09 Apr Mission Statement 2003: “Do More with Less and Do it Faster!”
Every company that hopes to survive in 2003 has an unambiguous mission statement: “Do more with less, and do it faster!”
But how? Funding and resources are strained to the limit, marketing is getting more like a snipe hunt, and (remaining) personnel are having to do the jobs of two to three people. Companies are already doing more with less; is it possible under these conditions to do anything faster—and better—and make the difficulties of 2003 an opportunity for competitive advantage?
Yes, it is. There are unrecognized resources in coworkers, and there is an available “human operating system” upgrade that can tap into specific improvements which:
Optimize communication and hand-offs on team projects;
Help coworkers problem-solve in faster and more comprehensive ways;
Customize marketing and customer contact to fit customers’ perception of value;
Manage market changes with the right blend of business planning and day-to-day agility.
This “human operating system” upgrade is a training that combines psychological type awareness with an historical baseline of best practices. Combining psychometric and biographical approaches, one coworker can link with another who has exactly what they need for faster and better output.
First, psychological type preferences. Many companies have had some training in this time-tested way to measure positive style differences. What most companies have NOT done is utilize this training to specifically improve work processes. The assessment used in this training is the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator, a reasonably-priced, easily-learned method for linking coworkers synergistically. The dimensions of the Indicator target synergistic performance improvement in four areas:
Extraversion/Introversion: where a person directs attention has specific effects on whether they prefer face-to-face or remote teamwork, how they pace change and hand-offs, and how they help themselves and others stay resilient under pressure;
Sensing/Intuition: whether a person pays attention to specific facts or meaningful patterns/overviews has much to do with effective problem-solving. Team members who are opposite on Sensing and Intuition help each other spot unseen aspects of problems, and then help each other get unstuck, as when a Sensing person has to develop an innovation, or an Intuitive needs the first practical step in a new design;
Thinking/Feeling: how customers make decisions, whether impersonally/analytically (Thinking) or personally/empathetically (Feeling) has everything to do with their purchasing a product/service. Each type makes up about 50% of the U.S. population. Thinking type customers want to see the features and advantages of a product, and they decide independently; Feeling types need to trust that a company “walks the talk” of customer service, and thus decide interpersonally. Coworkers of opposite types can thus help support targeted product presentation that fits customer psychographics as well as demographics;
Judging/Perceiving: a person’s approach to work, whether through planning and organization (Judging) or adapting and optimization (Perceiving), provides only one-half of the resources needed in any change process. A Judging coworker benefits from the relevance, realism, and troubleshooting of the Perceiving type in approaching new markets; the Perceiving type depends on the business planning, positive conservation, and goal-directedness of the Judging type for consistent deliverables, even as conditions change rapidly. Both types need each other; if they work synergistically, like the mast (Judging) and the sail (Perceiving) of a sailboat, a company can profitably navigate the troubled waters of 2003.
In addition to psychological types, coworkers learn to share a baseline of “personal best” practices with each other, which allows team members to specifically support each other according to what has consistently optimized performance in the past. This can be set into place within a single meeting of the team.
A company’s human resources, often stretched to the breaking point in today’s “Do-More-with-Less-and-Do-it-Faster” culture, can actually find new reserves and synergies through a “human operating systems” upgrade.
Richard D. Grant, Jr. PhD is a consulting psychologist in Austin, TX. His clients have included IBM, Motoralla, Sematech, Gartner Group, and a variety of technical and governmental clients. In 1993, he received the first “Innovations in Trainingand Education” award from the International Association for Psychological Type. Contact information for Dr. Grant can be found here.