Chris, a training executive for a large, multinational firm, gathered his
team at an offsite retreat to refocus their priorities for the next six
months. Chris’ management team consisted of veteran training pro-fessionals
with a wealth of experience. But Chris had also recruited
two new players, Sara and Angela – both were experienced sales leaders but
novices in the employee-training arena.
Each member of the management team was asked to craft a “challenge
question” – a concrete objective that would focus the team’s energy on quick,
sustainable wins – and then share it with the group. The veterans went first.
Carina began by explaining that she ignored Chris’ list of priorities and came
up with her own. Greg laid out an ambitious challenge – one that sound-ed
lofty but offered no starting points. Carlos articulated a challenge to
introduce a new online program. When asked how he would engage the ex-ecutives
inside the company, Carlos brushed it off, declaring, “I’ve learned to
keep the executives out of things. I usually just ask for their opinion on issues
that don’t really matter. I know what needs to be done.” Each of these veter-ans
missed the mark by relying on their own expertise.
HRPATODAY.CA ❚ OCTOBER 2014 ❚ 27