One of the professional hockey teams that I follow closely have had consistency issues all year. It is hard to believe that they are still struggling considering they were awarded the #1 draft pick three years in a row!
It has become increasingly clear over the last while that there is one glaring issue that plagues the team. They have too many of the same players. The team is one-dimensional. The skilled players are very talented but are too small and don’t have grit. At least some players need to possess all of those characteristics.
This situation got me thinking about sales teams and corporations in general.
How effective is a sales team if there are too many hunters or farmers, or perhaps too many quiet reps or outspoken ones?
A good mix of players is an integral part to a healthy, vibrant team. The team needs to feed off each other’s strengths and support each other while improving their weaknesses.
What about for a corporation in general?
If the sales department is performing well, but manufacturing and accounting are a mess (as an example), there will still be struggles overall. If manufacturing is firing on all cylinders, but everything else is having issues, the company is still “broken”.
I have always been a huge proponent of “temporary job trading”.
Do the role of somebody in a different department for even a day to get a better understanding of what it takes to perform their job. Maybe you won’t get so annoyed with them, and have a new appreciation for what they actual do!
Work to cross-train employees so they aren’t so one-dimensional. There will be a greater chance of mutual respect within the team if they have a true understanding of what everyone else is doing each day.
Sports teams, sales teams, and companies as a whole thrive when everyone is working together. Diversity within a team is healthy, and understanding what everyone’s roles are reduces tension within the group.
Think back to the controversies that are often made public when certain superstar players don’t make an olympic or other highly competitive teams. On the surface it looks like a glaring omission. In reality it is a strategic move by the management team to put other role players in that position. A team cannot be made up of only superstars. It rarely works, and the odds are against from the get-go.