April 27, 2016 Leadership Insight

Building Leadership Teams

Line Of Business People Listening To Presentation Seated At Glass Boardroom Table

Dear Leaders

In recent months, I have been facilitating workshops with Senior Leadership teams to enhance Team Work, and to remove “Silo” mind-sets and behaviours.

My engagement as a Coach often requires a scope of focus to work with my coachees.  Increasingly, the stakeholders are stating “teamwork” as one of the top priority of development for Senior Leaders.

The Leadership Team of every organisation is required to provide the vision, aspirations,and goals of an organisation.  These Leaders permeate the entire organisation with significant impact and influence.  If for a moment, the Leadership Team were not in sync, how else would the many departments reporting to them be aligned to the organisation’s vision and aspirations?

Therefore, it is imperative that the Leadership Team of any organisation, large or small, understand the significance of building a strong Leadership Team.

A strong Leadership Team have to possess a common set of core values, even though they are made up of individuals with varying values.  This set of common core values become the “bedrock or foundation” of the team.

The establishment of the core values serve as the starting point in forming a “Great Team.”  Consequently, the Leaders would consciously impart these values to their respective teams (departments or units).  “Teamwork” is officially formed when a set of share core values are being lived by the members.

Some Key Qualities of Great Teams:

  1. “Common Purpose and Core Values”
    • There is a Common Purpose that binds every team, be it the vision, aspirations, or goals.  This is the very reason that the team chooses to own together, build together, and achieve together.
    • The acceptance of Core Values is crucial as that is the platform that will enable the team to function synergistically, producing a well-oiled “machinery and environment.”
    • “Working Chemistry” brews easily because all team members share the same top values.
    • The set of values enables relationships to thrive, as individuals with similar values “attract each other.”
    • The Purpose is the “Being” and the “Desired End State,” while the Core Values are the “Vehicles” that bring them towards the Purpose.
  2. “Believe in One Another”
    • Members know the strengths and talents of every individual, and they do not hesitate in acknowledging them or tapping into them.  the strong belief in each other builds a common bond of “backing each other up,” and it involves stepping in voluntarily to provide assistance or help without being asked.
    • It is equivalent to the military or any armed forces (Policemen, Firemen, etc.) where the members “entrust their lives” to one another.  In the corporate world, it would then be “entrusting their livelihood.”
  3. “Deep Trust”
    • Instead of competing against each other, they unite to compete as a team.
    • Trust between members is deep.  They value the team’s desires and goals, more than their individual desires because the team’s achievements will ultimately outweigh the individual’s achievements.
    • Trust is built over time, tested and reliable.
  4. “Collaborations”
    • Team members work as partners, and not as colleagues.  There is recognition that working together intentionally produces extraordinary performances and outcomes.  The outcomes are equally tangible and intangible.
    • The common belief is that collaboration efforts reinforces that One Plus One is Greater Than just Two [1 + 1 > 2].
  5. Building Relationships Beyond Professionalism.
    • One of the most recognised Employee Engagement survey in the market is “Gallup.”  A question in their survey is: “Do you have a best friend at work?”
    • A team strives to thrive because they have strong relationships within the team.  They do not work for themselves; it is about working for the person next to them, and perhaps the entire team.
    • Most of the relationships extend beyond the confines of the physical office, and into their personal lives in a holistic manner.
    • Depending on the depth of the relationships, and all things being equal in terms of strengths and competencies, the team with the stronger relationship beyond the professional would have an indisputable upside!


Sourced in part: Carol E. Becker, Growth Design Corporation.

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