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Nigel Risner shares his ten keys to high performing teams

1. Make sure you have the right people in the right jobs
Recruit on personality and values more than skills and experience. Unless you are recruiting brain surgeons or airline pilots, in most jobs the cost of training someone is far less than the cost of employing someone who isn’t a fit.

2. Crystal clarity on responsibilities and what is expected
There’s a big difference between having a job description and having crystal clarity in your own head about what is expected of you and what you are ultimately responsible for.

3. Align personal goals with organisational goals
Peoples’ personal goals are much more motivating to them than the organisation’s goals. Leaders who make the effort to discover what those personal goals are – and then find ways to align them with the organisation’s goals – can expect much greater engagement.

4. Personal warm relationships
You are much more likely to work hard and go the extra mile for people you care about. You are much more likely to let down people you don’t care about.

5. Catching people doing things right
When the focus is on avoiding being caught doing something wrong, performance tends to stabilise at a minimum acceptable level. This is usually a fraction of what people are capable of. Research shows that when you recognise good behaviour at least four times as much as poor behaviour, performance shifts gear and can go through the roof.

6. Daily feedback/accountability conversations
We are hard-wired to work towards goals and we want to know how we are tracking towards those goals. All the research on performance shows that the more instant the feedback the more motivated we are.

7. Value individuality, diversity, unique gifts
We are each one-of-a-kind unique individuals who think differently, yet in many workplaces we feel we have to leave our individuality at home and conform. Embracing diversity and individuality encourages people to bring more of themselves to work. It encourages creativity and higher engagement.

8. Constructive (not destructive) handling of conflict
Conflict is inevitable and can be a source of growth and creativity. But when people don’t know how to handle conflict constructively it can lead to toxic mistrust and people feeling unsafe, judged and bullied – all of which kills motivation.

9. Conducive working environment
The interaction between the environment and the subconscious is powerful. Different spaces and colours are conducive to different tasks, such as focused concentration, creativity, analysis, meetings etc.

10. READ POINTS 1 -9 except this time implement them not just read them.


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