Teams come in all shapes and sizes. It might be the personal team of your family, or your management team at the office; the principles are always the same.
This blog is a quick look, backed by research, of the most important relational elements that make great teams, whether inside of an organization or at home.
The great part about all of these elements is that they are all easily implementable, no matter the current status of your team!
Wherever you’re at, I hope you can apply these 5 ideas to the key relationships in your own life.
1. GREAT TEAMS HAVE BUY-IN AROUND A SHARED MISSION & VISION.
Great teams have a shared mission/vision that their people can get behind. Before your team can ever become a real team, the team members have to have something that drives them to be a great team. Something bigger and more existential that will motivate them to pursue greatness. The teams vision sets the team on a shared path with a shared direction.
It’s the teams North Star, and without it, the team will not rally.
Too many teams (even family teams) flounder because they don’t have a shared vision that inspires them to stay united and grounded as a team.
Does the team you’re part of have a purpose-driven shared vision?
2. GREAT TEAMS PRIORITIZE PROCESSES OVER OUTCOMES.
Taking a play out of Apples play book, they were famous for saying, “culture beats strategy.” Apple obviously got it right considering their incredible success. Great teams place a higher emphasis on how they go about reaching their goals as opposed to the goals themselves.
Focusing on the process is analogous to focusing on healthy roots of a tree, and not the fruit of the tree itself. Focusing on the fruit and neglecting the roots will be a short-lived tree. But focusing on the roots will produce fruit for the long term.
Too many teams place too high an emphasis on key performance indicators at the expense of culture, morale, and keeping their people engaged in the team. KPI‘s are obviously very important to look at, but not at the expense of the health of the team.
Focusing on how we are going to get there as opposed to getting to the destination at any cost, is a sign of a great team.
Is your team more process driven or outcome driven?
3. GREAT TEAMS CREATE SOLUTION-FOCUSED ENVIRONMENTS OF OPTIMISM.
Another hallmark sign of a great team is one that instills a “can-do“ attitude amongst the members. On these teams, each member has a mindset that is optimistic and solution focused.
As opposed to a mindset of pessimism which kills the teams momentum and positive energy.
Great team members are always encouraging one another to see what is possible as opposed to what is not possible. This type of mindset is powerfully contagious and helps great teams achieve great things.
For the team that you are part of, even in your family, do you see it defined by solution focused optimism?
4. GREAT TEAMS COMMUNICATE EARLY & COMMUNICATE OFTEN.
Great teams communicate early, and communicate often.
Me to my client: “How long is that been bothering you?”
Client: “For a really long time. Feels like since the beginning.”
Me: “What’s happened when you’ve addressed it?”
Client: “I haven’t had a chance yet.”
I hear this a lot with teams that aren’t performing as well as they could. Something is happening and no one is talking about it. At least not directly tackling the problem head-on.
Great teams master communication with each other. They talk early, and they talk often.
For the team that you are part of, what does the consistency and clarity of communication look like?
5. GREAT TEAMS CEMENT TRUST BY CREATING INTERDEPENDENCE.
It’s not enough for the members of the team to rely on the leader. They also need to rely on each other. Great teams understand that trust is built and solidified by creating a healthy interdependence amongst the team members.
Healthy interdependence is: “I need you, and you need me”.
On great teams, there are no rogue operators going solo, and there are no “useless” under-performers.
Everyone has a crucial role on the team. They all need each other and lean on one another.
For the team that you are part of, how interdependent are the members?
Creating healthy and high-performing teams is a critical part of being both occupationally, and personally successful.
If the key relationships in your life are not operating as well as you know they could, consider implementing one or more of these five ideas and see how powerfully improved your team can become.
Contact me today if you are wanting to improve the quality of the team you are part of!