A good number of members attended the Met Office in Exeter on 18 September to listen to a very different but inspirational insight in to the 5 Secrets for creating a World class team, through a Motivational Masterclass, delivered by Paul Browning, owner and Founder of Stuart and Franks G.Y.M (Grow Your Mind).
Paul explained that, in terms of project delivery, the performance gap or knowing/doing gap is evident everywhere we look. The reality is that individuals within projects and project teams know what to do, but there are tangible personal constraints and limitations which prevent them from actually implementing this knowledge to enable the delivery of the project. This can be said of many project teams where there are groups of highly qualified individuals. The team's beliefs and behaviours can be regularly mis-aligned to the time, cost and quality of the project delivery objectives.
So what can the project manager do today to bridge that performance gap tomorrow and what inspirational tools are needed to ensure that their team can rapidly adapt to and foresee change?
Well, using the Stuart and Frank professional comparison model, Paul went on to illustrate the 5 secrets for creating a world class team, where the Stuarts of this world set their goals and understand that everything that happens to them is a direct result of their own efforts and thoughts. They rely on nobody to give them a break or a chance; instead they create situations that provide their own opportunities for success. Whereas the Franks of this world are very much the lazy and unambitious project managers who just do the bare minimum to get by.
Against the backdrop of the Stuart and Frank props, Paul explained that:
1) Conditioning is a fundamental component that can dictate and constrain human emotions and behaviours that would otherwise provide creativity and inspiration in support of project delivery. This is an important factor when it comes to conceptual or developmental needs within the project lifecycle.
2) Furthermore, individual and collective attitude was explained as something that controls everything we do (actions) however, it can depend on individual perception based on their role within the business. How often do we see a marked difference in attitude when comparing senior management to desk-level personnel? Importantly, Stuart has the right positive attitude so is more likely to be action orientated and consequently have a significantly higher chance of success, while Frank has a particularly poor attitude!
3) Another important message is that project managers, leaders and decision-makers need to have a clear Vision of the end-state. Without that vision it is almost impossible to describe the business objectives sufficiently well for others to fully understand them and join you on your journey to success. Stuart has a great picture of the future and explains it to his team regularly!
4) Paul went on to explain that in order to attain success, two minds must think alike (i.e. there is a balance between the conscious and sub-conscious minds). There must be a degree of control between the thinking mind and the emotional mind so that positive action and minimum negative thoughts are the natural outcomes when supporting and managing projects and project teams.
5) Finally, Paul described the path to achieving the results that we really want in our professional positions. This means that we must choose the right thoughts, enable the right feelings, take the right actions which produce the right motivations and results for true project success through world-class teams.
All of this is a bit difficult to capture so briefly, however in summary, Paul provided a thoroughly informative and thought-provoking presentation that certainly made the audience think about how both individual and team performance may be improved through better attitudes, better recognition and handling of emotion and allowing individuals to understand the need for change and how they can contribute to its success.
Paul works across a diverse selection of organisations including education, the prison service, the DWP, SMEs and multi-national corporations and is now a world-class author, personal and corporate coach and professional speaker who has devoted his life to studying human behaviour and helping individuals, teams and businesses to achieve their true potential.