Reflection after a long assignment as leader of a team20 février 2023
Who once said to never look back?
I just closed a long ad interim assignment with a client and yes, I think it’s a great moment to have a look in the rear mirror.
I started my assignment before the Covid crisis. In these times, we were 100% on-site among our teams. Yes, people could work remotely but that no-one really wanted to. When starting an assignment, my first and only focus goes on people. Who are they? What’s the story behind those faces who I just met? To understand what’s going on with a team, I first need to understand who are the team members. Then comes the “What-they-do”, how they do it, and why they do it.
Some people may think that being a team manager in ad interim is not easy to build trust. My experience is that my team was quite open and happy to talk and share their experience. For a large part of the team, a blank page was offered to them to construct a new relationship with their manager. But for some of them, it wasn’t so easy. A few of the team members needed more time to adapt. Change takes time and patience. That's why, at first, it was necessary for me to introduce some small improvements in the working methods that would allow the team to gain flexibility and efficiency. These quick wins were accepted and integrated and allowed the team to see their results improve rapidly. The team’s good performances have created a new team dynamic. “To me, you are a breath of fresh air,” said a team member.
As you can imagine, not everything is smooth is the challenging word of customer service. I had to face a few challenges: Customer care reorganization (a completely new customer segmentation), going from on-site to remote management (Thanks to Covid Crisis), Market changes (which implies new systems, IT issues, massive training sessions, backlog…). My added value: my professional experience in customer service and my expertise as a professional people coach, keeping as much as I can on things that are in my circle of influence. This means supporting my team and making sure the team members keep track of what’s important for them to feel confident they add value for their customers.
The best example is the lockdown. We went from seeing each other to being left alone in front of a computer. Customers were frustrated, my team members were frustrated and I was frustrated. But we had to cope because we had no control over the situation. We could have shared complaints all day long. Instead of this, we set up some kind of “breakfast club”, a daily meeting to share concerns and coffee. I added additional one-on-one meetings, shorter than usual. We kept our meeting to talk about performance and Customer Satisfaction reports. Team members could see that, despite the lockdown, we were good and kept a high NPS Score.
As a team manager, I am grateful for this long assignment. It was indeed complex but
I could learn as much as I could give. I love what I do because it’s a two-way stream. I bring my energy, and my experience and I gain more energy and experience from the amazing people I meet.
Que peut faire Team2lead pour vous ?
Votre entreprise est à la recherche d'un manager expérimenté en contact avec la clientèle pour faire face à une réorganisation ? Vous souhaitez former votre équipe de direction aux compétences humaines et au leadership ? Asseyons-nous et voyons ce que team2lead peut faire pour vous.