come again, and may deter others from doing so.  A team’s activeness in its community will enhance its visibility.  A sustainable approach to the environment is increasingly becoming a pre-requisite.  This ‘citizenship’ behaviour may be the final requirement for becoming an exceptional team.

A final note on the RiverRhee team

We have a new Associate, Lorraine Warne, joining our team.  Lorraine is a performance coach and trainer, and her qualifications include Master Practitioner in NLP and a Post Grad certification in Education.  A recent testimonial from a client included: “No one I have met has the ability to transmit enthusiasm and to motivate people like Lorraine. She has empathy as her second nature and fine ability to respond to her clients’ issues by providing fresh perspectives and alternative dimensions. She is skilled in isolating problems from their secondary issues of anxiety, shock and displacement, and in then rebuilding people into a new state of self confidence and enhanced self-esteem.”

Do get in touch if you would like to discuss some of the ways in which Lorraine and the rest of our team can help your team become more effective and even exceptional.

To find out more about RiverRhee Consulting, our range of off-site and in-house courses, see the RiverRhee Consulting website or e-mail the author at elisabeth@riverrhee.com


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