Clear the organisational fog: performance coaching through sailing
In a world, where competition has become increasingly intense, the pace of change faster and where teams are often based on looser, transactional and more distant interactions, alignment and integration play an ever more important role in clearing the organisational fog and ensuring objectives can be met.
Understanding what drives value and being able to translate it into quality decisions, based on trade-offs between cost, risks and quality may well make you competitive, it is only half the story.
To realise that value also requires the alignment of the team, if one wants to avoid that biases, assumptions, misunderstandings, mistrust and self-interest destroy the benefit of having robust management processes.
Team alignment however is often overlooked or mistaken with the traditional yearly teambuilding activity and regular afterwork drinks.
The kind of integration which will have a significant impact on a team’s performance is based on a sound understanding of its inside dynamics, its diversity and the perception it has of itself, with respect to its objectives.
Only when such a picture is understood, can the alignment journey start. A lot of organisations though leave it to individuals in the team to work things out from this point onward, which often means that, despite good intentions, little seems to change on the ground in the end. Opportunity lost. Performance issues and frustrations remain.
To turn good intentions into performance and team self-esteem improvement requires to create a tangible and powerful experience, built around the identified alignment gaps.
Sailing combines all the ingredients for such a transforming experience:
*it’s an immersion into an unfamiliar environment: you can’t rely on your experience to guide your actions, unduly impose your will or your authority upon others, because everybody on board operates at the same level
*success depends on planning and good decisions: you have to think ahead, be critical about what you know (and be open about what you don’t know) and be receptive to others’ ideas
*things change all the time: you have to be open to change (you have no choice anyway) and to changing your mind or earlier decisions, in view of what happens around you
*we’re all in this together: sailing is the epitome of teamwork, good crews handle clear communication, trust each other and put the team first
*team bonding goes on long after you’ve gone back ashore: just ask any sailor about the after race drinks and the relationships they grow through the races
Sailing is an integration accelerator breaking walls and prejudices faster and more efficiently than any other “team building” event.
ALL4ONE consulting works on team alignment in collaboration with professional skippers, who bring their experience of human performance in the big ocean races. We perform the initial team assessment and identify alignment gaps, work with you to close them during a sailing project and build on its momentum to sustainably anchor the learnings in your organisation afterwards.
Picture credits: © Britannia Corporate Events Ltd