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What makes an organisation successful?

What makes an organisation successful? Is it finance, strategy, leadership, processes, innovation or vision? Of course all of those ingredients are essential, but there is one element that is more important than every other, and that is because without it, none of the other elements work. People! Or more specifically the people that make the organisation and how they work together. THE TEAM.

Functioning, performing and successful teams have been studied and modelled for centuries, and the methods for developing are simple and easy. Yet the reason why they fail all too often is because organisations, groups and team are made of individual human beings. This is where the complexities begin and when it all gets too hard, all too often we resort to power, control, fear and hierarchy.

You may not even notice the negative behaviour or dysfunctions because everyone is busy doing, or delivering output. It looks like the team are succeeding. No team really performs to its maximum potential in these environments, but with a little work and effort you can create an organisation that thrives on performance, reward, recognition, doing the right thing, empowering and accountability. This is the sign of a high performing team and culture.

Five health checks for the living organisation

1. You hire great, talented, enthusiastic people that remain passionate, creative and motivated, or before you know it they are just performing the basics and you need to start managing them more.

2. You have meetings and everyone is energized in creating solutions and having healthy challenging debates, or just a few talk and often come up with the problems and never the solutions.

3. You refer to the people within the organisation as the people, or the team, or do you call them the staff, employees or “my team”?

4. When the organisation wants to implement a new idea, project or product, the team are enthused, giving input and ideas, or does it feel like you are sometimes pulling in the wrong direction.

5. When you look for someone take on a new project or piece of work, can you easily identify who will thrive and flourish to deliver, taking full accountability, or are you searching for someone that will at least deliver, albeit reluctantly.

If you answered from the first example then you are operating in a cohesive, performing team. The reality is that most Managers and Leaders often feel that the energy and enthusiasm is low, and making performance enhancing changes is like walking through treacle and result in cracking the whip to get things done fast.

The 5 behaviours of a cohesive team programme defines the single most untapped competitive advantage of any organisation is TEAM cohesion. To gain this advantage teams must:

Trust one another: When team members are genuinely transparent and honest with one another they build vulnerability based trust
• Engage in conflict around ideas: When a team trusts, they engage in unfiltered constructive debates, brainstorming and challenge
Commit to decisions: When team members are able to offer opinions and debate ideas, they are more likely to commit to decisions
• Hold one another accountable: When everyone is committed to a clear plan of action, they are more willing to hold others accountable
• Focus on collective results: The ultimate goal of building greater trust, conflict, and accountability is one thing – achievement of results

Establishing where your team or organisation stand on each behaviour is the starting point to really changing and developing a high performing, results orientated team.

    For more information contact Lucy Barkas on you can also contact Lucy on LinkedIn,  Facebook and Twitter

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