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HCI Webinar: What to Do When Your Leaders Struggle to Perform, with Michael Teape

In the latest HCI Webinar, Dr. Jonathan H. Westover talks with Michael Teape about what to do when your leaders struggle to perform. Below is a summary of the main points from their conversation! Check out the full episode and let us know what you think!


Watch the episode here:


Overview


Jonathan and Michael discussed the importance of coaching and training within organizations, the significance of customized solutions, the value of leadership coaching in connecting employees with their work, and the goal of creating an engaged and focused work culture. They also touched upon the challenges faced by leaders in dealing with issues and doubts in a timely manner, the importance of gaining feedback from departing employees, the need for leaders to prioritize a mix of forward thinking, strategy, and day-to-day tasks, and the perils of constantly operating in crisis mode.


Leader Performance Struggles: Coaching & Training Importance


Jonathan and Michael discussed the issue of leader performance struggles, highlighting its importance and planning to delve deeper into the topic. Michael, with his extensive background in business and personal effectiveness, shared his expertise and emphasized the significance of coaching and training within organizations. They agreed that customized solutions are crucial and discussed the value of leadership coaching in connecting employees with their work. They also emphasized the goal of creating an engaged and focused work culture.


Impactful Leaders and Turnover Rates


Jonathan shared an anecdote about a tech company in Utah that was struggling with high turnover rates, which they attributed to a problematic mid-range executive. He emphasized the significant positive or negative impact a leader can have on a team and the organization. Michael responded by discussing the responsibility of leaders who should have noticed issues but didn't. Jonathan and Michael agreed on the importance of identifying and addressing problematic leaders to improve team dynamics and organizational performance.


Leadership Challenges in Addressing Issues


Michael and Jonathan discussed the challenges faced by leaders in dealing with issues and doubts in a timely manner. Michael emphasized that leaders often need multiple situations before feeling confident enough to address a problem. He also highlighted the caution that leaders exhibit, not wanting to upset the status quo, and the fear of being judged when bringing up ideas. In response, Michael suggested that organizations should establish mechanisms for feedback and allow teams time without their managers to express themselves. The conversation ended with Michael sharing his work on how managers receive effective challenges in a large financial institute in New York.


Feedback, Work Environment, and Leadership Strategy


Michael and Jonathan discussed the importance of gaining feedback from departing employees and implementing measures to improve the work environment. Michael emphasized the use of exploratory questions and comparisons with manager expectations. Jonathan noted the need for leaders to shift from constantly putting out fires to becoming more proactive and forward-looking. He suggested that leaders should prioritize a mix of forward thinking, strategy, and day-to-day tasks to prevent constant crisis mode. Both agreed that a leader's primary role should not be solely focused on firefighting, as this hinders productivity, innovation, and high performance.


Crisis Mode vs Strategic Thinking


Michael and Jonathan discussed the perils of constantly operating in crisis mode, noting how it can lead to a lack of strategic thinking and an overreliance on dopamine hits from problem-solving. They emphasized the importance of finding a balance between responding to urgent issues and focusing on long-term goals. Michael also highlighted the importance of psychological safety and scenario planning in creating a more adaptive and resilient team. The conversation ended with Michael sharing his contact details and encouraging leaders to take a step back and assess their situation to better manage their stress levels.


Work and Collaboration Discussion


Michael and Jonathan had a discussion about their work and the possibility of collaborating. Jonathan encouraged the audience to connect with Michael and his team for any assistance they might need. The two also planned to collaborate on a podcast that Jonathan will release soon. They agreed to share the podcast on various platforms and to interact with the audience by adding comments and creating clips. Finally, they wished each other a successful week and promised to keep in touch.


Listen to the webinar here:


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