7C’s of A Great Team

Great successes always came through a great leader and a great team. No one succeeded alone. It may start with a dream of an individual visionary, but only a vision would never celebrated until a team executed that dream with passion and consistency.

A great team doesn’t necessarily mean a combination of great peoples. It is a space within human interactions where ordinary people can become extraordinary and deliver great results. Within a team, the future unfolds like trees come out from a small seed.

Sometimes we become clueless about the failures and mediocre performances even when the individuals are highly capable within a team.

In a team, the individual’s role, values, and skills are to be evaluated and matched with the dynamics of the ream.

1. Clarity– Clarity of purpose is fundamental for a team’s very existence; without this, a team will fall in the mediocrity trap. Attention to results will be diluted, and it will lack congruence. Clarity is what we expect from the leader of a team. Without clarity of vision and purpose, a team lacks direction and a pathway to greatness. Within a team, every individual will need role clarity to create an impact of their own. This is the single point of failure of a great team. Lack of role clarity leads to chaos and unaccountability. Without knowing the Core and Culture, it’s complicated to establish a shared vision, a real big audacious goal, sometimes we are getting stuck in a big audacious reality. Clarity comes from bringing our vision into reality by putting our core competency into action.

2. Challenge – Without challenge, a team doesn’t get the boost to dive in with full force. A halfhearted journey ends nowhere. Complain and challenge are not the same; challenges that ask for higher standards, which pushes a team to step outside the comfort zone. It requires more discipline, more energy, more focus, and more courage to take those challenges with an open mind. Sometimes to achieve harmony, teams are not encouraged to challenge each other. Thus false harmony leads to mediocrity. The team leader’s role will require to raise the bar of expectations continuously, just not to settle.

3. Class– Excellence in everything represents a class and a class A act sets a higher standard which connects the goal, reality, challenge, and execution. The pursuit of excellence is the intrinsic motivation to put to work for the flourishing of the full potentials. In this connected world, world-class is the new norm. And why not? While the world is predicting a useless class, it’s better to be more cautious about our class of action. Teams with the greater class of action will prevail, and poor teams will perish.

4. Connection – This is one of the fundamental human needs that we all want to connect and share the joy to express our love with one another. When a team lacks the joy of connection, it falls into mediocrity.

5. Compounding– This world has taught us the magic of compounding, which is more individualistic and less humanistic. Here compounding is meant to expand the possibilities of our human potentials. Sometimes a little appreciation does that. An appreciative mindset opens the door of abundance, and a discounting mind closes the door and pushes towards artificial scarcity.

6. Contribution– contribution is the higher purpose that creates the meaning of togetherness. It’s everyone’s unique contribution that fits together and becomes greater than some of all its parts. Contribution brings synergy and power of many in a team. The great team set a norm of contribution for everyone, as team member everyone’s sole responsibility becomes to enable each other to contribute, everyone gets a major share of his or her own contribution and a small share in all others contribution thus everyone delivers larger than their own individual best contribution.

7. Compassion – In this unforgiving world, compassion is the fluid that gets things going in a difficult time. The need to help each other in times of need fuels the future of working together and grow together. In this interdependent world, compassion is the key to feel safe from the exploitation of evil spirits. Compassion is the promise for safety and care; it works like shock absorbers on a bumpy road along the way we travel to achieve our goals.

Many understand the importance of the team, which is a good thing. They still fail to deliver results because of their misinterpretation about how a team really works and what it means to be a great team. They think fun and adventures are the most important elements of a team, and they often go out for lunch together, they play together and take a group selfie and assume that they have done enough to build a great team. Often they hide their scarcity mindset or win-lose mindset and try to show off to the world about how good team they are. Their lack of growth and unwillingness to hold a shared value ultimately deliver poor results and unable to building trust among others.

Assessing Your Team:

Do you know about your team? Are they ready to take the next leap? Or they are tired of changes, one after another? Do not forget someone is always moving the target; it’s not in your hand. Of course, you can choose not to change and move forward if you can handle the consequences.

Ask the following questions and score your team.

