Tuesday, 12 March 2013

Transforming Ordinary to Wow

Some while back a book written by Laurence J. Peter and Raymond Hull called The Peter Principle: Why Things Always Go Wrong was unleashed on corporate readers. Our understanding of organisations will never be the same.

Why? Because from it we learnt that “in an organisation where promotion is based on achievement, success, and merit, that organisation's members will eventually be promoted beyond their level of ability”.

In a previous posting we learnt the sad fates of Mary Mesquita and Marco Pimentel: two very typical examples of excellent operators who, in light of outstanding performances, had been promoted into positions which they were not able to fill. Both incidents resulted in substantial losses to their respective employer organisations in money, human capital and market. In each case it was clear that both individuals were more than competent in their technical skills. 

This realisation enables us to develop the tools needed to start the process of  bringing our team from ordinary to Wow.

We have recognised that there are a number of different areas in which people need to become competent.

I suggest that these would be the most practical to work with:
  •     Technical
  •     Soft skills (otherwise known as Emotional Intelligence)
  •     Management
  •     Company in house policies, processes

It also makes sense  to recognise that each function in the organisation will require people to be competent at different levels, like this:
  •      Aware: I know that these things are done but I’m not sure why or how
  •      Basic: I carry out routine functions that involve these skills
  •      Operational: I am very proficient in this area: only need assistance with advanced stuff
  •      Expert: I carry out work at an advanced level in this field and also teach others in it

The two elements, areas of competency and levels of complexity, can be made in to a matrix:

Soft Skills
Company in house




So where is this leading?

In following posts we will find out how to develop  this matrix into a map of all the competencies needed by the organisation at each level.

Having done that we will describe each function within the organisation in terms of both the competencies required and the levels at which they are needed for that function.

Then we show how to use that information to find out what training each person in our organisation actually needs – this can be quite traumatic, so please tighten the seatbelts!