Feedforward workshop: Knowing where our strengths lie as an individual and as a team
Liandon is Alliander’s expert centre. Liandon designs, manages and maintains complex grids and large (industrial) plants, with it’s 750 employees. The role of the fast-growing Strategic Environmental Management (SOM) team is changing at Liandon. To run through this process properly, the result oriented group wanted to find answers to the question: what are our strengths? The feedforward workshop will help them out. ‘It’s really nice to look at yourself and others in this way.’
Liander’s SOM team works for operators, energy suppliers and contractors, to name a few, on energy infrastructure projects and projects aimed at sustainable area development. In addition, the department is not only responsible for the technical legal settlement, but also ensures that a support base is created for the project in a relevant district or region, among other things.
In 2008, when Alliander split off from Nuon (Vattenfall), the team only consisted of five people. Now there are 25: in addition to manager Karin van der Ploeg, there are consultants, project managers and lawyers. “The most significant change in recent years is that we are already thinking along from the beginning of a project, while we used to only join at a later stage, for example, to apply for the necessary permits”, Karin explains.
There are many large projects in the pipeline for grid operator TenneT and Alliander over the next few years. Karin: “We have a lot of work to do over the next two years. So we can’t keep doing it the same way as always, we need to take a smarter approach.”
Knowing where our strengths lie as an individual and as a team
The team is therefore at the verge of change. “We’ve always done everything ourselves, but now we’re considering to outsource some operational tasks and focus more on directing”, says Karin. “The extent to which this occurs, will vary per project. And it is exactly here that our pitfall lies: We are very involved professionals and want to bring projects to a successful conclusion, which means that we perform many tasks ourselves.”
To accommodate the change as best possible, the team firstly wanted to sketch a clear profile of themselves. Karin: “We will need to decide very carefully where to use which people, for which projects, and how we will use this diversity and strength in the team. Then we will need to know exactly what we, as a team, are good at, but also what the individual team members are good at.” This is part of the reason why the team wants to grow and improve, and to work on the subject of giving and receiving feedback.
The reason why the SOM team called on feedforward analyse™ , was mainly thanks to the positive outlook of this approach. Itske van Lith, senior consultant in the SOM team: “We often have training courses in teams, and you have to be willing to open yourself for such courses. Furthermore, positive feedback is much better than focussing on negative things, or things that aren’t there.”
Positive dialogue about our qualities
Muriel Schrikkema developed the feedforward analyse™ because neuroscience research shows that people have difficultly accepting feedback on their performance. The feedforward analyse™ provides insight into the qualities of teams and team members, and helps them to build on this…