How many band-aids (interventions) have you got within your organisations? Plenty, I say! They all came about and added to the previous ones to address challenges. Now you have too many of them and still have the same challenges. Why? Because you can no longer see the problem from the pile of plasters in front of you.
Organisations are complex entities that require careful management to ensure their continued success. They are like the human body. In the same way, doctors diagnose and treat illnesses in the human body, managers & leaders must diagnose and treat problems within organisations. However, like doctors, managers can sometimes treat only the symptoms of problems rather than addressing the underlying issues.
When doctors treat only the symptoms of an illness, they risk creating new symptoms and masking the real problem. The same is true for managers who treat only the symptoms of problems within their organisations. For example, if employees are unhappy and unproductive, a manager might introduce a series of organisational interventions, such as team-building exercises, birthday celebrations, or employee of the month awards. However, these interventions may not address the root cause of the problem and may even create new problems, such as resentment among employees.
Managers may need to stop all interventions and observe what unfolds to address the real issues within an organisation. This can be risky, as it requires managers to temporarily withdraw all treatment from the organisation, allowing problems to show themselves in all their glory. However, this is often the only way to identify and address the underlying issues.
By observing what unfolds within the organisation, managers may find that employees do not need the interventions they have provided. For example, they may find that employees do not need birthday celebrations, employee of the month awards, or team-building exercises. Instead, they may need more meaningful and challenging work, better communication from their managers, or a more supportive work environment.
Remove all your interventions and allow the underlying cause to surface, then prescribe the correct "medicine".
To address the underlying issues within an organisation, managers may need to stop all interventions and observe what unfolds. By doing so, they may find that employees do not need the interventions they have been providing and may be able to identify more meaningful solutions to the organisation's problems.