Monitoring and Motivation - Two Critical Pillars for Team Building

Few years into the business, I realized that the top line was growing, but the bottom line was taking a hit, not to mention customer complaints and employee attrition. That was when it dawned on me that the time had come for the next level of personal learning, which was very

learn more about Dr Shikha Sharma

By Dr Shikha Sharma • Jan 25, 2017

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Entrepreneurs are driven by passion: that for building and leading a team and taking a new business to newer heights. No true entrepreneur wants to lead a team based on mediocrity and moderation. This is because such a team would be a reflection on nothing but the leadership. Having said this, it requires much persistence and constant personal and professional development to make and lead that perfect team.

When I became an entrepreneur, I focused on what I then thought was the most critical aspect of a business: finding the need gap in the market, devising a solution for the gap, and then recognizing the customer base. Once these aspects are identified, one can say, the business is on! Few years into the business, I realized that the top line was growing, but the bottom line was taking a hit, not to mention customer complaints and employee attrition. That was when it dawned on me that the time had come for the next level of personal learning, which was very valuable, although it came after many trials and tribulations. I understood that two things were critical to managing teams of any size: Monitoring and Motivation.

Monitoring

Life before becoming an entrepreneur was all about being used to working alone and self-management. This meant making plans and executing them quickly, and if required, making all the course corrections efficiently, saving time and effort. In business, once I formed a team, I realized that working alone and working in coordination with a team were two totally different things. The major difference being that when one is working as a team, it is extremely important to follow up after the initial set of instructions are given.

The fundamental advantages that regular and efficient monitoring bring about are many. For example, with monitoring, a founder can quickly discover any challenge that the team may be facing in understanding or implementing a task. They also are able to figure out whether the right person has been delegated for the right task. Finally, monitoring brings about a basic work culture and discipline in the team, sets the right expectations, and also brings transparency in outcomes.

Depending on hierarchy, monitoring can be in hours or maximum one week, but never more than that. This is because after this period, the work tempo is completely lost. For example, in most sales contact centres, the monitoring is done with the help of live screens displaying incoming and outgoing calls and calling effort reports are seen every hour. In the case of other departments, weekly reviews are scheduled on pre-designed data reporting formats. Apart from this, surprise audits are conducted to see the outliers.

Motivation

In an intensively monitored environment, the team may take time to adjust to the high pace work culture. Along with this, in majority of the cases, supervisors need a lot of training and mentoring on how to manage the juniors or reportees under them. However unacceptable, it is a fact that yelling, intimidation, or humiliating the juniors / reportees in front of the peers or publically by the senior staff is prevalent in many companies. Such a work culture can prove to be very de-motivating for juniors and they tend to feel alienated. This then shows up as poor performance and very high levels of stress in the work environment. The end result as we all know is poor revenues and very low overall company performance.

Motivation is not only about providing incentives or bonus. These, in my opinion, after a point seem more like bribing used by a lazy top management rather than a genuine appreciation of the performer. Real motivation comes from some good company practices like having people development programmes, motivational sessions using audio and videos of top speakers, etc. Other examples include the following

Applauding innovation and creativity in a structured fashion

Setting up Mentor–Mentee programmes within the company. This will enable those capable in assisting in the development of others. This will also build a culture of learning and growing with the company values.

Last but not the least, a very transparent performance matrix, which is more objective (driven by measurable numbers) rather than subjective (people's perceptions) can help build a high performance company.

Dr Shikha Sharma

Founder, Dr Shikha’s NutriHealth

Dr Shikha Sharma is the founder of Dr Shikha’s Nutri Health, which is a platform offering comprehensive health and diet management programmes. A medical doctor by training, Dr Shikha hails from Kashmir and completed her MBBS from Maulana Azad Medical College, New Delhi.

It was while working as a Junior Doctor in Cardiology that she realized that most of the patients in the ICU have no idea about the root cause of their heart problem. They were also likely to relapse into unhealthy eating after treatment. This prompted her to set up Nutri Health, which is a professional and scientific preventive healthcare system. The organization has ayurvedic doctors and nutritionists who run various programmes for individuals.

Dr Shikha pioneered the concept of Nutrigenetics, which combines modern medicine techniques and the principles of Ayurveda. She has advised many celebrities, hoteliers, and Chief Ministers of Indian states, one Ex-Prime Minister among others, on diet and health management. With the proven concept of Nutrigenetics, she decided to help the masses and shifted her focus from working single handedly to having a group of intellectuals.  

Dr. Shikha is quoted frequently by many leading publications. A well-known face on television channels, Dr Shikha is also frequently invited to give talks.

Dr Shikha is the recipient of many awards and honors for her work and achievements. She was awarded the Women Achiever Award by FICCI and the Gr8 Indian Women Award.  An alumnus of Modern School, she was given the Hall of Fame Award by her school. She is also the recipient of the Women Achiever Award by the Bharat Nirman Society. For her service in preventive healthcare, Dr Shikha received an award by the former Union Health Minister of India, Mr Ghulam Nabi Azad. Rashmi Bansal has also written about Dr Shikha in her book ‘Follow Every Rainbow’, a book on entrepreneurship.

India Today listed Dr Shikha as one of the Top 50 Young Achievers of the Country in one of their articles. She is also a recipient of the Aspen Global Leaders Fellowship (India Batch 3), which is awarded in Aspen, Colorado, USA. She is a fellow of the BMW young leaders, a non-profit foundation run by the German car company, BMW. Dr Shikha also served as the National Health Chair for Young Indians, a subsidiary of the CII.

 

 

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