Monday, 20 February 2012

Boldly going where social enterprises don't always go: Building a good team (with some help from Star Trek)

So, I'm looking to build a team. Sometimes when setting up social enterprises, we don't think enough about building strong teams, perhaps because we mainly judge people on whether they carry our mission. One of the 8 Ps of Powerful Social Innovation is People. I was talking about teambuilding to a friend the other day and he said that I needed to build a team the Star Trek way. This caused confusion, especially as I'm not a Trekkie (sorry for everyone I've just offended)! What do Captain Kirk, Mr Spock, Mr McCoy and Mr Scott have to do with creating a social business? But then he explained the different types of roles you need to create a strong team; below are the profiles I found online which describe it better than I can:
  • Captain Kirk - Catalyst (Often Myers Briggs NF): The Enterprise Captain will bend the rules  and defy what analysis or engineering says is not possible. Kirk will dispute what is logical and search for what is human and even what is spiritual (along with McCoy).  Kirk makes connections on a psychological, emotional and spiritual level. He seeks the universal oneness in his voyages, but he will act out of intuition and take action just to see what happens or upset an opponent's predictions about his strategy. 
  • Mr Spock - Visionary (Often Myers Briggs NT): Always the logical and analytical First Officer. Spock wants to make up logical structures that connect ideas, not people or values.  He creates the theory or blueprint and visionary model of abstract concepts to solve problems based upon time series and historical analysis and simulation.  He is not bothered by traditional categories and likes to see the connections that will result in his reasoned intuitive leaps about the big picture. Spock peers at the vision of the universe on his screens.
  • Mr Scotty - Traditionalist (Often Myers Briggs NF): The Chief Engineer gets upset when things are out of order and not being run by the book. He is stressed when he has to fix the engines that Kirk asks him to push beyond their limit. Scotty is the sceptic, questioning if something can be done and wanting to follow tradition.  He likes to know where he is in the organisation chart. He thinks with hierarchies and categories. He is sensing and judging and then relating things and can treat people as things and thing-tenders.
  • Mr McCoy - Troubleshooter (Often Myers Briggs SP): When there are problems, McCoy will question and undermine authority by bringing up the human value and moral issues. McCoy challenges the existing categories that Spock, Kirk and McCoy create.  He is the critic and trouble shooter (a bit of a rebel).  He challenges the military-types with his eat, drink and be merry role. He dislikes being the cog in the wheel (be it a logical, military, or administrative one ).  He can be radical in his approach to problem solving in groups.