  1. Clarity question – Do my team knows their top three goals?

  2. Challenge question – Do my team appreciate new challenges?

  3. Class question – Do my team pursue a world-class goal?

  4. Connection question – Do my team connected with enough bandwidth?

  5. Compounding question – Do everyone in the team appreciates each other’s contribution?

  6. Contribution question – Do my team value contribution over entitlements?

  7. Compassion question – Do every individual are ready to sacrifice individual perspectives over team goal achievement and help each other? Do they value the difference between them?

Simply by asking these questions, you will be able to understand the strength of your team?

Team Building Tips:

  1. Whenever you get an opportunity, involve a team, and put someone in charge, grow leaders within a team, one at a time.

  2. Learning together creates a lifelong team; that’s why we are so close to our mates in school, college, and university. Put the team in a learning environment.

  3. Traveling together is another way to know each other. Pair up individuals who need to work together closely.

  4. Breakdown the organizational goals in activities and club together all objectives, tasks, and initiatives under a theme and assign a team to deliver the result. That will bid the team together, leadership will be tested, and followership will be optimized.

  5. Get a profile of every team member (i.e., DISC) and put them in a team; it will help to leverage the diverse perspective and different skills.

  6. Make sure team achievements are encouraged and rewarded more than individual achievements. What gets rewarded gets repeated.

  7. Don’t allow any team to be left alone without a leader; make someone in charge.

  8. A functional relationship culture will best suit for team culture in place of hierarchical relationships. The purpose will get more priority than the seniority in ranks. The result will do the talking in place of how or who did this.

  9. Hire people for the attitude of a team player, contributory mindset, and pay for both individual and team performance and let the ream setting become the field test for future leaders.

  10. Eliminate the negativity with a sense of urgency and zero tolerance. Put all negativity in a silo so that negativity doesn’t impact the whole organization.

  11. Put individual contributors in a specialist role and let them not destroy the core essence of a team.

  12. Superheroes may want to go solo, nothing wrong with that, let them know leadership falls out of scope for a solo superhero.

  13. Let the perfectionist not slow down the pace of a team, put them in planning rather than execution, and let them work with a timeline.

  14. Let your people play, have fun, and be competitive with a conscience.

  15. Make sure no one falls in a no man’s land, rescue them, and put them in a role as soon as possible.

No team can be a team without a leader, a selfless individual who finds fulfillment in serving others by influencing without conscious effort from both sides. Every individual potential is balanced by leading and following, and we have to be courageous to lead and sincere to follow. Leaders follow the leader of leaders and the core values of the organization. Thus both leadership and followership are fundamental for a team.

When it comes to an organization, it’s not only a great team; it’s a team of teams that make the difference, and that what makes the team great.

Do we really need to understand oxygen and hydrogen to make the best use of water or quenching our thrust? That gives the perspective of a team. In a team, individuals lose their individuality and deliver a purposeful result.

The ultimate greatness will come from becoming great with great performance, sustain that greatness in times of turbulence, and leveraging it when it is the right time to flourish.

The team that works very hard:

Sometime you will find a team where everyone works very hard and still struggle to deliver the desired result. You talk to every individual, everyone will explain about their own effort, and how hard they are trying, they will speak about the change initiatives that have taken place in the past few years, and nothing has worked, Often these teams lack class, contribution, and compassion. Because they try to hold on to their previous class, they focus more on capitalizing past contributions when the organization is desperately seeking something in the present and future; they clack compassion for the new generation and new talents from outside, they alienate the new future-oriented perspectives. Their handwork and high commitment to their old way of doing things fail to deliver the result. More often, new initiatives and best practices also fail as they fall in a land of “100% surety,” where nothing is accepted until it is 100% sure. That’s not how innovation and disruption have taken place.

Every team must have a leader. Leaders manage roles clarity and march forth to achieve the shared vision, led by example; leader encourages by being vulnerable and open-minded to challenge each other. Everyone appreciates each other’s contribution by being compassionate, committed towards a world-class service, and a big hairy audacious goal that connects with the very purpose of the organization.

Great team with high commitment delivers high performance, it’s the core, and the core has to be nourished, maintained, and put into action.

 About The Author

Munshi Abdul Alim

M.Com, MBA. FCMA

Executive Director, Business Transformation

Akij Foods and Beverage Limited.

Contributor, The InCAP

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