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Why Do You Need a High Performing Team in 2022?

WHY DO YOU NEED A HIGH PERFORMING TEAM IN 2022?

Written by Loren Pettigrew, Head of Business Engagement

Why do you need a high performing team more than ever in 2022? And is the recipe to success different in our current climate? 

Is it because the “great resignation” is here and people have had time to think about what they really want and need from a job? Is it because the competition is bigger, bolder, and brighter? Is it because when we lose our top talent, it costs us a lot more than the loss of IP and hiring and training that new team member? 

It is all of these things and more. The landscape has changed and the need for businesses to perform is more important now, than ever. 

The disruption of basically everything to do with the way we work over the last few years is undeniable, but has it actually changed the fundamentals of building, driving and retaining a team of high performers? I’d like to say no! The modality has changed a little but the underlying principles of getting a group of people to overachieve together and drive high performance has not changed. The same as the principles of a great leader and how to create a great culture have not actually changed in this upside-down world. 

Our teams need great leadership more than ever. People are tired and there is some fragility within the ranks. The cost of losing good people and not achieving our targets and strategic goals feels higher, but the rules and the methods we need to use, have not. 

Yes, we have new technology, distributed workplaces, virtual meetings, and far less physical time in an office with our teams, but human behaviour and patterns have not changed! That is why some of our favourite leadership books from the early 1900’s are still full of gold, and current in 2022. 

There are patterns that we see within high performing teams that we know drive their performance. We work with 1000’s of them across the globe. In fact, we are working with a couple of teams at the moment who have the direct opposite of what I am about to list and, as you would expect, they have the correlating organisational under performance. 

Before we start on that take this assessment to see where your team is sitting: 

https://theleadershipsphere.outgrow.us/highperformanceteamquiz

Don’t worry, we won’t spam you, we will simply send you your results! It’s interesting to stop and look at where your team and business is currently compared to where you aspire to be. This assessment is the foundation of the work we do with teams, who are trying to go from good to great. The results show us the team alignment and the aspirations of the group. This identifies how much work we have to do to build their performance. 

The Discovery Survey also shows us the level of trust within a team and how aligned they are.  We get visibility of the disparity between rankings which identifies the key areas for the team to work on. Those are two of the key components of a successful high-performing team, Trust & Alignment. 

Trust

Trust is a fundamental component of not only high-performing teams, but of any successful business. There is not one team that we have worked with that would not experience an increase in profitability if they increased their levels of trust. Surprisingly, it is one of the things that we find is consistently put at risk by questionable behaviours from leaders, often without knowledge of the impact of their actions. The number of books, articles and strategies around the speed of trust is in the millions and there is a very sound reason for it. 

When there is a lack of trust, it is almost impossible to create sustainable change in a team until trust is built.  Mistrust and the assumptions of ill intent more than triple the time it takes to embed new initiatives and “turn the ship” if you will. 

High trust allows for real and robust discussion, smooth execution, far fewer disruptions to delivering results, happier staff, less HR issues and a lower attrition rate. The upside of these things is higher revenue, more time to achieve proactive and strategic objectives and less time in the reactive ‘fire fighting’ space. 

How can you increase trust in your team today? 

  • Have a leadership team that displays consistent behaviours 
  • Have clear communication and transparency 
  • See things and say things, accepting poor behaviour is a quick way to lose the trust of your other team members
  • Do what you say you will, when you say you will, sounds simple but it’s not always! 
  • Set agreed team behaviours 
  • Make sure your mission, vision and values have behaviours with them and they are talked about. They are not just a poster on the wall.

Alignment 

This word is slightly overused just like “un-precedented” and “pivot” over the last few years but it is on point! The teams that achieve greatness and growth, all have high levels of alignment at every level. 

Alignment creates clarity, increases productivity and contribution within teams.  Alignment on where they want to get to, how you will get there, and what is involved. 

We wanted to share the model that we often use to define and drive high performance. 

The Integrated Leadership Development Model firstly invites consideration of the ‘field of play’ or Context in which effective leadership is required. This helps to gain clarity about the reality of the organisation, team(s) and their leaders, including strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, threats and an articulation of its short and long-term aspirations.Once Clarity has been established, Capability must be built to fit. Finally, Contribution means the leader(s) and team(s) contribute in a meaningful and constructive way towards the strategy, the achievement of business results and a focus on people.

How can you increase alignment in your team today? 

  1. Engage in robust discussions to (truly) understand the current situation, including an internal and external perspective.
  2. To borrow a terms from Susan Scott (author of Fierce Conversations), take the time to ‘interrorgate reality’. Don’t make assumptions about what people are thinking or feeling! 
  3. Discuss and agree on an aspirational and exciting future.
  4. Create a strategic and operational plan on how to bridge today with the future aspiration.
  5. Work to create clarity – every day.
  6. Build the capability to get there.
  7. Reward, acknowledge and hold people accountable for their contribution to realising the aspiration.
  8. Build a requisite amount of safety and trust to achieve the above. Otherwise, your conversations and outcomes will be more fantasy than fact.

Wishing you and your team an awesome 2022, full of overachievement and enjoyable work days! 
If you would like to discuss how we can support you and your team to go from ‘good to great’  you can book a meeting with one of our Business Engagement team here:

Why Do You Need a High Performing Team in 2022?

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