The best teams aren’t just a random conglomeration of strong team members, just as a quality jewelry chain isn’t simply a bunch of precious metal strung together. Fine gold doesn’t gain any value if it’s soldered together without care, and the same is true for your work teams. Approaching team building with the right resources and level of consideration lets you increase the value of each member’s contribution and ensure a culture where everyone supports each other in a positive, productive manner. One way organizations can invest in their teams is via customized team development training.
To build up a team, you first have to discover that team’s most glaring pain points. The Five Dysfunctions of a Team by Patrick Lencioni outlines the following:
Each dysfunction forms a pillar supporting the team as a whole; even one weak column increases the threat of collapse. High-performing teams aren’t necessarily perfect and rarely (if ever) are all five dysfunctions permanently banished. Instead, team members are constantly asking questions, re-evaluating their individual roles and interpersonal skills, and addressing any changes that need to be made.
Our leadership team development experts turn training retreats into launching pads, igniting long-term discussions that create enduring and positive change. Patterns shift, attitudes evolve, and groups acquire a deep understanding of where they are so they can consciously influence where it is they want to go.
Former professional basketball player Phil Jackson once said, "The strength of the team is each individual member. The strength of each member is the team." That quote says everything about the importance of working together and developing trust — each team member is weakened if the group isn't cohesive and working toward common goals. The team as a unit is strengthened when everyone communicates, works together and applies their unique talents and skills in logical, cooperative ways.
Louisa May Alcott, author of the classic book Little Women puts it even more succinctly. She says, "It takes two flints to make a fire." Organizations that want to light a fire within work groups must bring the right people together and help them understand how to strike against each other in positive ways to create the right flames.
On the flip side of dysfunction, you’ll find both power and purpose — two things our team training initiatives are designed to achieve. The heart of that journey is an assessment-based learning experience called
The Five Behaviors of a Cohesive Team.
This model turns the dysfunctions above on their heads, reintroducing those pain points into tools.
By learning about each team member and educating them on their own key behavioral characteristics — powered by Everything DiSC® or AllTypes (MBTI)— we begin to break down each group into its most elemental components so we can better structure a more capable and vigorous whole. You’ll discover more about yourself than you thought possible as you watch your own processes improve, but the real magic is in witnessing how each individual’s attributes gradually interlock with their teammates’.
How Well Does Everyone Know Each Other?
Even the most awkward first dates get a run for their money when new coworkers are suddenly thrust onto a project together. The lack of a clear leader, being unfamiliar with each other's working styles, clashing approaches to problem-solving and fear-induced timidity can all contribute to discomfort and substandard progress. You're unlikely to jump into the deep-end of discussion over introductory cocktails, and you need a similar “getting to know you” period in professional environments. Simply learning about teammates' perceived strengths and weaknesses, work histories and even hobbies breaks the ice and gives everyone equal footing and an equal voice from the outset.
Is Your Structure Lopsided?
You've got a good view from your managerial perch. Use it to survey your team and see whether certain parties are pulling more weight than others. Weak links aren't necessarily a cause for expulsion but rather an opportunity to redistribute tasks or probe the source of subpar performance to see whether there aren't more deep-seated issues threatening your team's foundation. Take note of sagging morale and consistent complaints either originating from or directed at particular team members; these red flags are open doors allowing you to address problems before they hit critical mass.
Would Your Team Benefit From a Change in Perspective?
Sometimes, the best thing you can do for your group is to shake up the routine. Sending everyone on a company retreat can be helpful in some instances, but often, the same problems arise once everyone is back in familiar territory, rededicated to the same tasks and without a new structure in place to prevent backsliding. Turnkey Coaching & Development Solutions defies the odds and helps new habits take root by getting to the heart of what makes each team special. Rather than offering one-time events or a remote classroom setting where you send managers for a day or a week, our programs are customized to the hilt, taking each client's needs, goals and supervisory structure into account. Your experiences and ambitions help shape who you are, and they should help shape your work team training too.
What Is the Collective Goal?
Answer this question yourself, and then pose it to each team member individually. If the responses don't match, you've identified a major obstacle. Often, our focus is on the next milestone, and we can't see the forest for the trees. We work at capacity (or beyond) to meet an immediate deadline without much thought as to where we're ultimately going and certainly not how we're going to get there. Collaborative endeavors only prevail if everyone's efforts are in sync. Think of a rowboat: If there are four oars pulling in different directions, you'll never get anywhere. Confusion over team objectives is a symptom of more widespread miscommunication, and you're bound to see more evidence the closer you look.
Many experts refer to team building as one of the most important investments you can make. Improving team cohesion and function means making better decisions based on aggregate input, wasting less time, and, perhaps most importantly, boosting your bottom line. Whether you’re a nonprofit or a Fortune 500 company, success can be quantified and a high-functioning team creates superior outcomes.
Speaking of quantifying results: every group that completes the Five Behaviors assessment is eligible for a Progress Report six to 12 months later. This serves to reinforce the idea that change is not a single step forward but rather a treadmill — you’re never truly “there,” but you can increase your endurance, lengthen your stride, and teach your body to work more efficiently and effectively so you’re in a position to re-imagine your goal into something even bigger and better.
Turnkey Coaching & Development Solutions designs training and employee development programs for leadership teams, work teams and cross-functional teams. Our curriculum uses research backed building blocks and then is custom-built for each client’s unique needs, goals, and team makeup. We create a one-of-a-kind “adult-learning” environment and agenda that’s tailor-made and remarkably effective. Most companies come to us with between 10 and 30 employees at time, allowing for targeted training that compels progress.
We have two programs:
Single-Day Team Development Training
Provides an intense overview of what high-performing teams must learn to outperform their competitors and fulfill their goals. When your team only has a single day to give to the goal of effective teamwork, this is the program that can change the course in a snap.
Team Development for Lasting Change Program
This is not a quick "day program" or a cookie-cutter seminar that repeats word for word from city to city. Instead, we offer a laser-focused approach that uses the best practices in leadership development and work team development to help your team not only create but sustain results.
Turnkey Coaching & Development Solutions has programs across the United States, centered in all major metropolitan areas. Dates and times are set according to your needs, reflecting our adherence to client-centric systems. You’re not sending your leaders to participate in a managerial meet-and-greet or to learn skills that only hold unilateral benefits. This is coordinated learning founded on well-respected principles molded to fit your team’s makeup, and it truly works.
The constituent parts of anything — a vehicle, recipe or composition — determine its efficiency and success. Some components have major operational roles while others perform smaller essential tasks, but every element counts, and all of them require regular maintenance. The same rules apply within businesses. When you provide your work teams and cross-functional teams with well-planned team development courses, you nurture individual professional growth and increase company prosperity in general.
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