Recently a client asked me, how do you gain alignment on your team when your leaders don’t play together nicely. I pursued what she meant by this. Turns out her team meetings are not as productive as they could be. Team members talk over one other. There’s not much interaction. At the end of the meeting, it’s not always clear what decisions were made or who was accountable for actions coming out of the meeting. People are in a hurry to leave the meeting.
These are symptoms of poor team health. Before undertaking a large enterprise wide change, this team needs to learn how to work together more effectively. When I dig into the reasons why they don’t, I find that team members don’t necessarily trust each other, they are not willing to challenge each other, and there is a lack of commitment and accountability.
Organizational trust – the ability to trust one another in a team setting – comes from a leader’s ability to “be real,” to explain why they make decisions the way they do, and from being vulnerable. We don’t often discuss vulnerability in a corporate setting – yet it is perhaps one of the most valuable traits as a leader. When you practice vulnerability, you open yourself up to criticism. You give permission to others to challenge your ideas and suggest different approaches. When your leadership team practices vulnerability, you have richer, more robust discussions in your team meetings. There is greater commitment and more accountability.
Vulnerability is not developed overnight. It takes practice. Being able to authentically say things like, “I’m sorry,” “You’re better at that than I am,” or “That’s a better idea than mine,” are examples of language that reflect vulnerable behavior. The leader must consistently model the behavior, and identify why her team is and is not doing the same. This requires courage on the leader’s part to change the status quo, and not to fall back into old ways.
My Accelerate workshop helps you develop the kind of leadership team described above. If you have a leadership team that you know can increase its performance, and you want to achieve greater results, this program is for you. Strong leadership is crucial to remain competitive, and you need to know your next team will exceed your goals. Through Accelerate you’ll learn how to build and sustain your leadership team to fuel the growth of your firm and to propel your personal leadership success.
Dedicated to your profitable transformation,