All entries for Sunday 21 October 2012

October 21, 2012

Teamwork and Achievement

I firmly believe in trust, truth and outstanding teamwork; sharing mistakes and celebrating success. Life has taught me that you get the best out of others provided you give the best out of yourself. Essentially, teamwork is always important, whether it is concerned in our personal or professional lives. It is at times mildly and at other times significantly incorporated into everything we do in our lives. On any scale and at any front, teamwork is cardinal as all parts and entities work collabaratively to achieve the common objective. The group assignments that we have been working on over the last couple of weeks have definitely strengthened our team working skills. Ranging from preparing and delivering seminars and presentations to writing reports, team working skills have been constantly reinforced. It is absolutely vital to understand that these skills and competencies are essentially imperative for the competitive professional workplace.

I strongly believe that achievement and performance, when recognised and rewarded, lead to motivation, which, therefore, results in greater achievement. Motivation is intrinsically related to happiness and success, which are the determinants of higher performance. This is also implied by Frederick Herzberg's theory of motivation, as discussed in the last seminar.

Performance Management

The continual process of aiming to improve organisational performance through the continuous improvement of the employees is referred as Performance Management. Performance Management is increasingly important for both the business and the individuals. It aims to improve business performance through focusing on objective setting, performance discussions, and working towards a high performance work culture. Intrinsically, it promotes the idea of teamwork and perseverance, specifically in relation to consistency of approach to people and of talent data. It also facilitates the internal structure of an organisation in reference to its objectives. As far as the individuals are concerned, it again focuses on objective settings, and on personal self assessment and personal development. Furthermore, it enables training identification, and the need for accuracy and perseverance in achieving business goals. Through the reflective personal self assessment, it aims to deliver fairness and objectivity related to performance.

There are several benefits of Performance Reviews for the appraisee and the appraiser. As far as the appraisee is concerned, they provide a clarity of agenda and purpose, i.e. the job role and expectations. Feedback on performance is also given, which is helpful if taken constructively. This can result in an increase in job satisfaction and motivation - which I believe is directly proportional to increased performance. Performance Reviews also provide clarity in terms of future direction by giving an opportunity to discuss job enrichment and career progression. They are especially helpful in identifying the need for training and support. For the appraiser, they provide a greater knowledge and understanding of individual's strengths and weaknesses, and the opportunity to identify competency, development and training needs.

The last two weeks have been consistently promoting these key concepts and instilling the necessary knowledge and understanding in us through the various topics, such as The EFQM Excellence Model, Deming's Principles, Organizational Learning, High Performance Work Systems and Motivation at Work. I believe that this process of continual learning and improvement will not only benefit us in the short term, as far as this course is concerned, but remain with us as lifelong learning.

Creating Business Excellence

Our first module, ‘Creating Business Excellence,’ went beyond just teaching us the foundations of creating business excellence. It provided us with the opportunity to exercise business acumen, leadership abilities, and team-work skills through role plays, presentations, reports, seminars and group discussions – ensuring we have the fundamental ingredients to strive for excellence on this module, course and beyond. I believe that this has invoked confidence within us, and amongst our team members. It has also provided a sense of trust, performance, and cohesion. Working in an approachable, actionable and harmonious environment is always beneficial.

It is substantial to reiterate that it is both the fundamental organisational principles on which the practise of business management is based, and the competency to amalgamate it with the art of enterprise leadership and employment relations that are crucial for survival and success in the increasingly competitive global corporate environment. Reinforcing this understanding has been the core objective of ‘Creating Business Excellence’.

Flexible Working

It is integral to have a strong work ethic, and embed it as a key feature into our working style. However, it is increasingly imperative to understand and ensure that this work ethic needs to be balanced with a certain extent of flexibility in individual working arrangements to enable us to deliver our best to people and get the best from them.

On an ad hoc basis, we already make judgements about dealing with different individuals and situations within a team. Therefore, having a degree of flexibility in our working environment is fundamental for success. Albeit, unfortunately, there will be some situations in which it would be difficult to reach a certain degree of flexible working, it is important to assure that we are able to accommodate special requests where normal arrangements are disrupted in order to make the best out of the given situation.

Presentations: A Continual Learning Process

Taking part in several presentations this week has certainly given me a lot of confidence. Additionally, as Paul told us last week, there are going to be numerous presentations in the year ahead. I am confident that this is the year in which we will learn.

I suppose the most essential thing when speaking is the confidence that you develop in front of your colleagues and peers. We all come from different parts of the world; having different cultures, languages, and accents. Ultimately, what matters is the confidence and poise with which we deliver and put forth our opinions across the audience. Of course, confidence does not come naturally to everybody. However, the more we speak in public, the better we get in the time to come.

Presentations held on Friday certainly got overshadowed by the ones held earlier on Tuesday. We relied too much on the definitions and did not pay much heed to the audience. It was an ‘undergrad level’ because we did not concentrate much on the structure and eventually lost the focus.

Confidence, audible voice, credible sources, effective speech and stance, proper structure, and sound content are perhaps the most important aspects we need to consider and learn this year!

October 2012

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