A guide to ensuring your department will support your reliability culture
People are the heart of any maintenance reliability program and they have the ability to make the program succeed or fail. This is why managing the change to reliability culture is critical. We covered a few of the key pieces to change management in the previous post. But sometimes, not matter what change management technique(s) you use, the change may not be successful.
Why? You need the right people on the team and in the right positions. In the book Good to Great by Jim Collins, he states that “leaders of companies that go from good to great start not with “where” but with “who.” They start by getting the right people on the bus, the wrong people off the bus, and the right people in the right seats. And they stick with that discipline—first the people, then the direction—no matter how dire the circumstances”. If you haven’t had the opportunity to read the book, I highly recommend it, as it is a great read and many of the principles in the book can be applied directly to a maintenance & reliability program. Let’s take a look at getting the right people on the bus and in the right seats.
Getting the Right People on the Bus
Chances are you already have a team in place, so how do you know if you have the right people on your team? You need to do an analysis and look at few areas;
One of the most important areas to look at is the mindset of your staff. You need a well-rounded individual who champions and own the change and the reliability culture. In order to evaluate the people, you could ask yourself the following questions;
- Does the person fit with the team?
- Does the person fit with the organization’s current & future culture?
- Does the person see change as an opportunity?
- Does the person take ownership of their tasks?
- Is the person pragmatic?
- Does the person see the big picture and not just their little bubble?
Capabilities can be both technical and soft capabilities. In order to evaluate against these, you need to have a role profile for each of the current (or future) roles. Evaluate your team and see where the gaps are in the capabilities. This will allow you make sure the people are in the right roles and what it will take to get them ready for each role.
Sometimes you will find that some people are not the right person for where the team is going. Have the difficult conversation with that person and let them know where the team is going and ask them to commit to changing and supporting the changes. Typically, one of three things will happen;
- the person will change and fit with the team,
- the person will leave, or
- the person will be told to leave. Obviously, the third option is the worst case scenario, but sometimes it must be done to move the team forward.
Now, if you have the opportunity to start from scratch with your team, (or need to replacement someone) don’t just hire based on skills, look to see if the person will fit with the current and future culture. It is easier to train and build capabilities than to change a person’s beliefs and mindset. So hire for culture, and train the skill.
Getting the People in the Right Seats
Now that you have a well-rounded team with everyone on the same page, you need to make sure that everyone is in the right seat. This ensures that everyone knows what they are responsible and accountable for. Sometimes this may require moving people to different positions, or maybe change the internal process. Regardless, you will need to ensure everyone is clear on their roles and responsibilities.
Roles & Responsibilities
The Roles & Responsibilities workshop is a great tool to reinforce the change and the team. It involves everyone on the team and ensures that everyone knows what they need to do. The Roles & Responsibilities has been covered already here in detail.
Ideally, this is completed in a workshop setting, removed from the daily issues in the operation. A trained facilitator will ensure the workshop runs smoothly and concludes with an aligned team. If you are interested in learning more about how Eruditio, LLC can help, let us know.
Getting the right people on the team and working together is a difficult task. What have you done to align your team? How have you worked with your team to ensure everyone is on board with the upcoming changes? How do you evaluate the mindset or culture fit of your staff?
In the next post, we will cover how to accelerate the change and ensure the entire operation buys in.
Remember, to find success, you must first solve the problem, then achieve the implementation of the solution, and finally sustain winning results.
I’m James Kovacevic
Where Education Meets Application
References & Related Materials:
Good to Great – Jim Collins
Roles & Responsibilities
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