Hi meaningful leader,
Thanks for stopping by, it’s always great to see you!
I hope your week is going well, don’t forget to refresh your goals for the week and make sure you highlight the ones that MUST be completed by Friday. Time management is all about prioritization!
Starting in a new role or a new company can be both exciting and scary. Particularly for an introvert like myself, getting to meet new people, can take a toll. But as leaders, mastering the art of creating bonds with the members of our team is paramount for success. So with you in mind, for today I want to share with you a very straight forward framework that I use when it comes down to building a new team.
Let’s start with the premise that:
Keeping this in mind, the most important set of skills we need to focus on, when building a team is our human skills (remember, there’s nothing soft about dealing with other human beings, so “soft skills” is a term you’ll NEVER hear me use), team building boils down to:
1.- Building trust
2.- Building Mutual Respect
3.- Building a Common Ground
Simple, right? Let’s unpack each, shall we?
Trust is a tricky thing….it takes a long time to develop and just in a quick moment it can be destroyed. So I have a framework for this one too, as it can become tricky if not approach correctly.
1.- Be Authentic: Every single person we encounter has certain level of apprehension towards other people’s agendas, so authenticity support us with the task of removing protective barriers. We want the team to let us in and eventually to allow our leadership to influence them.
Our team members want to know who we are and what we stand for. They wonder what is that we are going to bring to the table…are we going to make their lives better, or more complex? are we difficult to deal with, or are we approachable? but most importantly, every single person on your team, wants to know how much you care about them.
2.- Add Value to Others (consistently): As leaders, we are not in the business of what can I get for myself, we are in the business of building others up. So get use to giving with open hands, bet on others, and invest in them every single day. Remember, our goal is to create other leaders, and leaders are born out of nature and nurture, and we, as their leaders, have the ability to influence both.
One question that I ask myself every morning and that has serve me as the catalyst to perform at a higher level is: how can I add value today?
3.- Follow Through with your Commitments: Trust is build on credibility, and credibility is build on very minuscule actions we take each day. Let’s say that you are struggling with a particular issue and after you shared this with me, I promised to connect you with a friend of mine who can guide or share a link to an article I read that can shed some light on this issue for you, but then when I get back to my office, I get busy and I completely forget?
Not following through with the things we said we were going to do, significantly reduces our creditability and the ability of others to trust us, not to mention the impact it has on our self confidence, but that’s for another article.
BUILDING MUTUAL RESPECT:
In my upcoming book, I discuss this at length in a section titled “Conflict as a Catalyst for Diversity”, but I’ll share the gist of it here to help illustrate my point.
Strong players will always have a strong stance. High performing teams thrive not only because of the diversity found in the wide variety of skills and knowledge captured within its members, which of course promotes efficiency and high productivity. These teams are also diverse in ideas, convictions, motivations and values; and as their main objective is the success of the operation, they are not afraid to challenge each other or challenge their leader, if and when this is required. Without conflict there cannot be trust.
Disagreements pop up all the time, even within highly functioning teams, but the key is to keep mutual respect front and center. Not only it preserves the relationship you have with the person you are in disagreement with, but it also gives a clear message to the rest of the team that a) their voice and opinions matter and b) there will be no retaliation for speaking up.
BUILDING A COMMON GROUND:
Not because we are leaders, we have stop being humans. In the most basic form, we were created to crave community, and community is born on common ground and common values.
Yes, at work we must focus on reaching the common objectives and meeting our KPIs, but relationships are build on the things we have in common with each other. It can be a common hobby, like fishing or art. Books we like, rock band we love, our kids ages or activities, our background, etc. Learning to connect with others in a relatable and meaningful way, sets high performing leaders apart from the rest. When a common ground is built, loyalty starts to form.
Team building is above all an ongoing activity we must engage in. It never ever happens by accident, it has to be intentional and we must dedicate our time and attention to it. Never forget that teams can smell BS a mile away, so keep it real!
This past week, I created a video on my YouTube channel sharing this principles, check it out and please share with others. Always keep in mind that it takes less than a minute to share this content and it can be a huge help for someone you know.
Thank you again for stopping by, it means the world to me. I hope you found this valuable and if there’s a specific leadership topic you’ll like to talk about, please let me know, I’d love to hear from you.
Next week I’ll discuss all about building self-confidence, so if you haven’t yet, please subscribe here and get this content straight in your inbox every single Tuesday. I promise, I don’t spam!
Have an awesome rest of the week and God bless,