Improve Team Performance – Video

Dick Billows, PMP
Dick Billows, PMP

The need to Improve Team Performance is always a challenge for project managers. This  often includes dealing with an individual team member’s poor performance. Sometimes bringing about performance improvement is straightforward. First, the project manager identifies the behavior that is causing the performance problem. Next, the project manager communicates what he/she thinks is causing the problem. Then they suggest a solution. Finally, the employee changes their behavior and the project manager monitors the change. Oh, if only it was always that easy!

In this video, watch how a project manager deals with a team member whose behavior is causing a problem for the project.

Improve Team Performance: Video Synopsis

We see a project manager trying to cope with a very talented but difficult team member. First, the project manager does a correct assessment of the team member’s performance. Then she evaluates alternative ways of changing the team member’s behavior. She comes up with a clever solution that will let the project go ahead.

Here is the problem. The team member was redefining his project task based on his political preferences. He was not concerned about the project’s requirements and he disagreed with the project’s goal. He was giving speeches to company employees which actually undermined the project.

Here is the approach and solution. First, the project manager correctly assessed the team member’s performance. Then she evaluated alternative ways of changing his behavior. The project manager could not terminate the team member because the grounds for termination were not clear enough. The team member was popular with employees throughout the organization, so the project manager didn’t want to make a martyr of him. She had to change his behavior and get him to properly complete his task on the project. She faced a difficult challenge. She had to address the team member’s insubordination and come up with a good solution that would let the project move forward

The project manager cleverly redirected the team member’s efforts and got him to support the overall project goals. She made an insightful assessment of his personality type and traits. Then she focused on the correct way to communicate with him. Her communication technique let her persuade him to honor his original project commitment. The approach wasn’t an instant success and the two of them went back and forth in the discussion.  In the end, however, she succeeded by giving him different assignments and the project was successfully completed.






Author: Dick Billows, PMP

Dick has more than 25 years of project and program management experience throughout the US and overseas. Dick was a partner in the 4th largest professional firm and a VP in a Fortune 200 company. He trained and developed 100's of project managers using his methodology. Dick is the author of 14 books, over 300 articles and director/producer of 90 short project management training videos. He and a team of 25 project managers work with client companies & students across the US and in Europe, South America, Asia and the Middle East. They have assisted over 300 organizations in improving their project performance. Books by Dick Billows, PMP are on