The last six months I facilitated a team in their development and I would like to share my experiences in this with you.
This team came from a situation of bad leadership, lack of trust and they were clearly ‘damaged’. After the first exploratory conversations it became clear that there were several themes that needed attention. This made me think of the ’10 habits of highly effective teams’ of the Being on Mission program; high performance teams emerge when members take responsibility, choosing to take ownership for the wellbeing of the team. They become willing to do whatever is necessary (within their values), so that the team can become exceptionally successful.
Highly productive and successful teams are characterised by the following habits:
- Responsibility, we choose
- Clear values, our foundation
- Vision, the power of vision propels us to action
- Trust, we really know each other. We can be vulnerable.
- Healthy conflict, we agree to disagree.
- Involvement and commitment, no involvement means no commitment
- We are on a mission, the habit of execution
- We hold each other accountable, a small committed group of people can change the world
- We are result-focussed, thoughts lead to actions. Actions lead to results
- We re-energize as teams and individuals, you can’t manage time… but you can manage your energy
The development of these habits is of course a process that takes time. By taking the ‘driver’s seat’ the team takes responsibility and the clear vision and goals function as a ‘internal navigator’, so this helps them to take decisions.
We had several working sessions with this team. We started with getting to know each other better, building trust and determine together the shared team-values. We worked on more awareness and insight in each other’s behavior en preferences, by working with perception and paradigm shift; how does our brain work when we observe behavior?
After that we worked on communication, feedback, taking team-decisions and how to connect with another person. The situation this team came from caused a lot of tension, so we also worked on awareness, insight and more relaxation in this and humor.
One of the nicest moments was when this team completed a complex team-task. They did the job in an amazing short time and when they succeeded one of the team members said: “Hey, we did this as a team and we didn’t need external leadership!”. This was a real ‘turning point’ for the team and they realized that, by taking more responsibility, they reached more self-organization.
In the meantime, a half year later, we clearly see development: more stability, team members actively take responsibility and they take on tasks. Good ideas get executed and the team-decision making is getting better. What a privilege to work with this team and watch them ‘bloom’!