What Criteria Do You Use To Select Team Members?

You are not teaching an old dog new tricks!

Courtesy of VJBL.com

 I have a new team this week, they are an interesting bunch.  I wonder what selection criteria if any was used to roll out this team.  As a coach, I am always looking to set up teams for success, and it starts with the right selection.

After a brief introduction, the team moved back to its sprint planning. I offered some suggestions as they moved from story to story, and noticed one person very disconnected. In fact, he was totally disengaged and had his head down for the most part.  The manager who introduced me, remained listening and chiming in on and off.  At one point the conversation went to work from home on certain days, and this manager replied, there may be a need to revisit this as we are trying to form a team.  That was the straw that broke the camels back, the disengaged team member jumped up and said, “that is it, this is not for me, you can’t teach an old dog new tricks”.  He proceeded to walk out as the manager tried to get him to stay and calm down.

The team is made up of introverts, shy, and comfortable souls.  This is no criticism, simply how I see them today.  However, when you select members of a team, you may want to balance this.  Too much of one type of person, will make it harder for the team to grow. Specially if you have someone who does not believe in what you are doing.  I recommend that as you select people, think it through, know who you are selecting.  You don’t want to just select based on skills.  Sure this is important, but consider other things.  Such as personality compatibility, are they analytical, agreeable to everything, or display type A behavior.  Are they competitive, highly strung, over achievers, or as in this case, unwilling to change much of what they do.  Are they passive aggressive, as some on this team, or perhaps they prefer to avoid conflict. Regardless of the personality type, you want a good balance, not too much of one or the other.

Introducing different personalities, encourages good dialogue and promotes healthy teams. You won’t have the team agreeing to anything and everything that is put to them.  It contributes to a positive work environment.  The mix helps to compensate for personality strengths and weaknesses   Each personality type helps drive the project in a stable manner.

Okay, it your turn.  What personality types do you have on your team? Was personality types consider as part of team selection?

“It is not a bolt to be tightened into place, but a seed to be planted and to bear more seed toward the hope of greening the landscape of idea.”

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