“Individual commitment to a group effort–that is what makes a team work, a company work, a society work, a civilization work.” – Vince Lombardi
It’s frustrating for team leaders and members alike when assigned tasks are incomplete, deadlines missed, or neglected altogether. John C. Maxwell is famous for saying the “teamwork makes the dream work,” accountability makes the team work more effectively, so the dream works.
Regular Performance Checks
“A team is not a group of people that work together. A team is a group of people that trust each other.” – Simon Sinek
Welcoming regular performance checks is what I call “Positive Accountability” because it tracks our productivity and builds trust. A willingness to regularly review our performances is a vital part of teamwork. Regular performance checks engender trust, which leads to stability. The collaborative efforts of accountable team members communicate integrity to our clients.
The simplicity of collaborative efforts and mutual accountability is the driving force behind a culture of transparency. Everything works better when everyone knows what everyone else is doing and that it’s getting done right.
No team wins a championship without excellence in individual achievements contributing to the overall purpose of the organization. Everyone works diligently with their eye on the prize.
A Culture of Transparency
“None of us is as smart as all of us.” – Ken Blanchard
When we encourage regular performance checks, we gain the respect of our team. When we hold ourselves to a higher level of personal accountability, we gain self-respect that’s attractive and contagious. Wes Fessler says, “Dignity is the reward of holding oneself accountable to conscience.”
Accepting that our words and behaviors have consequences makes transparency an empowering experience for our team members and ourselves. Former NBA player and Head Coach Phil Jackson says, “The strength of the team is each individual member. The strength of each member is the team.” Over time, team members come to expect the best from one another knowing that everyone will be doing the right thing and doing that thing right.
Josh Guilar observes that “Transparency can make a team work better as a cohesive unit. Teams working together on a project tend to trust each other more when they are encouraged to know and understand what the whole team is doing.”
Cohesiveness Precedes Effectiveness
“Great things in business are never done by one person. They’re done by a team of people.” – Steve Jobs
Cari Cho, President, and CEO of Cornerstone Montgomery, says, “When I meet with new employees for the first time, I like to talk about communication and how it can be a challenge for all of us. Communication is the glue that holds an organization together and is how trust, respect, and engagement are built and sustained.” (1)
Knowing who’s responsible for specific tasks is an essential ingredient of consistent productivity. Clearly articulating what each person is responsible for keeps them accountable and everyone else updated.
Cohesion is achieved when each team member functions in their area of giftedness. Clarity of responsibilities among the members is a major factor with winning teams.
- They’re clear on the boundaries of their job description and spheres of influence.
- They’re conscientious, consistent and, diligent in what they do.
- They pursue personal excellence understanding its impact on the team.
Peter Drucker noted, “Organizations that are change leaders are designed for change. But people need continuity … they do not function well if the environment is not predictable, not understandable, not known.”
The following three questions adapted from our Master Operating System’s Glue section may help you. Cohesive teams produce more effective organizations.
- Do you consistently utilize agendas for all team meetings?
- Do you receive weekly division updates from each division leader?
- Do you create a weekly golden list for tasks that need to be completed for the upcoming week? (2)
“You need to be aware of what others are doing, applaud their efforts, acknowledge their successes, and encourage them in their pursuits. When we all help one another, everybody wins.” – Jim Stovall
* Photo by JSPJOURNAL.COM