Austria     Belgium     Brazil     Canada     Denmark     Finland     France     Germany     Hungary     Iceland     Ireland     Italy     Luxembourg     The Netherlands     Norway     Poland     Spain     Sweden     Switzerland     UK     USA     

The curse of being good – Organisational Development Guide 2021, Part 3

A study on employee performance in the first nine months of the COVID-19 period. The study is based on international data from Mentors & Partners Group (MPG).

Manipulation within an organisation

“We already know that identifying and monitoring the INDIVIDUAL type will be a critical factor in 2021. It is RISE’s principle, and of course, common sense is required as well, not to designate a personality type as the root cause of organisational development problems. After all, every employee has the skills and qualities that can benefit a company. It’s very important to emphasise this fact, because INDIVIDUAL people themselves often misunderstand the statement. Only the person who misses the point can cause problems within an organisation, since if someone knows that they are a useful member of an organisation, then no analysis will change their mind. So being an INDIVIDUAL personality type in itself can be both positive and negative for an organisation. In 2020, they suffered the most from the confinement since meetings and talking to many people as possible are vital elements for them. On the other hand, the organisational development challenge, the increase in work efficiency via working from home, i.e., the deterioration of work efficiency under normal office conditions, is not caused by the INDIVIDUAL personality type. Only those INDIVIDUAL people who are also manipulative, and this manipulation is focused on maintaining and strengthening positions within the organisation” Miklós Palencsár interpreted the situation.

Thus, the situation is understandable because the larger set of people are normal INDIVIDUALs. A much smaller set of people are INDIVIDUAL and manipulative. And an even smaller set belongs to those INDIVIDUALs who use this manipulation for their own gain and to advance within an organisation, often to the organisation’s detriment. “Only a small percentage of INDIVIDUAL employees are simultaneously manipulative. We can say, however, that all manipulative people are INDIVIDUAL as well. However, there is a great deal of misunderstanding about manipulation in people’s minds. Because manipulation is an influence that one exercises along with one’s own interests. But if a single person’s interests coincide with corporate interests, we get a very good employee from the manipulative INDIVIDUAL type” the business mentor explained.

That is, the ability to manipulate is not necessarily bad for the company; in fact, it can be especially beneficial in certain circumstances. This topic is divisive: how do we consider that a manager manipulates an employee to improve their performance? They do not merely influence, but manipulate, by twisting the facts to create a manipulative situation with it. But in the end, the employee will be more successful, and their life will be better. How do we evaluate this?

“One thing we can say for sure: there is no place for manipulation within the organisation. After all, it is a dishonest, unpure game, and it only robs others of their energy and time from useful work. That is why we asked the RISE system years ago to work on it, to develop a clear indicator that defines the manipulative potential of a person. Then, after consultation with the manager of the manipulative employee, if the reports confirm the use of manipulation techniques, the colleague should be removed from the organisation as soon as possible!” concluded the head of MPG.

INDIVIDUAL damage within the company

For now, we have covered the topic of manipulation, so let’s return to the main topic, according to which the efficiency of work in office conditions is significantly impaired by INDIVIDUAL influences, such as unnecessary conversations and meetings, the effectiveness of which is at least questionable. “In addition to the fact that, as I mentioned, these unnecessary communication platforms are techniques of INDIVIDUAL workers to divert attention from the fact that they are not performing well, not working enough, and their work is unreliable. This is true only and exclusively for INDIVIDUAL employees who are otherwise in the wrong job, in the wrong position, but that job pays too well and may be too comfortable to lose. That is why these diversions are happening” the CEO analysed.

“Recently, I was at a meeting where more than ten of us attended a video meeting to develop new products for a company. More than ten people had been working for almost a year to formulate a product. We deal with the complex structure of product concepts. Of course, we employ the right professionals, and we have an international team of five for this task. But I would be very sad if, after two months, they couldn’t build a product concept while building a new, target group-based brand, along with a communication template. But we weren’t really in a hurry for the project because the company took twenty days to respond to an email, even though it contained relatively simple questions. They must have sold themselves well to poor owners within the company how much they work they had accomplished with their great professional pedigrees, but it was awful to see the wasted money this company paid to pay these people without results. It’s sad to see this even if we have nothing to do with that particular company’s development. For example, they had constant meetings. Normally, these meetings covered topics that my product concept specialist from the U.S would settle with a short email. Of course, during the video meeting, the presence of the INDIVIDUAL majority was clear, and it was evident in the end result” the CEO added.

So, unnecessary communication is a serious line item in company budgets. But the rate of INDIVIDUAL workers alone does not represent such a proportion that could cause serious problems. And who cares if a person speaks more than they should? “The real damage is done to the work of SUPPORTERS. It was perfectly visible in the measurements that the greatest increase in work efficiency was in the areas belonging to SUPPORTER employees during the transition to the home office. The explanation is simple. SUPPORTERs are good people; they need to be a good member of the community. Plus, unfortunately, they can be influenced by emotion. Routine is important to them, and they need time to do a good job. On the other hand, they like to do their job honestly, on time, because these give them security. Well, an INDIVIDUAL stops them from doing this, as a SUPPORTER won’t stop their co-worker with a “Sorry, don’t disturb me, I’m working now”. Especially when the INDIVIDUAL reaches out to the SUPPORTER with a personal problem, it will distract the SUPPORTER. And even though the INDIVIDUAL goes back to their desk after a good little chat and continues working where they left off, the SUPPORTER doesn’t work that way. Once they were taken out of their work, it takes time again for them to reengage themselves. Well, that causes real damage to organisations. After all, the larger the organisation, the more serious number of the SUPPORTER type is represented within the company” according to Mr Palencsár. So, the greatest efficiency gains occurred on the side of SUPPORTER employees, although they are the ones for whom the collegial work environment is important, so the transition to a home office was a challenge.

“Yes, it is clear from the data. The RULER and EXPERT are self-contained and cannot be affected in the workplace. For RULERs, the problem with the home office is that they easily get bored, and if there is no constant control over them, they don’t meet deadlines. Plus, they’re the ones who have started to look around for new job opportunities seriously. That draws their attention at home. The EXPERT is neutral in terms of where they do their work. No one can distract them because they can easily ignore the disturbance either at work or at home. A SUPPORTER is someone who can be a victim of distraction in the workplace, simply because people are important to them, and they really believe it when their INDIVIDUAL colleague finds them with another problem. After a while, of course, they already know that the point is to give them attention and focus, but they do not have the strength and dominance to silence the colleague” assessed Mr Palencsár. “In summary, I think the 2021 organisational reorganisation should be built on the lessons from the home office. We need to be able to identify INDIVIDUAL and manipulative-INDIVIDUAL colleagues within the organisation. SUPPORTER colleagues need to be provided with the conditions necessary for smooth work. This can also be a partial maintenance of the home office setup. But the most important thing in such a cost-testing situation is that companies need to allow their employees to focus on their work, and they need to make it impossible for others to draw this focus. If we know for who such workers are within our organisation, we really need to see if they are actually doing the right job if they are in the right position. Because if we don’t, we can’t prevent the deterioration of work efficiency. Which in this case will mean a return to the original, pre-home-office, not necessarily positive level. Of course, everyone is playing with their own company and its cost structure. As a consultant and organisational developer, our task is to clearly define this organisational map and give concrete decision preparation to a company’s HR and management” concluded the founder of Mentors & Partners Group.

Prev part

Chatterbox? Manipulation? Destroy it now! Organisational Development Guide 2021, Part 2