One of the greatest challenges that faces team development is the process of creating shared responsibility of leadership. When every member of the team see themselves as equal then the expectations listed above will decrease.
However, there are many who say that they want to be a team member but are very willing to give the responsibility of the team away to someone else. Teamwork is all about sharing success, failure, and mutual responsibility.
In his book, the Power of Team Leadership, George Barna gives a report of a survey of over 1,000 adults who were asked what they expect from their leadership. The results of this survey can give team leaders an inside look at what people expect from leaders. Here are the responses:
- 87 percent expect leaders to motivate people to get involved in meaningful causes and activity
- 78 percent believe leaders should negotiate compromises and resolve conflicts when they arise
- 77 percent look to leaders to determine and convey the course of action that they should take in order to produce desirable conditions and outcomes
- 76 percent rely on leaders to identify and implement courses of action that are in the best interests of society, even if some of those choices are unpopular
- 75 percent expect leaders to invest their time and energy in training more leaders who will help bring the vision to reality
- 63 percent want leaders to communicate vision so that they know where thing their headed and what it will take to get there
- 61 percent say leaders are responsible for the direction and production of employees associated with the leader’s organization or cause
- 61 percent think leaders should analyze situations and create the strategies and plans that direct the resources of those who follow them
- 56 percent hold leaders responsible for managing the day-to-day details of the operation.
- How do you create shared responsibility in team leadership?
- What do you expect from leaders?
- What would you add?
Passion can be defined as “a strong feeling of enthusiasm or excitement for something or about doing something.” It refers to “a hunger, craving, thirst, appetite, desire, lust or urge for something.” All of these spirits, feelings, moods and emotional states must be fed or they starve and dry up. Passion is one emotion that requires fuel to be sustained.
There’s great rewards and power when taking small steps toward big goals. Avoid the tendency to minimize small steps because they don’t reach far enough. Furthermore, putting off small steps in the hope of finding that big step guarantees stagnation. Small steps make a big difference. Remember, big steps emerge while you’re taking small steps.
Passion in leadership is essential for effectiveness. No one can lead with any depth or clarity without passion. A series of successful small steps justifies investing more resources towards fueling passion.
- Accountability. Transform approval processes into reports. Provide accurate and accountable information to constituents and followers.
- Attitudes. Display enlightened attitudes about failure. Coach people how to fail forward. Never allow failure to be a final solution.
- Clarity. Create unmistakable clarity regarding short-term goals and long-term vision. Know where you want to go and determine how to effectively get there.
- Coach. Employ persistency in coaching people strategies for moving ideas forward. Make sure your team is trained and equipped to reach their maximum potential.
- Edify. Generously tell people the strengths you see in them in ways that excites their passions. Make people feel they’re an essential part of the team. Authorize people to try big things in small ways and then report the results to everyone.
- Positive. Exhibit positive attitudes. Be consistent with orientation toward the positive within the constraints of goals and vision.
- Respect. Develop authentic respect for the talents and gifts of every person connected to your team. People appreciate recognition of their abilities.
- Strategies. Improve strategic processes that eliminate unnecessary approvals. Plan your work and work your plan.
- Transparent. Be open, honest and completely transparent of whose working on what. Always be above-board with people and never secretive. Be genuine.
- What has drained your passion?
- What small steps will move your team or organization toward dynamic innovation?
- What would you add?
We spend our whole lives talking about teams. We encourage our kids at the early age of four or five to play t-ball, basketball, soccer, pewee football and a host of other team sports. From here our team association never ends. Schools have sports teams, math teams, and debate teams. We pick college and professional sports teams that we follow devotedly.
When we become leaders, we’re also become team oriented. Basically, a team is any group of people organized to work together interdependent and cooperatively to accomplish a purpose or a goal. A team can also be defined as a group of people with a full set of complementary skills capable of accomplishing any task, job, or project.
Healthy team members operate with a high degree of interdependence. They share authority and responsibility for self-management. Members are accountable for collective performance. They work toward a common goal and shared rewards.
