Great Teams Foster These Five Behaviors – Do You?

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One of the biggest complaints that I have addressed in the workplace during the past 28 years is that people do not feel safe speaking up and trusting others. They hide their true selves and feelings from others for fear of being ridiculed or ostracized. Many employees report that they have been victims of workplace bullying, mismanagement and gossip. What is your biggest team complaint? Are you part of the problem or part of the solution?

Workplace Issues?

Statistics show that unhealthy work conflict, combined with lack of trust and transparency cost businesses lost time, money and productivity. A survey conducted by CCP Inc. found that U.S. employees spent 2.8 hours per week dealing with conflict. This amounts to approximately $359 billion in paid hours or the equivalent of 385 million working hours. Conflict in the workplace amounts to time and money spent not helping customers, filling orders or doing the job employees were hired to do. These factors all lead to a weak workplace culture with low growth potential. What is this costing your organization?

Last year, I had a client share that her culture does not allow her to look weak in any way so she continued to muster strength at work and at home even though a big part of her was afraid to fail and show any weakness to others. Our work together has been around the first behavior of trusting herself and being vulnerable to make mistakes; once you can demonstrate that behavior for yourself then you grant that permission to others.

There is another way. I call it the path least traveled because many avoid the journey that takes both courage and willingness to look one’s self in the mirror. Choosing to walk the path involves building trust and vulnerability within yourself and your team. Going this direction also reaps the most internal and external rewards. One CEO that I have worked with shared, “It is about getting comfortable being uncomfortable.” It is about allowing more of yourself to be seen by others. These human condition skills around trust and vulnerability can be applied in every domain in life: senior team alignment, project teams, boards, co-workers, spouses, partners, and friends and family.

This year, TEAM Performance is implementing a new solution called the Five Behaviors of a Cohesive Team, based on Patrick Lencioni’s best-selling book, The Five Dysfunctions of a Team. TEAM chose this solutions-based program to address workplace issues around trust and vulnerability and to encourage companies to build a strong foundation of trust that eventually fosters improved teamwork and results. Five Behaviors of a Cohesive Team has the following components that teams master based on the needs of their work culture:

  1. Vulnerability trust
  2. Mastering healthy conflict
  3. Committing to ideas and embracing teamwork
  4. Peer to peer accountability
  5. Achieving desired results

When teams have the courage to embark on the Five Behaviors of a Cohesive Team journey, the starting point is with a foundation of trust with an added dimension of vulnerability. As you travel the path, each behavior builds upon the next. Where do you unite as a team? Do you feel safe enough to take your true self to work and have the courage to make the needed changes? What would it look like to have an amazing team that trusted one another enough to move to the next level? Imagine what is possible.

*Image courtesy of shutterstock

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2 Responses to “Great Teams Foster These Five Behaviors – Do You?”
  1. Jackie says:

    I do appreciate the visual & the 5 steps. I do feel as a leader I have a clearer picture of why the gossip seems to spread like wild fire yet, with the opportunity for all to look and find the mirror image creates the opportunity to see their gratitude muscles taking form. Each person brings a few golden nuggets to create a treasure box AKA team. To empower trust, open and honest communication, accountability builds a strong foundation which all have taken part in creating. That feels so good. Ahhhhhh!

  2. Mindy says:

    My entire life I have been known as the girl/woman who would “say it like it is”. Sometimes this gets me in a pickle because I react before I should or even when I shouldn’t. I have learned and still am learning when to stay quiet and allow the team conversation to take its course and when, as the leader, to step in and squash it. I think, because I “say it like it is”, I am showing a vulnerability. I am too honest to a fault. My tactful skills have to be very good or I could compare myself to the character in The Devil Wears Prada. Not wanting to be her, I understand her. In the past I could have been her (without all the fancy coats!) I am from Oklahoma and we often quoted, “!@#$ rolls down hill”. Well, so does EVERYTHING ELSE. Trust, accountabilty, vulnerability, commitment, etc. If I don’t show it and live up to IT…how on earth could I expect my team to do so. Thanks, Ellen and Team Performance!

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