www.ExcelGroupWorks.com/enoteq106.htm   Volume0106 


"Coming together is a beginning.
Keeping together is progress.
Working together is success." 
- Henry Ford





"Teamwork is the ability to work together toward a common vision. The ability to direct individual accomplishments toward organizational objectives. It is the fuel that allows common people to attain uncommon results.” 
Andrew Carnegie




Performance Solutions for Organizational 
 and Management Effectiveness  






"Leadership is the ability to get extraordinary achievement from ordinary people."
 - Brian Tracy 





Some previous enotes

"Help Coach-Managers Refuse the Monkey"

5 Steps to Leadership Renewal

Top 10 Tips for Managers to Coach Effectively  (read more)




Take a close look at teams and you'll see that some function well, some just function, while others fail. How is your team doing ? Below, you'll see 4 Failure Factors that challenge teams.

Also, don't miss our next Excel enote, 
The 7 Habits of Collaborative Coaches by Chuck Reynolds, our Chief Performance Officer

Best Regards, 
Excel Group Client Services


Team Effectiveness and Teambuilding by Chuck Reynolds

4 Failure Factors Challenging Team Effectiveness

Frequently, organizations contact us to ask…”Do you do anything for Teambuilding?”

What they’re referring to is, although they already have a team (recently formed or otherwise),  the team is often not performing as effectively as it could. In some cases it may be downright “failing” with increasing negative impact on performance. Have you ever experienced this? So, while people may ask for help “creating or building the team” they really need help to “build team effectiveness” within a pre-existing group.

4 Failure Factors  that Challenge Team Effectiveness

Failure Factor #1Lack of clarity of unified purpose. 

Are all people on the same page with respect to goal and role clarity? If you were to ask each person to email you the top 3 priorities of the team, how congruent would they be? Team effectiveness requires group and individual clarity. My friend Brian Tracy says that with respect to goals (team or individual) there are 3 steps for the starting point: Clarity, Clarity and Clarity. Ensure clarity of purpose to enhance engagement. Think end result and metrics.

Failure Factor # 2Non productive conflict.

The healthy expression of different viewpoints is important for team productivity and innovative output. Too often, however, the challenge a team faces is conflict arising from different behavioral styles or interests (often referred to as personality clashes)  and the lack of understanding of how to optimize style differences as team strengths. Realizing this common failure, many experienced  managers/team leaders engage the group in using a pyscometric survey as part of a “team communication process”. As part of this process each team member will complete a behavioral style survey, and will receive an individual personal profile. The group will then get together off site for a half day or a day to process the results collectively, to enhance team understanding and participate in some team exercises. Often this has more sustainable impact than just "fun team exercises”  - including the outdoor experiential type.

Failure Factor # 3 Lack of follow up or regular communication.

For some teams, the lack of a follow up structure is very problematic. While some people demonstrate a strong capacity to remain focused on their own without follow up and regular communication, initial levels of commitment can be undermined over time. This is often the case when the team is geographically dispersed, and may be exacerbated when some work in very remote areas without colleagues, or even work from home. When team projects are underway, effective teams build in regular checkpoints for accountability. Having team members in different locations use technology such as web meetings and team webinars can be very productive.

Failure Factor # 4- Lack of Trust

Though most agree that this is significant in a team, they often have a challenge describing it and the associated behaviors that build and reduce trust. The importance of Trust is often more significant, and can also be more complex, than it appears. Studies indicate that the higher the level of trust in a team or organizational culture, the more open communication as well as innovation. When the trust level is low, communication, open sharing and innovation is diminished. What are some trust builders? According to Stephen Covey, trust is built up or diminished over time. You may be aware that he refers to the emotional bank account concept. He further indicates that it’s the small consistent behaviors that one engages in that can build or destroy trust. Do you listen fully without interrupting?  Do you keep promises (big and small)? Are you punctual? Do you say what you really think? For successful entrepreneurs, Covey says this is crucial to teamwork



















Want to Achieve More this year?

I trust this note finds you well.  How has the first month of your new year been? (If celebrating the Chinese New Year - Gung Hey Fat Choy) I don’t know about you, but I’ve often disliked the sluggish feeling after the holiday celebration. With a demanding schedule of travel, and corporate lunches/parties, this year I made a decision to do things a little differently. I determined in November that I wanted to challenge myself and regain a higher fitness and energy level for 2006, possibly training for another marathon. In December I was careful not to overeat and when I traveled, I ensured that all my hotels had good gyms for workouts. This year on New Years morning I was to go out for a run with a partner, but since the weather wasn’t the greatest, she decided to join me at my gym (thanks, Dunfield Club!) since hers opened later. We arrived at 7:45am  and were able to get in (though it didn’t open until 8). The place was so dead, we had all 4 floors to ourselves along with 3 other people. A week later, I missed one morning workout and went in the evening. As in every January and February it was way too busy with all the resolution folks!  

How has your year started ? By maintaining my start to the year, I’ve been able to bring a superior energy to various goals we have ahead of us as well as handling some urgent personal goals. We’re off to a great start with new innovations to be launched, but the bad news is….I need some new clothes as I’ve dropped some inches off my waist again. When leading others, we lead ourselves first. May the rest of the year be a great one for you personally and professionally.  May you make take time to build your physical health/energy to support your achievement in all the other important areas of your life.

As I often like to ask... On a scale of 1 to 5, how are you doing in these areas?
Regular exercise (walk, swim, run, bike, etc.)
Healthy Diet ("you become what you eat"), and
Rest and Rejuvenation (Stephen Covey's Sharpening the Saw concept).

If you will commit to addressing these areas in the next 21 days, you will be amazed at your increased energy levels.  What will you commit to doing to enhance your energy level? Your team depends on it. Go for it. email me
In the Spirit of Growth

Chuck  Reynolds is a Principal and Chief Performance Officer with Excel Group Development, a Performance Solutions firm that assists organizations in enhancing management and team  effectiveness. He can be reached indirectly  by emailing our admin group. Insert 'ATTN Chuck' in the subject area. Visit them at www.ExcelGroupWorks.com 

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