Submitted by AJS on
I am a director at my shop (ie a manager or managers). Is it wise or appropriate to mandate all the people managers reporting to me conduct O3s with their directs? Is it wise or appropriate to "insist" on this at a company level? Or is it better to 'recommend' managers do this? My inclination is to include conducting O3s in the job descriptions for managers to communicate the value we place on them.
Fast is Slow
A lot is going to depend on how long you've been in your role, how strong your relationships are with your directs, how disruptive this change is going to be, and whether or not they immediately see value in it. Move too quickly or insistently, and you risk pushback and compliance instead of the commitment and buy-in that you want.
If you can, I recommend that you roll it out the way you roll out feedback: gradually and in small bites as you model the behavior yourself. Introduce the change, implement O3s first with your directs, and be flexible. Consider a cadence of once every two weeks and be consistent and disciplined in conducting them.
After 60 or 90 days, it'll become "normal" and they'll hopefully have seen some benefit. At that point, you ask them to implement the process with their directs so that they're experiencing O3s from both standpoints. You may have to lean on your role power a bit and communicate that the request isn't really a choice for them.
Once that's "normal," you can increase the frequency with which you do them. Making it part of the job description and expectation is a solid idea, especially for new people that you'll hire or promote into the role in the future.
Incorporating that and any other changes in responsibility and expectations can be timed with normal recalibration periods like when the fiscal/calendar/performance management year turns over.
Listing to MT, I assume there are people out there who resist O3s, but I've yet to meet one. Do it with your directs and my experience is you won't even have to suggest it, they'll start doing it with their directs. Then deal with any hold outs.
Now, I expect they may need some coaching on the agenda and the nuances. Some gentle questions on how their O3s are going every now and gentle coaching should handle that.
Yes - Model first then - require - That's what I recommend.
When I became Director of my organization I did O3's with every single staff member, even the skips, for the first 3 months.
I rolled them out as recommended by MT at the All Staff Meetings and All Staff Emails - and to everyone - as if they were all my Direct Reports.
After the 3rd month I let the Skips know that from now on their Direct Supervisors would be doing their O3's. And I would step back to only do O3's with my Directs
There wasn't a choice for the DR managers. They were expected to continue on as I had established.
This way everybody got the same message at the same time.
And they all experienced how I expected them to be conducted.
I also got to know every single person in the Org.
It took a lot of time in those first 3 months, but it was worth it.
You may not wish to -- or be able to - do this but I recommend that you model this for your DR's.
And let the Skips know that you do O3's with your DR's.
That way when O3's come down to them they know that even thier managers do the same thing.
O3s have so many benefits that there is no negative to making it a requirement. Here are a few examples of the benefits the team experienced since implementing O3s.
Even if a rep is resistent at first, push through the akwardness. The team and personal benefits are well work a month or more of awkwardness. Your team will thank you.