Top 5 tips for outperformance

Sir Dave Brailsford, MBA, CBE, Team Principal, Team Sky and former Performance Director, Great Britain Cycling Team, gives top 5 tips for outperformance. His success is based on a theory of ‘marginal gains’ – significant improvement is obtained through a large number of marginal increases.

1. Recruit the best people that you can possibly find – but focus on attitude and behaviour. We have previously written about this – we know from all the work we have done in selection that it is easier to impart skill and knowlede than change values.

2. Whilst you can’t ceate a disciplined team by letting people run riot, individuals are more motivated and creative if they are empowered to make decisions and have the ownership to see these decisions through. Our own research into mentors found that autonomy was a critical success factor in making the mentoring relationship work.

3. Provide absolute clarity over role, responsibility and boundaries and double check that the individual accepts the role. We know from research that lack of role clarity is one of the key drivers for workplace stress.

4. Be clear about your values/standards/expectations and hold people accountable to these. There is nothing more demotivating to a high performer to see underperformance go unchallenged. Why should they give their best when others are not required to do so?

5. Create a happy environment where people feel they’re looked after and where they feel they can be open with each other.

How many of these factors does your company currently demonstrate? Do you know what makes your employees happy and to create an open and trusting environment?