In the ten years since starting my business, I did something last Friday that I have never done before.
I invited a variety of clients to come together and talk with each other about their experiences using the Profiles assessment tools.
The way I looked at it, those people “in the trenches,” doing the work, could offer the best ideas to share with others. I have lots of suggestions and examples that I give my clients, but I had an instinct that this type of collaborative discussion would have more impact.
The dynamics at the meeting confirmed that impression. Despite icy road conditions that morning, we enjoyed 100% attendance. After sharing ideas for almost two hours, I asked if they wanted a coffee break, but heads shook no and we carried on. At noon when we ended, everyone stayed to enjoy lunch together for more sharing of ideas.
Feedback after the session voiced appreciation for how open everyone had been. Each of the clients came into the meeting with varying levels of experience, from veterans who I have worked with for about eight years, to others who have started within the last year. Yet, everyone walked away thinking about something in a new, different way.
My goal was to discover ways for these clients to get more out of their investment. Each of them has a deep desire for a quality workplace environment and an exceptional experience for their customers. With that commitment to employees and customers, I wanted to help them accomplish those objectives.
These companies have witnessed the value of the assessments and we have significant success stories already under our belt. But why stop there? Why not forge into new territory and see if we can do more with what is already around us?
I learned from this experience, too. As I was planning it, I worried if everyone would find value. I worried if they would bring up problems I wouldn’t have the answer to. I worried whether the organizations would be so different that the ideas wouldn’t be useful. But I shouldn’t have worried at all.
I brought talented people together who wanted to learn. When that happens, the answers will come.
Meanwhile, Grace was enjoying a lazy morning at home. She was with us in spirit, knowing the right people were at the right place.
You don’t have to include everyone on your team for every meeting. But you should make a conscious effort to bring those together that have a common goal, even when things are going just fine. Everyone benefits when that happens.