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Data Dome Resources – Success Stories: Combating the Status Quo

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Combating the Status Quo: The Mountain Can Be Moved

A major Atlanta-based telecommunications company was faced with the challenge of deregulation.



Scenario:

Top level decision-makers including Vice Presidents and Managers



Background:

The long-regulated telecommunications industry had just been deregulated. In order to survive in their dominant position, the company would require thinking "outside the box": coming up with innovations, new and better ideas, and creative thinking.

The leadership predicted that this group would not be creative enough to succeed, and would be unable to make the adjustments needed to meet their new goals.



Revelations:

Behavioral style analysis showed this to be one of the most inherently creative groups with which Art Schoeck has worked.

43 of the 58 Vice Presidents and Assistant Vice Presidents participating had the rare combination of drive-for-innovation with the drive-for-quality that produces carefully thought-out innovations.

However, the style analysis also showed that without exception, all 43 of these very creative individuals lowered their creativity at work, bowing to the rules and regulations of "the box." Individuals do not change their natural behaviors without a reason. What perceptions about the environment made them drop their creativity just when it was needed?

After eliminating some possible causes of this profoundly unified adjustment it became clear that the problem was not with these individuals, as had been assumed, but with the working environment of the company itself.

It was not because they did not possess the necessary skills. It was not because they did not know they were supposed to be more creative.

In a breakout of testimonials, participants came to the consensus that despite the stated needs and goals of the organization, the flexibility needed to try new and different things was punished, not rewarded.

Time and again, risk-taking was not supported but criticized and ridiculed, especially if it failed to produce immediate results.

Likewise, if one did nothing but go along with the status quo, steady raises and bonuses were forthcoming. The compensation system rewarded status quo and penalized risk-taking.



Solutions:

The company was advised to align the compensation system and work environment with current needs: to support risk-taking, to discontinue their counterproductive rewarding of the status-quo, and to otherwise encourage employees to "unbury" their creativity.



Bottom Line:

Leadership thought their problem was with their people - that they were either unmotivated or unskilled. They were wrong.

Through a combination of behavioral style discovery and then consensus on the meaning of the results, it became obvious that the working environment that had been sculpted by leadership (wherein innovation and creative thinking were discouraged) was the actual problem.



Read more Success Stories or give us a call at 404-814-0739 to discuss solutions that are right for your situation.
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