Most people in the work force don’t feel like they are part of a team. They feel like employees. ON the other hand, many leaders view themselves as team leaders and team players. Consequently, leaders are often confused when employees don’t function like a team.
Hiring a staff is not the same as developing a team. Team requires something beyond a job description, office products, and a paycheck. For those content to manage the status quo, employees will do.
But for the leader who is consumed by the desire to move the needle in his or her sphere of influence, team is an absolute necessity. Here’s why:
Synergy – when a combination of elements produces an effect greater than the sum of the individual elements.
To Create High-Performance Teams
I. Select performance-oriented people and positions them for maximum impact.
A. Recruit doers, not thinkers.
You need thinkers, but not to work on a team. You need the innovating happening on the margins, at the edges, not in the middle of your organization. Jesus recruited doers to run his Church in Jerusalem. And Paul to take the Gospel everywhere else and innovate how it would change the Gentile world.
B. It’s much easier to educate a doer than it is to activate a thinker.
“If you have the right people on the bus, the problem of how to motivate and manage people largely goes away. The right people don’t need to be tightly managed or fired up. Great vision without great people is irrelevant. — Jim Collins, Good to Great
C. Position individuals for maximum impact.
1. Put peopl where they can make the greatest contribution
In this case, the Org Chart is your enemy. Use the Pharaoh Principle: Pharaoh bypassed the Org Chart and hired Joseph to manage the famine preparation.
Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid. — Albert Einstein
2. Connect the Dots
Question: Do team members feel interdependent? Do they understand how what they do impacts what others do?
II. Clarify the “What” and the “Why”
The “win” must be controllable. For a worship gathering, it can’t be “to have people accept Jesus,” because that’s not up to us.
If we don’t clarify the win, our participants will create one. But people will let go of what they know if we offer them something better.
A clear, common, compelling task that is important to the individual team members is the single biggest factor in team success. — Pat Macmillan, The Performance Factor
B. Teams dissolve when all the problems are solved.
C. Organize to the “What”
1. Create an organization where the lion’s share of time and resources are allocated to the “What”
2. Don’t force people to “work around” the organization. Some questions:
- What is the problem your team has come together to solve?
- What is the task your team has come together to accomplish?
- What is the opportunity your team has come together to leverage?
- What is the what around which everything should be organized?
3. Create terminology around “Why”
- Why is where the team finds its inspiration.
- Why addresses the issue of “What’s at stake?”
III. Orchestrate and Evaluate Everything
A. Orchestrate: “This is how we do it here… until further notified.”
- Orchestration brings consistency and predictability to all your processes and environments.
- This will actually make your organization feel more, not less personal.
- You already do this in some areas.
Orchestration is the elimination of discretion or choice at the operating level of your business. — Michael Gerber, The E-Myth Revisited
B. Evaluate Everything
1. Evaluate formally and systematically
- With the people involved
- As often as an even occurs
2. Create a feedback loop that keeps you close to critical events
- Growth distances leaders from the events that matter most.
- Without these processes, you rely on numbers only. And especially in the Church, numbers never tell the whole story.
- Information is often filtered as it makes its way up the Org Chart