A team I more than just a collection of people. A healthy team creates a strong sense of mutual commitment to build synergy. Synergy generates performance greater than the sum of the performance of its individual members.
Creating effective trams, prompting teamwork and team building is a challenge in every organization. Many environments tend to foster teams of rugged individuals working on personal goals for personal gain. However, certain principles are paramount in developing healthy teams to be consistently effective in achieving goals and setting priorities.
Principles for Developing Healthy Teams
- Relationships matter more than structure or systems.
- Everyone wants to be respected and valued.
- Good communication is paramount.
- Conflict can’t be avoided.
- Rally around and love a common interest.
- Attitude is usually more important than aptitude.
- Pull together when times are tough.
- When one wins we all win…let’s celebrate.
- Enjoying the process as a part of the plan.
- There are no minor roles.
- Which of these does your team most need to improve upon?
- How will you challenge your team to develop to be effective?
- What would you add?
The stated purpose of Amaxa Leadership (www.amaxaleadership.com) is “to coach and mentor leaders to reach their maximum potential.” “Amaxa” is the Greek word for “coach” or “carriage.” It was used in ancient times to describe an action of taking a person from one place to another. Amaxa Leadership can be described as “coaching leadership.” It’s a journey of taking from where you are in leadership to where you want to go. It’s the process of developing effective leaders.
Effective leaders do not seek a position. They have a mission to develop and sharpen into leaders reaching their maximum potential.
The most successful leaders who excel in effectiveness develop 4 traits.
- Coach/Mentor. Effective leaders surround themselves with other highly successful and motivated people. No one is an island. Being a lone ranger will never bring effectiveness as a leader. Become aware of most successful things that get done in the world involved more than one person. Through having a coach and mentor you’ll gain the confidence to reach your maximum potential.
- Persistent. Effective leaders are persistent. Nothing ever goes the way you want it to. People talk about overnight success, and that’s not the way it works. Leaders who come out on top are the ones who refuse to give up despite the inevitable trials and tribulations they face throughout the process. Refusing to give up will inevitably result in being effective.
- Team players. There’s no ‘I’ in team. Building a team is essential to being effective. To build the strongest team possible, look for people who excel in the areas where you’re weaker or less experienced. You’re going to need people who have complementary skills. No matter how talented you are, there are just going to be things that you don’t bring to the table. Building a team is essential.
- Vision. Finally, and arguably most importantly, effective leaders have a specific vision. They focus and pinpoint the exact problem that they’re trying to solve or overcome. Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg says, “If you want to build something great, you should focus on what the change is that you want to make in the world. I see too many entrepreneurs who decide that they want to start a company before they actually know what it is that they want to build. To me, that seems backwards.” No one moves forward in leadership without vision.
- How do you define effectiveness as a leader?
- What traits do you need to develop to be an effective leader?
- What would you add?
Granting people authority in leadership is imperative to their reaching maximum potential as a leader. The effectiveness of streamlining the decision-making process, empowering leaders to make decisions, and publicly supporting the decisions even if they’re askew promotes buoyancy and confidence.
Trust is paramount in developing and granting authority to leaders. Give ownership to people we trust to make the right decisions. Be available to coach and mentor people. Grant them power to make decisions and provide opportunities for reaping the consequences, good or bad. It’s how people learn.
Convey to people who if a less than ideal decision is made, they’ll still have your public support. Deal, as necessary with the consequences of the decision. However, do it behind closed doors. Never undermine the trust of a trusted leader publicly.
Any follower needs to feel the freedom to talk to their leaders about bad decisions. Always keep your door open. For the sake of unity, commit to open conversation and trust in each other’s public support. Critique without criticism.
A leader who knows that you will support them unconditionally will be both cautious in their decisions and will give you the benefit of the doubt in yours.
Encourage people to take definitive actions. Questions to coach people to consider are ….
- How long does it take to move on a need?
- Does it require a committee or team to meet, debate, and eventually rule on the need?
