Get to know your team

Hola amigos! Sunday in Malaga! What about a coffee after a yummy lunch! Time for espresso!

We have been discussing here about introducing changes, inserting a new culture, improving our process, etc.

Historically there is a need in knowing a team for leading reasons. This is what I call "hierarchical information." So you can lead your team better because you understand their needs, their skills and the areas they need to improve. You lead their needs.
See this article:

Traditionally, this is line-management oriented method. So you could also be able to be honest and sincere when reporting your guys performance year reviews.

Is this a match in Agile teams? What we really need is our team knowing the own team. And we need to reinforce mechanisms so everybody can understand everybody's circumstances, hobbies, likes, dislikes, provide an atmosphere full of trust or anything that can make the team to better coexist. This is on what a good manager or a Scrum Master have to be on top. And maybe we could say. "Well, there is a fair point in realizing that the manager's point of view would be more accurate when reporting appraisals." But are we certain that this still be 100% fair and the only good reason to do it like this ? 360-degree feedback is filling that gap. Who will be more valid in terms of impartiality, your peers or your lead? Both, maybe.

It is vital to be able facilitate this interaction. This needs to happen. Examples like promoting team building activities, team lunches or just playing a game. It has to be also an open and a natural communication.

One simple example. On the left, this is the profile game. Taken from Portia's Tung "The Dream Team Nightmare"  and the picture is from the first session with the team I coached in Athens a month ago. This is a pretty basic example to quickly perceive who we are. You should draw a picture of yourself and address with few words what you love and what you hate at that precise moment. This exercise itself it is just a game. And playing games is good because they were laughing from the first place. We needed some support to play the game. Wasabi kit kat played the role.

We adapted it from the original version and they were presenting the partner on their left to the rest. I believe that it also helped to break down barriers. We had the impression that they have never had the chance to talk so open - and it was literally few things they loved and hated. It was just the kickoff to get to know your team. 

It's funny to see the results once you repeat the game a week after. Few profiles changed but not the wasabi kit kat :-)


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