“All happy families are alike; each unhappy family is unhappy in its own way.”
-- Leo Tolstoy, Anna Karenina
The same can be said of teams. When a team struggles, the whole company feels it. You know the telltale signs: productivity plummets, conflict deepens, communication grinds to a halt, decisions don’t get made. Here’s the thing: like unhappy families, the root causes of unhealthy team dynamics can be hard to diagnose. How do you solve team problems? It all comes down to identifying the root cause and choosing the right type of team building intervention. Here are some examples.
PROBLEM: The team can’t make decisions.
ASK YOURSELF: Does the team have clear unifying business goals, a mission, specified roles and responsibilities?
PROBLEM: The team doesn’t collaborate well. Members seem competitive with each other.
ASK YOURSELF: Does the team share core values? Do they hold each other accountable for living up to those values? Do they agree that these shared values will lead to success?
PROBLEM: The team doesn’t click. They seem to have a hard time executing.
ASK YOURSELF: Do the team members have complementary talents, motivations and personalities? Do members know each other well enough to play to each other’s strengths? Do they see the value in their differences?
PROBLEM: Team members don’t communicate effectively.
ASK YOURSELF: Does this team seem to lack some important skill sets? Do you have the sense that some members simply don’t know how to communicate clearly, come to reasonable, timely decisions, bridge cultural differences, or resolve conflicts?
PROBLEM: The team just hasn’t been the same since adding new members.
ASK YOURSELF: How were the new team members introduced? Was there an onboarding process to effectively integrate the new members?
PROBLEM: The team’s out of whack and nothing’s working.
ASK YOURSELF: Is it the team or is it the team leader? Is working with the leader key to changing the dynamics?
PROBLEM: The team needs to be more innovative.
ASK YOURSELF: Does the team have the tools, processes and interpersonal climate to be creative?
If you suspect your team's or business might have one or more of these problems, identifying the problem is always the first step. To resolve your issue and develop the right action plan, contact us for a consultation.
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