REFLECTING ON HOW WE HAVE GROWN
By: Performance Capacity Development (Belbin SA), Adapted from Belbin UK. October 2020.
2020 has been a whirlwind of change and uncertainty for all of us. We at Performance Capacity Development and Belbin SA have taken a step back to reflect on how we have adapted, what we have learnt and how we have grown.
As the concept of lock down in South Africa was becoming a soon to be reality, we quickly developed a strategy of how we could adapt to this environment. We had always worked in a blended format, with some days in the office and others working from home. While we had done feedbacks telephonically and a lot of the admin work from home, we had always done our psychometric assessments, training and workshops face to face.
First things first, we needed to communicate to clients and test providers, gather information and most importantly polish up our ‘tech-savviness’. Together with the rest of the world, we entered the world of Zoom and Microsoft Teams. I am happy to say that we quickly managed to get ourselves organised. Lockdown gave us the chance to re-assess personal and work priorities. We had the opportunity to consider whether our old ways of working best serve us in future, or whether the time is ripe for change.
We found that many of our psychometric assessments can be done remotely while still upholding ethical and legal standards. One can still supervise and support assessees through these virtual platforms. While the interpersonal cues we receive from being physically present with someone are absent, we have found alternative ways to connect and other valuable qualitive information via virtual communication mediums. For example, did the candidate read the information email and whether they prepared their computer and environment for the testing. We are also mindful that there are those who are not comfortable with a computer or do not have the resources to be able to be tested remotely. The ‘new normal’ is therefore a blended service offering of face to face and virtual assessments.
Performance Capacity Development is the Belbin distributor for Southern Africa. We therefore provide Belbin Accreditation Training and other Belbin services. Belbin Head Office (UK) was quick to support us throughout lockdown, which enabled us to bring the Belbin accreditation training to our clients in a virtual format. Again, the silver lining amongst all these changes is that participants can now be trained from the comfort of their homes with no flights, driving, accommodation costs and so forth. This has substantially increased the interest in our accreditation training.
Belbin Team Roles has played a key role in adding value to the services we offer our clients. How do we begin readjusting to this shift in our work-life balance, and what impact does this have on our behaviours? What do our teams look like now and how do we move forward? We realised that we should be more mindful than ever of the needs of colleagues.
Perhaps when it comes to re-examining what we as individuals, our teams and businesses need, we can call on familiar frameworks but look to build something new, keeping what works and changing what doesn’t. In the past, we might have recognised the need for large-scale change, but have perhaps been deterred by the upheaval involved. Now the upheaval has come to us. When it comes to our teams and the way we work, we can build back better too.
One of the most encouraging things has been to hear about all the inventive ways people have been using Belbin Team Roles to adapt to everything this year has thrown at us all. From managing virtual teams to building CVs and discovering new skills. It’s wonderful to see the language of Belbin Team Roles helping students, professionals and teams flourish within a rapidly-changing environment.