Your workgroup isn’t a real team. You’ve had a nagging feeling that this observation might be reality. However, you’ve kept your thoughts to yourself instead of sharing it with the group.
That’s one reason your workgroup is just that: a bunch of folks assigned to work on a project or sell for a regional sales manager or even run a company.
Your workgroup isn’t a real team. You are a subset of individuals employed by a company within a specific department or departments. Your common denominator is your place of employment. You haven’t taken the time to establish any other areas of common ground.
Your workgroup isn’t a real team. You come together at specific times to report – not share, discuss, evaluate or collaborate – on your individual progress, your piece of the project puzzle.
There’s no sense of throughput in those dynamics.
Your workgroup resembles the classrooms you walked into each year of school. Remember the feeling? You sought out any friends you made from the year before. Some of you weren’t looking forward to the chore of making new friends.
Your workgroup meetings are like starting all over again, each time you meet.
Real teams understand each other’s strengths, flaws and inherent nature. They respect what each other brings to the business table. That’s true collaboration.
Real teams are committed to supporting one another instead of competing with one another for time, attention, resources and personal gain.
Real teams hearts and minds function as one unit, even if there is disagreement.
Real teams are committed to getting to the finish line together.
Your workgroup isn’t a real team because each one of you isn’t prepared to lead when necessary and follow when necessary.
Your workgroup lacks efficiency and urgency. You are constantly embroiled in wrestling with each other’s – and your management’s – agendas.
There’s no teamwork in that tack.
Your workgroup isn’t a real team because you are more committed to individual goals than to doing what’s needed for the benefit of not only your team and company, but your customer as well.
This week, take a look around at the folks assembled for the various meetings and conference calls you attend.
How would you evaluate their dynamics? How would you rate the quality of the business outcomes produced?
What will it take to turn your workgroup into a living, breathing, highly-functioning team? My advice: start by sharing your observations and insights with one another. You will be surprised at where you all go, together.
There. You’ve all taken your first leadership steps.
Babette N. Ten Haken, President of Sales Aerobics for Engineers®, LLC, is a business coach and management consultant. Her Workshops create Team Playbooks for startups and small to mid-size companies who want to grow, expand and sustain their businesses, but wrestle with unpredictable revenue streams. Her Playbook on leadership, business development and collaboration strategies, including tools, Do YOU Mean Business? is available on Amazon.com.