From our experience as team coaches in a variety of companies, there are very few groups or departments that may be termed as real teams. Most worrying is that these departments or groups do believe, mistakenly, they work very well as equipment.
We have accompanied many teams in their actual team meetings, through shadow coaching, consisting of two steps:
1. Observation of the meeting, communication, decisionmaking, leadership and team effectiveness.
2. Contents coaching team, returning events that we have observed or performing challenging questions to reflect and make decisions to improve and progress as a team.
In these meetings, we have seen that there are very few teams that are really computers. Usually team members do not provide a balanced, there is often too much weight on the team leader, communication is not sincere, no lack of self-criticism, emotional issue and many other errors that slow down the computer, causing poor performance is prevented.
The Adrian Gostick Chester Elton, in his book “Buenos Equipment, Unbeatable Projects”, have studied many high performance teams in various business and sports sectors, and have set up a model with the key issues that have been identified as common to all. I firmly believe we should cater to this model, not only because it is based on an extensive study of real equipment, but because it matches the characteristics most valued by employees of the companies that are on the top of the Best Place To Work, a prestigious ranking that is updated each year among companies worldwide.
And what are the three keys of those great teams? They are the following three:
– No surprises
– Give encouragement
Astonish. Is that all team members have a common commitment: giving the maximum that can at all times to achieve excellence (which incidentally is different from perfection, that is unattainable). This is every day all members wonder try another with new ideas, with effort or commitment, their gestures and improving skills. This first point, already, is very complicated, because it requires a full commitment by all. And requires perseverance and enthusiasm bombproof. Think if your team really is astounding internal and externally, offering to other departments or the company or clients the most of their abilities and performance.
No surprises. All the team members agree not to cause any unpleasant surprises. This implies that expectations about their work and behavior are very clear by all. If at a meeting a person says he will do something, You can not surprise others not doing. This also involves an absolutely honest communication. When there is honesty among team members, no unpleasant surprises. Arise the “I supposed…” “I thought…”, misunderstandings thinning the team environment and create uncertainty, distrust and fears. Hence, must immediately address conflicts or disagreements, so they do not become too entrenched and irreversible cancer.
Give encouragement. This is, perhaps, the concept that the authors of the book give more importance. Recognition between team members is essential, the constant encouragement given, the fact congratulate a special effort, by a small achievement, thanks for the generous gesture or fellowship, and many other related behaviors with what they call the orange attitude, regarding carrot (awards), always rejecting stick strategy (punishment for mistakes). This attitude has led to incredible speeds on computers that have practiced constantly and prolonged, and has also brought impressive positive changes in the companies where they lived.
One of the novel aspects of these three keys is that any of them should be implemented by all team members. Namely, is not enough that the team leader meets these three behaviors. Necessary, because you should be the, the main driver of the team, but not enough. The main key is that all team members should adopt as inalienable values the fact astonished among them, act avoiding surprises, and constant encouragement given. Are simple but extremely effective. Common sense, but not common practice.