As we get started, a reminder of the foundations of team effectiveness. As we look back to research undertaken throughout the 1990s and 2000s by researchers and writers such as Hackman and Wageman, as well as Katzenbach and Smith, we know that teams need certain ingredients to be successful. I’ve written on these, and talked about these under the banner of The Six Factors of High Performing Teams. Check out these posts here. In brief, teams need:
- Shared purpose or mission
- Shared performance goals
- Shared behavioral norms
- Shared team practices
- Shared commitment
- Clear roles
Recent research now points to the other need of psychological safety. From forming team agreements on how we want to behave and operate with each other, to being able to speak constructively without fear of retaliation, safety forms the basis.
Area #1: Who are we as a team
One of the foundational starting points for any team development is getting to know each other. In addition to strong relationships, teams which excel also have shared knowledge of what each other does.
Much of the foundational team development work I do with intact and virtual teams is in the areas of strengths and/or styles. Helping teams understand their unique strengths, and talents helps them appreciate what their skills are, individually, so they can see things at a meta level.
Have team members participate in one of the many assessments available and schedule at least a half a day for the team to share their insights with each other. Map the team out and explore what their natural styles and strengths are, where they align, where they overlap, and what adjustments are necessary for the work you are facing.
Resources you may want to check out on this includes:
The Everything DisC – visit our site dedicated to these services here
The Five Behaviors of a Cohesive team
Understanding who we are as a team and what we bring that’s unique, helps us leverage our relationships, clarify roles and identify “go to” team members for certain projects.
Potentials Realized | Coaching Team Leaders
Team and Leadership Development | Coaching | Retreats.
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You can grab a copy of my new book, Effective Virtual Conversations, at Amazon. You can also purchase a copy direct from our site, signed by me!
Looking to schedule some team development this fall? Contact me to discuss whether the Everything DiSC or the Five Behaviors of a Cohesive Team may be a great starting point.