“You’ve talked about this before, but I want to make sure I understand it. We need to get 30 units out of this team every day, 15 in the morning and 15 in the afternoon. Right now, if they don’t make it, as their Manager, I get pissed. If it happens two days in a row, double-pissed,” Vicki stated flatly.
“And if that’s the way you see it, then, your system will create behaviors that don’t help,” I replied. “Thirty units a day is your goal. You are responsible for the results from your team. If I hold your team accountable for doing their best and I hold you, as their Manager, accountable for the results, what changes?”
“But what if they show up late for work, or take too many breaks, or slow walk the line? That’s not my fault. If they do that and I don’t reach my goal, how is that my fault?”
“You are still fighting it,” I responded. “If I hold you, as the Manager, accountable for the results of your team, what changes?”
Vicki was stumped. She drew a deep breath. “If you are going to hold me accountable, then I have to make sure my team all shows up for work. I have eight people and with all the cutbacks, it takes full effort to reach my goal.”
“And, what if, one day, your most valuable team member is out sick, truly sick, and I hold you accountable for the results from your team?”
“But if someone gets sick, it’s not my fault!”
“It is not your fault that someone got sick, but I will still hold you accountable for the results from the team. What has to change?”