Scenario 2

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In preparing the presentation, Vika had worked closely with Maria, a finance professional working part-time on the project.

You are surprised that Maria hadn’t more fully prepared Vika. She has worked on similar projects in the past and has substantial experience in preparing project financial reports. She would certainly have known the types of questions that would be asked.

There aren’t any personal problems between Maria and Vika. What might be the reason for Maria’s lack of support for Ahmed?

What leadership approach could you have used with Maria?

Clearly the issue is not competence since Maria is a finance professional, so I think this is most likely a question of motivation.

When motivation is missing, there is a reduction in discretionary effort. Maria has probably done the bare minimum but has not thought more deeply about the challenges facing Vika when he presents.

As we have seen, the key motivating factors are:

  • relationships:
  • autonomy
  • mastery
  • purpose
  • status

Without additional information, I can only offer possible approaches.

In my discussions with Maria before the presentation, I would have actively listened to what she had so say to gain an insight into which motivational factors were most important to her. It may be that she feels a lack of autonomy – she is in a supporting role and would like to have had a bigger say in what information is presented.

She may feel that she will get little recognition, if any, for her work. Why isn’t she presenting the financial elements?

Maybe it’s boring to her?

Helping Vika needs to be sold to her. Here is an opportunity to develop her own skills in working with other functions in the business. Instead of accepting a secondary role, perhaps she could share the presenting duties with Vika. This would give her recognition and allow her to relationships beyond finance, including with executives.