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The Power of Hidden Teams

Two nurses. Same job; different hospitals. One provides great care for patients, the other doesn’t. Why?

Jordan has worked at Stanford Health Care as a clinical nurse in the orthopedic department for the past three years. In a recent interview with us, she described how thrilled she is to be in a role whose entire purpose is helping people get better one by one. In particular, she loves what she calls the interdisciplinary approach, in which the family, the case manager, the physical therapist, the physician, the occupational therapist, the social worker, and the nurse all come together to choose the best care for each patient.

Fritz has been a clinical nurse for about the same amount of time, but he works for a different department in a different hospital. He works the same long hours Jordan does, but unlike her, he is not part of an interdisciplinary unit. He is merely one of 76 nurses, all of them assigned to rotating shifts whose members change from one week to the next, and all of them overseen by two administrators and one nurse supervisor. He is struggling. He embarked on his nursing career with as much passion to help people as Jordan did, but now he’s tired, burned out, and thinking about quitting.

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The Most Engaged Employee in the World

When you think of someone who is engaged with their work — who has a clear sense of purpose and feels safe and confident in their role — what do you picture? Someone who works on a team, or alone? Does the person have one job, or two? How often does she work remotely, if at all? And does having a pet somehow factor in?

Marcus Buckingham, the head of People + Performance research at the ADP Research Institute, and Ashley Goodall, the senior vice president of leadership and team intelligence at Cisco, have answers to these questions. They’re based on a survey of more than 19,000 workers across the globe — and some of them may surprise you.

The Feedback Fallacy

The debate about feedback at work isn’t new. Since at least the middle of the last century, the question of how to get employees to improve has generated a good deal of opinion and research. But recently the discussion has taken on new intensity. The ongoing experiment in “radical transparency” at Bridgewater Associates and the culture at Netflix, which the Wall Street Journal recently described as “encouraging harsh feedback” and subjecting workers to “intense and awkward” real-time 360s, are but two examples of the overriding belief that the way to increase performance in companies is through rigorous, frequent, candid, pervasive, and often critical feedback.

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Reinventing Performance Management

At Deloitte we’re redesigning our performance management system. This may not surprise you. Like many other companies, we realize that our current process for evaluating the work of our people—and then training them, promoting them, and paying them accordingly—is increasingly out of step with our objectives.

In a public survey Deloitte conducted recently, more than half the executives questioned (58%) believe that their current performance management approach drives neither employee engagement nor high performance. They, and we, are in need of something nimbler, real-time, and more individualized—something squarely focused on fueling performance in the future rather than assessing it in the past.

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