As leaders, perhaps the most common tension we feel pertains to our TEAM. All of us would love to build better and stronger teams. However, old habits are hard to break. In my experience coaching over the years, I have noticed five distinct tendencies that tend to sabotage our team building.
Leading others at the neglect of leading ourselves
AS THE LEADER GOES SO GOES THE ORGANIZATION. If we are the leader, the bad news is that we are the lid. The good news? We are the lid. We must lead ourselves to the next level. We must spend an inordinate amount of time working on ourselves. By the way, this includes getting coaching! It’s easier and lazier to manage everyone else than to take responsibility to lead ourselves. If we get better the whole team will get better. I must go first.
Responding rather than Initiating
If I simply react and respond to requests and email inboxes, I may do the urgent, but I will neglect the important. I must first be doing the things that are crucial for my role and that which produces the highest return on investment. The urgent tactical things come second. Turning our smartphone off for a period of time every day can help!
Managing rather than monitoring
There’s a big difference between managing and monitoring. When I manage I become entangled in the minutia. I am involved in every decision. I am involved in the details. There’s a big difference in managing and leading. Leaders equip others for tasks and then check in regularly to monitor progress and debrief and coach.
Inviting vs Recruiting
Two and Three Star Athletes (leaders) may sign up on a card or send in a resume. Four and Five Star Athletes (leaders) must be recruited. We must constantly be on the lookout for great talent and go after them. Great players aren’t looking for a position or something else to do. More people won’t solve our problems. The right people will. We must consistently recruit great talent.
Delegating rather than Equipping
We can’t hire someone and then “just trust them to do their job.” We should never just delegate tasks. We should equip leaders through consistent, training and coaching. This requires constant feedback, both positive and corrective. Great leaders know that being too busy to meet with our leaders is a cop-out and a lack of willingness to take responsibility for our leadership. We must equip people and build teams! Teams work together to accomplish collective scoreboard wins. Leadership is required to do just that.