Are your teams working in a silo culture? And is that going to give your business the strength to be a winner, as we come out of the COVID-19 crisis?
There’s an old saying: Leaders are like tea bags, you only know their strength when in hot water!
Many businesses, given the current circumstances, are in hot water. Sadly, for some leaders, the COVID ‘heat’ has been too much and the plug has been pulled. But for many others there is still hope to enjoy success,
The Cost Of Working In A Silo Culture
A while back when working with a client, I ran a simulation using some ropes where participants were paired up. Every pair in this executive team had the same problem to solve.
For over 20 minutes they all struggled with the same problem and not one pair teamed up with another to share the challenge and collaboratively work it out. In fact, one pair ‘gave up’ without consulting others.
At the same time, the biggest shock was that one pair achieved the solution but didn’t ask for guidance (and they didn’t offer to help either!). This was typical as what was happening in their business. Silos, gossip and a resulting big hit on business results.
As you would expect, the debrief was both enlightening and soul searching.
This is not that different from many businesses hey?
Daring To Break Down Silos
Egos play a big part in creating silos. We either want to look good – “our department is much better than yours” or we are too proud to ask others when the chips are down, even at the cost of errors and rework.
As Brené Brown says in her recent book, “Dare to Lead: Brave Work. Tough Conversations. Whole Hearts”, the greatest leaders are those who show the greatest vulnerability. Such leaders don’t mind calling out behaviours undermining success. Particularly when they have recognised they are one of the culprits building a culture of silos.
Brené uses the terminology ‘Daring Leadership’ to define leads that smash the silo virus:
In her terms, ‘Daring Leadership’ has a foundation based on 4 teachable skill sets:
- Rumbling with vulnerability – We are willing to admit that we don’t have the answers to all problems that arise. By showing a genuine curiosity and asking good questions, solutions begin to appear.
- Living into our values – I have worked with so many organisations that have a neat set of values. And they gather dust. The biggest challenge is ‘how do we live these in our day to day’? Good leaders and business are regularly assessing behaviours (theirs and others) according to an agreed set of values
- Braving trust – The success of my own business comes back to the trust that was put on me by my mentor and business partner over 20 years ago. When you feel trusted, you feel empowered, you get the job done.
- Learning to rise – Leaders with attitude – those continually stepping out of their comfort zone tend to be innovators. They have the courage to call out actions and behaviours, put their ego to one side to benefit business.
Are you wanting to increase your effectiveness with others? To get them better engaged in decision making? And mentor others to step up and take action?
Are you ready to move from a silo culture to a success culture?
I’d love to help you turn your silos into sunsets, helping your team step up and rise above the ‘noise’ of mediocrity.
Give me a call and let’s have a chat.