April 10, 2024

Corporate CPR Episode 116: How Not Focusing on Teams Might be Killing Your Company

On today’s episode we are talking about how not focusing on great teams might be killing your company.

James Scouller, an executive coach, thought leader, and author, has dedicated 45 years to leadership. His four books reflect his profound focus on the psychological challenges confronting leaders and teams. The Three Levels of Leadership, his debut, revolutionized leadership literature with groundbreaking models and tools. Despite minimal promotion, it garnered global acclaim, inspiring countless CEOs. His latest trilogy, How To Build Winning Teams Again And Again, released in January 2024, serves as a companion to his first work. With a rich background in international leadership and coaching, Scouller continues to empower leaders and teams, embodying expertise in psychology and martial arts.

Episode Highlights:

  • Commitment is Key: Teams need to address the psychological aspect of commitment before diving into trust and psychological safety. Without a shared commitment to the team’s goals, dynamics can quickly unravel.
  • Balanced Team Composition: Building effective teams requires more than just assembling individuals based on job titles or regional expertise. Teams must ensure they have a diverse mix of behavioral roles to cover problem-solving, planning, conflict resolution, and other essential functions.
  • Clarity in Decision-Making: Successful teams establish clear processes for decision-making to avoid ambiguity and ensure alignment. Whether through discussion-based consensus or democratic voting, defining decision-making mechanisms helps teams stay focused and accountable to their goals.
  • Conflict is Necessary for Growth: While conflict within teams is often seen as negative, it’s essential for healthy team dynamics. Task conflict, where ideas are debated constructively, is a sign of a good team. However, many teams struggle with conflict avoidance, which can lead to passive aggression and hinder creativity.
  • Understanding Individual Dynamics: Teams are comprised of individuals with unique motivations, fears, and life experiences. Effective leaders need to understand what makes each team member tick and foster an environment where individuals feel valued and understood. This personal connection is crucial for building strong teams.
  • Seven Action Principles for Team Success: James shared seven action principles for achieving team success. These principles provide a roadmap for addressing key psychological issues within teams and improving overall effectiveness.

Top 3 Takeaways for the Audience:

  1. Whether you’re struggling with team building or simply want to improve, it’s important to recognize that the art of building and regenerating teams is learnable. With effort and practice, anyone can develop the skills necessary to build effective teams.
  2. While improving team dynamics requires dedication and practice, the effort invested in developing these skills will ultimately pay off. Not only will you enjoy your work more, but your teammates will also benefit, and your company will see better results because of improved team dynamics.
  3. To support your journey in mastering team building, there are resources available, such as books and tools, that can provide guidance and insights. By leveraging these resources, you can gain valuable knowledge and techniques to enhance your team leadership abilities.

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