The other day I was watching a basketball game, during the game I noticed that not only are there “rules to this game”, and the better someone understands the rules, the better they can strategize and create a game plan to be successful in that environment.
Although basketball can be played many different ways, the “rules” don’t change. What if someone didn’t know they were playing basketball and created a strategy to win a soccer game? What if when the game started, the players began kicking the ball around the basketball court? Think about it … how effective would that be?
Organizations have many different environments within them, and many times people create strategies, yet they aren’t even aware of the “rules”. Not knowing what type of environment you work in, or worse, not knowing how to maximize your environment are 2 quick ways to get less than average results.
Knowing the “rules of game” when it comes to various types of environments is crucial to increasing productivity and creating better results.
The three types of environments are:
- Reactive environments
- Proactive environments
- Hybrid environments (both reactive and proactive)
These are the environments where you can forecast and have a very predictable day/week/month/year. These environments are easy to plan for and to set out direction that can be crystalized. These environments are also easy to create stability and you have the ability to plan ahead and foresee any issues that might arise.
The challenge with some proactive environments is that people often become complacent and lose enthusiasm because it is the same routine day in and day out. This can cause people to begin to think the grass is greener somewhere else. Creating sincere enthusiasm for the day to day is vital in a proactive environment.
These are the environments where it is hard to plan for because things can change in an instant. You never know how you day is going to go. You can plan for each day, but rarely does it go as planned. Although you can still be “proactive” in a reactive environment, you must strategize correctly, or else things get frustrating. These environments keep things fresh and exciting and can always have that “new” feeling. The challenge with these environments is that people can be frustrated due to lack of consistency and not being able the “see” what is going to happen in the future. For the wrong person, this type of environment will be very taxing and will probably cause quick burnout.
Obviously this is where the environment can be, and is, both proactive and reactive. These environments can create a little more predictability, yet things can still change in an instant. These environments bring stability with the feeling of uncertainty. The right person, one who is flexible yet still likes the ability to create more concrete plans for the future, will thrive in this environment. Again, the challenge with hybrid environments is that they can have a little too much structure for one person… and not enough for another.
As you can see from the descriptions, it’s not only imperative that you understand what environments you work in, but also understand how to create successful game plans and ensure you have the right people working in those environments.
Spend a few minutes and think about what environment you work in. Do you understand the “rules” to that environment? Does your team know the “rules”?
Share this with your team, and create practical game plans that you can execute within your environment. This will help you create an even better work environment, better results, and positive impact!