The last few months of campaigning have been a long hard slog for Joe and Kamala. Now they face the challenge of putting their promises into action.
Their first step? To build their team.
They must build a team who will enable them to deliver on those promises. Of course, they will have a strong idea of who these people will be. But as any new hire manager will know, they will inherit an in-situ, established team formed by the current administration.
This can be hard enough for a new manager in an ordinary organisation. But it will be extra tough in an extraordinary (possibly even dysfunctional) organisation such as The White House, where the cultural difference in leadership style could not be more striking.
For new leaders, presidential or not, throwing the baby out with the bath water is not an option. Stability and a smooth transfer of authority are critical to success. Established teams hold such depth of knowledge and experience that a total clean slate is likely to be counter-productive. New and old staffers will need to find a way to get along. More than that, they will need to find a way to thrive together.
Team building in The White House and every workplace
Team building is not raft-making on a wet muddy riverbank. Neither is it a canape making masterclass (yes, that’s an actual thing). Those activities might be fun for some (hell for others) but they don’t really help teams to understand where they are strong, and where they might need extra support. This information is best gained from psychometrics designed for the workplace which provide clear actionable results.
This information is especially valuable when it is broken down into day-to-day and under pressure scenarios. Some people will excel day-to-day but stumble under pressure. For others the opposite will be true as they rise to the challenge when dealing with uncertainty but are less motivated when it’s all a bit humdrum. These insights are valuable for any manager, but even more so for a new incumbent.
Understanding each other’s strengths and behaving with emotional maturity are even more important where there is ideological and political difference. Particularly when the state of a nation depends on stability and harmony. Social awareness, emotional regulation and regard for others are crucial. We might have political differences with our colleagues, but we must always behave with respect and work productively. We’re not pretending that this is easy. However, it is possible as long as we are prepared to put the effort in and invest in training and coaching to develop these skills.
Survivors of a toxic workplace culture
From what we hear, The White House doesn’t appear to have been a great workplace over the last four years. High profile figures have come and gone, some very publically. That doesn’t usually make for a constructive workplace. The new administration will need to scoop up those who have been working under extreme pressure and get them back into a more healthy mindset.
Much as survivors of warzones are affected by their experiences, survivors of toxic workplace cultures will also exhibit changes to their preferred behaviour. Perhaps they have behaved more assertively than they would prefer because they have had to fight for their place. Or perhaps they have behaved less sociably for fear of being ridiculed.
Under a new regime, existing team members may feel justifiably wary as their workplace goes through sudden change. There may even be an element of Stockholm Syndrome. Better the devil you know? New leaders, Joe & Kamala included, will need to be savvy to this. However, if equipped with insightful information, they will build strong bridges to encourage behaviour that is healthy and sustainable for the long term.
Use flowprofiler® and McQuaig to develop a healthy workplace culture
Develop emotional intelligence, resilience, motivation and with flowprofiler® to help your people manage pressure and form strong team relationships at work. With a keen focus on positive psychology, flowprofiler® uniquely measures resilience, motivation and emotional intelligence across two states: day-to-day and under pressure. The result is rich diagnostic information, easy to understand feedback and meaningful professional development.
Understand how your people are behaving differently and what you can do to support them with McQuaig. The McQuaig tools measure the traits needed for success in any role. It looks at how a person prefers to behave naturally and compares this with how a person is behaving in their current job. The analysis between the two shows any adjustments the individual is making and whether they are showing signs of high or low morale.
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