Intrinsic-Extrinsic partnerships can be highly effective in problem solving situations. However, problems can arise which can lead to a failure of proper dialogue developing between the two. Where this becomes pervasive, employee retention programs can suffer and employee turnover rates often increase.
Avoiding the ‘Yes-Man’ Syndrome
The alternative to dialogue is monologue, a concept originally introduced by Jean Piaget, a child psychologist who devoted his life to understanding the way in which the intellectual abilities of infants, children and adolescents evolve.
Piaget found that from the age of about 4 years until age 7 children’s thinking is self-centered. According to Piaget, children have difficulty understanding life from any other perspective than their own.
This type of self-centered thinking was made apparent to Piaget when he observed the relationship between two preschool children. When two children were playing right next to each other for example, one with a coloring book and the other with a doll. They were observed to be talking to each other in sequence, but each child was completely oblivious to what the other was saying.
Jane: “I love my dolly, her name is Ann.”
Bill: “I’m going to color the sun red.”
Jane: “She has long, curly hair like my mother.”
Bill: “I’ll color the trees red, too.”
Jane: “I wonder what Ann’s eyes are made of?”
Bill: “I lost my blue crayon.”
Jane: “I know! Her eyes are made of glass.”
These types of exchanges are known as monologues and can develop in Supervisor-Subordinate relationships particularly where the supervisor is an Intrinsic Thinker who is either lacking in empathy or overly dominant.
Where this is the case, the ‘yes-man’ syndrome can develop. In extreme cases, all challenge to the ideas of the supervisor can fall away with the result that overly risky decisions can be made to the detriment of the wellbeing of the organization. This type of situation frequently occurs when an entrepreneur has set up and dominates a new business. Experienced venture capitalists typically replace the original founders of businesses they fund about 70% of the time often because of this type of problem.
Where the ‘yes-man’ syndrome develops, succession planning also suffers. It is not at all unusual for a retiring overly dominant Intrinsic Supervisor to leave behind a weak team with no potential successors in place.
Regular Performance Appraisals Improve Employee Motivation
While we all live in a world that is fast changing, not all change is a good thing. Regular and well-documented performance appraisal with oversight by more senior management can help. The Talent Chaser appraisal data shows that where this becomes part of the organization’s employee retention strategy, Intrinsic Supervisors can be trained to use well-designed subordinate task action plans that encourage subordinates to challenge innovators and, in doing so, help them to become self-critical. When this is the case, the quality of solutions to problems improves as does the motivation of the entire team. Motivated employees remain longer in roles and talent retention improves.
Talking of motivations, I’ve said it before but it bears repeating, that the ability of any organization to retain talented people as long-term employees depends to a large extent on the creation of an environment within which employees can remain well motivated. Data generated through the deployment of Talent Chaser shows that this can be much more easily achieved where employees’ traits, thinking styles, and motivational priorities are taken into account and used to help managers and their subordinates build effective interdependent relationships.
In this regard, the performance profile questionnaire has proved itself to be far superior to the personality test. This highly innovative tool measures the links between thinking styles and motivations. It also reveals links between behavioral traits and motivations that have before been overlooked.
I will be using data generated through the deployment of Talent Chaser to delve more deeply into these links in my blog posts. As I do so, you will begin to appreciate how you can use this knowledge to reduce the employee turnover rate within your organization while, at the same time, building employee performance management best practices. Use the form on the right to subscribe to our blog posts!