Sunday, September 8, 2013

Building a team

How does one build a team? And ensures that it performs? We all know Tuckmans four stages of teams - Forming, Storming, Norming and Performing. 

But ever so often, you will find that in teams that there are some who do not contribute as much as they should. Or as much as they had all committed to at the outset when they were selected or self selected into the team. In my view, what works in building effective things are these things:

Get commitment from the team early on about the goal and what they will do in order to make it happen. At this stage, it is necessary to give people a choice about whether they want to be part of the goal at all. If not, find options for them to support the main team with what they can do - if there is scope to do that.

Once that goal level commitment is established, get the tactical level commitment - if it means showing up each day without making excuses and so on and so forth. At this stage, again, it is important for all the team members to agree on a code of sorts. Again, those who cannot give their commitments need to be asked to decide - commit or leave.

And then once again, weed out non performers early. Carrying passengers is good for trains, not for teams. Every team needs as many engines as it possibly can. And when I say engines, I mean, commitment engines because there are times when every ounce of energy is required.

Often, we make mistakes here. In weeding out non performers. In calling out issues early. And replacing passengers with engines. Because we want to be nice. Because they were nominated. Because of a million reasons to cop out than call out issues...Because, we want to be seen as nice guys..etc. etc.

But if you are the team captain, you need a laser sharp focus on the goal and unless every team member contributes that is never going to happen. Lesson learnt...

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