- Is there a person who is empowered to make a decision?
It’s a principle issue in today’s organizations when they lack ability to take definitive actions. This deficiency is greatly responsible for organizations being plateaued and/or in decline. Respond responsibly to shifts in our cultural surroundings. Empower people with the ability to make those shifts.
- How do you coach people to take definitive actions?
- What do you need to do encourage freedom in talking about bad decisions?
- What would you add?
My father was a brick mason. Most everything I learned about the masonry trade was from him on Saturdays and during summers. Dad taught me the important truth that a person must acquire certain skills in various trades before a profession can be perfected.
This truth reminds leaders of the need to exemplify basic character and professional traits to be credible. Leaders come in all kinds of shapes and sizes. There is no “one shoe fits all” description of a leader. However, there are qualities that must be in the DNA of every leader.
Here are a few of my favorite qualities that every leader needs to embody.
- Broad-minded. Seek out diversity. Be open to change and new ideas. Never accept the status quo.
- Competency. The utmost prerequisite of competency essential to any leader is high moral principles. Sound intellectual judgment as opposed to emotional outbursts is foundational as well.
- Courageous. Be determined to accomplish your goals regardless of the obstacles. Display a confident calmness when under stress.
- Fair-minded. Do unto others as you would have them do to you. Abhor prejudices as the enemy of justice. Be sensitive to the feelings, values, interests, and well-being of others.
- Forward-looking. Continually press toward achieving your ultimate goals. Prioritize from basic values what you want and how to get it.
- Honesty. Have integrity. Be genuine, sincere, and candor in all your actions. Deceptive behavior will not inspire trust.
- Imaginative. Be an out of the box thinker. Be creative, innovative, intuitive and inquisitive. Don’t get in a rut. A rut is a grave with both ends kicked out.
- Inspirational. Inspire others to reach for new heights. Be confident in all that you do. Display inspiration mentally, physically and spiritually.
- Intelligence. Expand your horizons intellectually. Read, study, and seek challenging opportunities. Always seek to go broader, deeper and higher than ever before.
- Straightforward. Cut to the chase. Be unwavering. Use sound judgment to make wise decisions with appropriate timing. Be true to yourself and not fickle.
- How many of these qualities do you have?
- What qualities do you need to work on?
- What additional qualities would you include in this list?
The challenge of leadership is never greater than when focusing on personal development. The need is to continually seek to improve, sharpen and increase our leadership skills. A leader’s effectiveness hinges on being faithful to this task.
Remember, your leadership is only as good as your ability to influence. Following prescribed principles of leadership will bring depth and width beyond your expectations.
Principles to Lead
- Conflict. Deal promptly with conflict. Never let it go unresolved in any circumstance or relationship or for any period of time.
- Faith. Take steps of faith faithfully. Have faith in things you hope for and believe in the evidence of things unseen. “Faith is to believe what we do not see, and the reward of this faith is to see what we believe.”_St. Augustine
- Listen. Learn to listen. Listening is an art. People will respect a leader who listens to them and allows them to voice their concerns.
- Openness. Be open to constructive criticism. Be willing to change when necessary. People can be a great source of information and ideas if they feel you will embrace their voice without them feeling threatened. Invite people to be open and honest with you.
- Passion. Pursue your passion and abilities fervently. Adhere to God’s leadership for your life. Use your natural gifts and talents.
- Perseverance. What you face in trials and temptations will not define you as a leader. How you react to them will. Run the race regardless of the obstacles.
- Selflessness. Don’t be self-centered. Allow your ideas to be challenged. Being a leader is not about you. It is about developing people with your influence.
- Value. Trust people who are following you. Value them. People are your best commodity. Without people you have no leadership.
- Vision. Dream big. Never apologize for your vision. Reach for the stars. It’s better to reach for the stars and never quite get here than it is to being satisfied with the status quo.
- Which of these principles do you identify with?
- How will you put these principles into practice?
- What would you add to this list?