I’ve been a fan of Dr. Stephen R. Covey for a long time. In his book, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, Covey provides astute observations about how people perceive their worlds differently. Because we all view the world with our own unique filters, I thought I’d take a moment to offer my take on building highly effective teams. Please filter my observations through your own individual “lenses” to determine if anything rings true to you.
Habit No. 1: Hold regularly scheduled & topically fresh structured meetings.
In an age of email, Skype and Twitter, nothing builds teams as effectively as straightforward two-way voice communications. Effective communication is not something that “just happens” on its own accord. High-performance teams are fueled by regularly scheduled and topically fresh well-structured meetings.
Habit No. 2: Train to retain talented team members.
One team member’s strength is another’s weakness. When you combine the two you effectively train to retain talented team members that are all invested in your collective success.
Habit No. 3 Don’t expect change if you don’t ask for it.
You cannot sit on the sidelines waiting to be picked to lead a project. If you want to be a player you have to get into the game. Collect your thoughts, make a pitch and work with others to set the game in motion. Change starts within you.
Habit No. 4 Align individual goals with departmental goals with corporate goals.
Flow goals cosnsistently up, down sideways through the entire organization in order to help each individual team member achieve their desired results.
Habit No. 5 Set realistic objectives.
It’s okay to shoot for the moon once in a while but it’s a good idea to shoot for something a little closer to home most of the time.
Habit No. 5 Seek balance in all you do.
Work hard. Play hard. Rest hard? Not exactly. But you get the idea. You need to fuel your soul to feed your mind and body if you are going to earn the right to be a member of a highly effective team.
Habit No. 6 Be ready for the results.
Widely publish both the positive and negative results of any project. Figure out how to duplicate successes and determine how to avoid repeating failures in order to grow together as a team.
Habit No. 7 Take advantage of technology
Just don’t let it do your thinking for you.