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A Practitioner’s View of PCS

Benefits of PCS – Stephens Edwards is a Leadership Development Coach and licensed PCS Practitioner. 

Now based in the Czech Republic, Stephen is a huge advocate of the Performance Climate System, and uses it with his clients to allow teams to analyse the factors impacting their overall performance and to assist them in creating action plans to operate better. 

Stephen took a few moments to tell us about his experience with PCS.

What first attracted you to the Performance Climate System?

PCS was recommended to me by a trusted colleague and friend, whose opinion I value highly.  I specifically travelled to London to attend the practitioner training and meet Gordon.

How does this compare to other tools you’ve used in the past?

Having not long ago come out of a thirty five year spell in the corporate world, I found it to be so much more comprehensive than anything that had been presented to me previously. In spite of working for an organisation with a professional human resources department, nothing of this ilk had been utilised. On reflection I could see that whilst coverage of teams was included in the assessment and other processes that we used, they had covered, at best, little more than what I term the usual “Roles n Goals”.

By showing that whilst these ‘traditional’ elements, along with processes, are of course important, they are far from being all that contributes to a team performing at its best.  PCS shines a light on facets that many people simply never consider. 

How was the training you received?

The training day was excellent. I personally found it engaging right from the outset and the time flew by. My only complaint is that I could have easily stayed longer to delve in even deeper! The materials presented are clear and a valuable reference resource to recall when making initial presentations to potential clients. The online support material is also extremely useful.  Given the continuous encouragement to reach out with any questions or concerns, training and support is most definitely ongoing.

How can you see this fitting in to your current service offering?

As mentioned I have come from the corporate workplace, specifically from manufacturing and precision measurement. Modern production facilities and their support resources are very heavily team based structures, with all the benefits and drawbacks that this brings.  I have personally witnessed managers and supervisors struggle to identify why teams are not working as they believe they should. I very genuinely believe that this tool and the supporting work that follows on from it, can be a real-world benefit to organisations of this type.

PCS is a tool that actually delivers a current “snap shot” to be used as a foundation to build an action plan on. The effectiveness of this plan is then measured again as time progresses, changes are monitored and processes evolved. It is something tangible that clients can ‘hang their hat on’.  When dealing with people from a technical background, they often need quantitive, empirical output from any tools.  Whilst this is not always easy when dealing with people, I see PCS as offering them that base. In showing that a team’s performance is made up of more than just the Goals, Roles and Processes then we can also allow them to monitor more of the uncertainties that significantly influence the team’s ‘score’. 

Would you recommend PCS to other development or change consultants?

I already have and shall continue to do so!

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Zac's Challenges:

Zac’s tech business is growing rapidly. He’s gone from being a developer with a good idea to now overseeing an ever-expanding team. Zac knows that in order for the business to grow successfully, it needs to stay true to its founding values and his staff need to feel valued and engaged. Zac wants to understand if he and his team are on the same page and he needs to do it quickly and cost effectively.

Zac's PCS Solution

Zac decides to use PCS Lite to get a quick temperature check of how his team are performing and what they think about the business. The PCS Lite report quickly surfaces the fact that his team have lost sight of the organisation’s purpose and goals. Zac realises that he needs to improve his on-boarding processes and help orientate the new team members better in the company culture and vision. 6 months later, Zac uses PCS Lite to check his new onboarding process is working; concludes that the growing team are much better aligned to his vision and are generally operating in a more positive working environment.

Annabel's Challenges:

It’s Annabel’s job to help the Partners in the firm manage their clients and ensure they’re consistently adding value. Recently, Annabel has been asked by one of the Partners to find a tool or framework that the consultants can use to benchmark new clients looking for team and leadership improvement programmes. It needs to be cost-effective, established and reputable and able to be branded with the firm’s own logo.

Annabel's PCS Solution

Annabel recommends PCS Pro to the Senior Partners as it provides an objective measurement of team and leadership climate against which the consultants can build performance improvement programmes. PCS has a good track record, academic validation, excellent training and customer service, so she’s confident that it’s the right tool for the firm’s consultants to use.

Sarah's Challenges:

Sarah has to keep across the multiple training and development needs in the organisation and do it within a tight budget. Recently, Sarah’s been asked to design a L&D programme that improves the staff retention rate and helps staff feel more engaged with the changes happening in the organisation, not least the shift to more flexible working.

Sarah's PCS Solution

Sarah uses PCS to measure how different teams across the organisation are performing and look at any patterns which suggest the need for organisation-wide, leader or team training. Sarah notices that all teams and leaders have a low climate score in the Processes segment. Sarah knows that allocating budget in this area will improve performance. She works with the Senior Management Team to review the organisation’s processes as they transition to more flexible working and designs a training programme to support staff in the transition. She’s helped staff to feel supported, acknowledged and engaged which ultimately drives performance. 

Jim's Challenges:

Jim’s client has a team that’s not performing as well other teams in the organisation. The team has a high staff turnover, sickness and the lack of cohesion is impacting the team’s wellbeing and performance. Jim needs to get to the bottom of why this is happening and design effective coaching interventions which can generate tangible results for his client.

Jim's PCS Solution

Jim uses PCS Pro to measure / benchmark how the team and leader are performing across the 6 segments critical to team performance – Goals, Roles, Processes, Adaptability, Connection and Resilience. He can immediately see the disparity in Goals, Processes and Connection between the leader’s perception and those of her team. He uses this information to build a coaching programme designed align team and leader. After 6 months, the team seems to be more settled and productive. Jim remeasures using PCS Pro – the results show the client the effectiveness of his coaching intervention.