Staff relations

Teamwork and idiots

Pinterest LinkedIn Tumblr

Jonar Nader

Jonar Nader says teamwork has nothing to do with people liking each other. It is the role of the leader to construct a team that works. This includes the removal of idiots from the team! Further below is a transcript of the video.

Get the Flash Player to see this content.

Here is the transcript:

Lisa Weir: Welcome back. We hear a lot in the workplace about, we’re one big family, we’re a big team, and this is going to take teamwork to get to the top of what we need.

Jonar Nader: Yes.

Lisa Weir: You really, kind of say, “Nah, teamwork…”

Jonar Nader: Yeah.

Lisa Weir: Not your thing.

Jonar Nader: No, it doesn’t work. You see, it’s not about teamwork. I want teams that work. And how do you construct teams that work? Look, we can play golf or we like together. That doesn’t help it. We can like each other or dislike each other, that’s got nothing to do with teamwork. Teamwork is like ingredients. It’s like how a chef makes a chocolate cake. A chef cannot make a chocolate cake out of a bag of potatoes. It’s just not possible. And you cannot make a team that works out of people who like each other or dislike each other or whatever. So, it is incumbent upon managers and CEOs and the leaders of the organization to actually construct with the due diligence that a chef would construct a team that works. And within that process, in the same way the chef has to pounce on the cockroach in the kitchen, you have to pounce on the cockroaches in your organization. But there’s a trick to that. See, I was in town for the fourth of July; in fact I was in St. Louis under the arches watching the fourth of July.

Lisa Weir: Oh wow.

Jonas Nadir: And look at, there’s a great analogy about this, you know when the fireworks are going up, there’s a huge thud, “Boom” and everyone is excited by that. To me, it brings back memories of, you know, Beirut in Lebanon where that was going off 24 hours a day for twenty years. And, you know, you wonder which building’s gone down. But anyway, “Boom” and they look up. And what they were hoping to see is this big firework that had this big boom. But the funny thing about light and sound is that light travels faster than sound, so when they look up, in fact, there was nothing to see, because the fireworks already done its thing. Then they hear the thud. And that’s how managers always get into trouble. The deed is done, the criminality has taken place, the intimidations happened and then they get a detection, they go, “Where is it? Oh, can’t see it. See Jonas, there’s nothing to worry about, there’s nothing there.” I go, “But it was there a second ago, you just didn’t look.” And so that – they never react when they should. And then when they look there’s nothing there to see. And that’s the, you know, the wisdom of actually knowing what’s going on. So teamwork is not about deciding to work together, it’s constructing a team that works together.

Lisa Weir: And how do you construct a team that works together? Because of course, you’ve got multiple personalities. You’ve probably, you’ve got someone like you, maybe that’s willing to speak up, take risks, bug everybody to some degree, because doggone it, Jonar, you’re just not doing what the rest of us think is right. And then you’ve got some followers too. You’ve got people who’ll just say, “Okay whatever. I just want to get out of this meeting. I don’t want to be here anymore.” And yet, you’ll have maybe the manager of this group saying, “No, we’re fine, we’re getting along. We’re okay. This is a good team. We’ll get it done, boss.” How do they know who’s going to work in that team?

Jonas Nadir: Right. Well, that’s why I don’t care for PhDs and MBAs because that doesn’t teach you how to know. There’s no Chinese philosophy that says, “Don’t find me a good horse-rider. Find me a man who can pick good horse-riders.” You know, it’s on knowing. And one of the steps is to actually realize that there’s no such thing as self-led teams. These new, you know, wonderful things that sell books to people that have placed corporate America really well on the center-stage of this new hype that keeps going. And one of the latest bits of hype is self-led, self-manage highly effective teams. And there is no such thing either. How? Have a single leader, and the leader must have full authority and full control. Do not appoint a leader to be a team leader if that person cannot hire, fire, move, and shake on-the-spot as quickly as a tennis player throws a backhand. Have you ever seen a tennis player stop midstream at Wimbledon, run up to the coach and say, “Do you think I should do it backhand here?” You just do it. And that’s the level of expertise you need. So then the point is, hire experts. Experts work wonderfully well with experts. They love it. It inspires them to see people bouncing off each other, “You’re a great electrician. I’m a great builder. You’re a great plumber. And together we’re going to make a great building.” But it’s when the fake, supposed experts are together, “Oh, I’m the marketing director.” “How did you become a marketing director?” “Well, I did ten million dollars last year in sales.” “Well what that has got to do with understanding marketing and channel development and advertising and…” “Oh, nothing. But I’m a marketing director, so be quiet, and I’m, you know…” So, don’t put idiots who don’t have the skills together. That’s a very simple way. But now you’re at a dilemma because you have a head-count freeze. And if you get rid of somebody, you’re not going to have the authority to bring them back again, so we’re just going to make-do. And the whole world is a make-do world. And that’s just won’t worked. And we know it won’t work but we can fudge it; we can just pretend because it’s – the bottom line, it’s easy to manufacture. And thanks to our accountants, who spent seven years of college teaching us how to do it. Because any accountant can fudge, you know, fudge any figure you like. We want truth and essence. But which CEO wakes up in the morning and looks at their product, and uses their product, and sleeps in their own hotel, and uses their own ironing service and eats their own food? None. They’re out there somewhere on another planet checking the stock market, and that’s all they see. And I say, any CEO who gets up and checks that ticket type; and any executive who has a ticket type of their stock price or to be sacked on the spot. Your job is not to check the stock price. It’s to check poor Mrs. Smith the last time she paid you good money to buy her husband and I, something rather, that just doesn’t work. And when she calls to complain, you say, “Oh wow, well, twenty minutes on hold, your call is important to us, and please bring it down; it might take two weeks to repair it.” Theft. You know, if someone stole your watch or something, you’d be after them. But corporations out there, stealing your time, energy, money, effort and they just get away with it, and get away with it. And we just have to stand up and say, not because stand up for our rights, I’m not saying, “Let’s stand up for our rights.”

Lisa Weir: Right.

Jonar Nader: I’m saying, let’s stand up for life. Let’s just start living. Life is so important, yet people steal it all the time.

Lisa Weir: True. I’m going to stop you one more time. Let’s take another break. Stay with us.

Comments are closed.