Hi :

BLUF :  One of my directs (otherwise a great worker) pushes back every year and threatens insubordination when I assign annual Relationship Improvement Goal.

Am I Crazy ?  Am I illegal ?  Am I asking too much of my directs ?  Is this so outside the ordinary that I should stop ?


Detail :  I have taken MT's idea of Results and Relationship very much to heart.  And that we can , as managers, ask our directs for continual improvement in Results and Relationships.

Each Year our organization asks Managers to set Goals with employees.  I have explained - many times - that effective performance behavior includes Day-to-Day Results and Positive working relationships.

To that End --  I ask my Directs to Create (or sometimes I assign) at least one Goal that will Improve their Results and One Goal that will improve Relationships.

* __ One of my Directs disagrees with the Results & Relationships idea to the point that he fights me every year on the very idea of creating a relationship improvement goal.___  

I am a High C and find this sort of thing difficult, as well.  So I totally understand his point of view.

Here are some examples of Relationship Goals from the past :

* Have Lunch with a counterpart in another department once this year.

* Be part of the Staff Development committee this year

* Be part of the customer engagement committee this year.

* Meet two new people at the annual Organization Rally - and Report back some basic information about them

* Engage two people in the building in small talk and get to know them a little

-- report back - Name | Job | How many years they have worked here | Where they are from |  And some kind of hobby or outside activity

All easy stuff ... all easy Annual Goals.

My resistant Direct is convinced that my requests for these kinds of Goals are illegal and unethical for me to ask of him.

That asking him to "pry" into other people's lives is unprofessional.  That asking him to be friendly and get to know new people in the organization is outside of his job that I can ask of him.

That I am having a wild idea that no other Manager has - or does with their directs.

He wants to go to HR about this.

Am I Crazy ?  Am I illegal ?  Am I asking too much of my directs ?  Is this so outside the ordinary that I should stop ?

 Am I delusional and that this exercise is making my Directs so unhappy that it is not helping ?


Yes, I have seen some improvements in each of my direct's relationship skills and performance in this area (or maybe I am kidding myself) - Although, they will not admit it. 

Is this just a battle of ideas and wills - that if I can't convince them that this is important - that I am losing my effectiveness because I am making them so uncomfortable about the goal ?

--- Some of my other directs don't really like it much, but I do get compliance.

--- I usually ask them to come up with their own Goal.  But this year - Just assigned the Two Person simple interview, goal.

++ --- and it doesn't matter if I ask this resistant direct to come up with his own questions or his own version of the goal that is palatable to him.  I have offered him this alternative many times.  He still resists and refuses the very idea of the Goal.

Thanks for your perspectives.


Uncle Auberon