IT in itself is a different beast. Most members of the IT department cannot cross function like many jobs can. For instance Ruben could not do the job that Choc does because he is a specialist. Due to this, if one person is lost it could cost the company in time and production. You have basically put all of your eggs in one basket and once that breaks you have nothing left. How do create an environment where if one person goes you can quickly fill the position? In this technological age, we find more specialists are broadening their scope as it makes them more marketable.
VIC first needs to assess their current roof. As Barton used the white board, you list all employees by function and groups. As you begin to see who can cross function and who is just a specialist, you see your bottle neck right away. You look at the overlaps and then the ones you feel comfortable with take out of the equation. Now that you have a clear view of the skills your team has, try to figure out who could produce more talent in other areas. Ivan, who is brilliant in coding, is also in architect. So now VIC should find jobs for him to do in both areas.
Choc is a network specialist, would he be willing to go to school and take on another epically? If they try to cross train their people, they would not just be relying on one person. Companies, especially dealing with IT, should have a few people in the wings incase suddenly an employee leaves. There should be a network created where VIC can make a phone call incase this situation happens to people who may not be on their payroll but can assist them for a day or two while they figure out what they re going to do. Many companies have these people in place and VIC needs to jump on board.
The whole other side of this is that if one person is becoming burnt out this is tot good for the company or themselves. The work they will do will not be up to par. Here we look at the number of hours worked vs.. The value of hours worked. Specialists can do their job in minutes compared to those of us who just know a little bit which could take us hours to do the same thing. We cannot punish a person for doing an amazing job in half the time it would take someone else. From working with IT specialists, you see that they can accomplish their tasks quickly and efficiently.
But, you do not want to allow an employee to push the envelope because they know they are the only ones who can do the job. There needs to be a plan established that will allow for Ivy’s employees to have a brain break but as well have their work done in a timely fashion. It should never be all work and no play; major Fortune 500 companies have already proved this does not work. But companies have deadlines and they need to be met. Having a plan in writing that states that each employee is to be able to take breaks when needed under no supervision but must produce on time a complete task is the right way to approach this situation.
These employees do not need to be micromanaged or on a time schedule, they need freedom to produce. What they need are guide lines so things do not get out of hand. This is the creative side. Employees do not work well under the autocratic boss who expects them to do things at this time every day. Barton, exactly the opposite has allowed them their freedom but he came into this job with positions set and rules he did not make or lack thereof. It’s basically a free for all at this point which he needs to change. No rules is never good, too many beats a person down.
Finding a natural balance will allow these IT employees to enjoy their jobs and want to produce great results because they take pride n their work. No one in IT just happened to end up there. None of us could just walk into an IT department and start working. We do not have the skills needed to do so. People in IT are passionate about the job. It takes a certain person to do it and it can be extremely exhausting and strenuous. Opening the communication barriers helps to keep people happy. Excellent communication amongst employees is the most effective way to produce results.
The Fifth Discipline describes how there is discussion and dialogue and what the difference is. This is part of the Team Learning discipline. This discipline begins with “dialogue” which is the capacity of members of a team to suspend assumptions and enter into a genuine “thinking together. ” This should be a free flowing meaningful conversation through members allowing the group to discover insights not attainable individually. There is no competition. Discussions can be competitive, hurtful, persuasive and get a team nowhere (Sense, 2006).
Here you have many different personalities discussing issues and people don’t know what the other is talking about. When Barton was head of loan ops, IT would explain projects that needed to be funded and he would Gerard them or actually make fun of them because he didn’t understand what Davies was saying. Here you have Davies, not a great manager because he is not expressing his ideas in a way that a common person would understand and Barton who is not hearing a word he is saying because he is ignorant to IT.
If both people had better communication, than the issue would be solved and the project would have been funded and the system may not have gone down. You can’t imagine how many times in business communications are lost and terrible things happen. If we worked as the book states, collectively the group will ask questions instead of having assumptions; they would genuinely care about the departments issues and try to understand the problem and work effectively to come up with a proper solution. This could take minutes, hours or days but it would all be worth it so everyone is on the same page.
One thing that was on the right path Was creating an environment where all of the different segments in IT were linked together. By allowing everyone to know each other’s major projects and tasks, it may bring some team members out of their shell. Each employee may have a hidden talent that could be executed if they knew they could be helpful in a project. We believe cost people want to help, but if they are never asked to, they just become comfortable doing their day to day routine. If you put a project in front of them and say “have at it” you would be amazed at who jumps in and what kind of quality they bring.
Now you can go back to the white board and maybe add a few more names to who can cross function. Learning people’s attitudes and the way they function is key for communication as well. Butcher Consulting Group spoke to us about the 4 ways to identify a person’s communication style. Trust is the beginning and major factor of communication. Then you start to learn how a person, moves, heir style of dress, the way they talk, eye movement, body posture, appearance, voice pitch, facial expressions and how they react in certain environments.