Need Teamwork? Maybe Not
Does your team work together? No, I don’t mean do they cooperate, collaborate, and have a culture of kumbayah. Do they physically work together every day? This is an important question to ask as it can change the way you manage, save you time, and resources.
Recently, I had the opportunity to deliver a program to a group of mid-level executives, each in a different city and in charge of a different market sector for their organization. The manager, a VP in the organization was intent on teambuilding and that had been his management focus. However, during the program, one of the participants stated aloud that he found no benefit in their weekly teambuilding phone calls. Ouch!
The executive and I looked at his team and he realized that that they don’t work together or even depend on one another for resources or business. While that is true, I pointed out to the manager that the concentration should be on having his team focus on the strategic plan, ensure that each of his managers buys into the vision for the organization, and then drive that vision throughout their own teams. But don’t they still need to collaborate and cooperate? Glad you asked.
This executive’s managers are, for the most part, equal peers. Each brings a different His managers might form more of a mastermind group.
All of these managers are equal peers bringing different experience, talents, attributes, and skills to the table. One solution is for this team to view themselves as a mastermind group. In other words, once the executive ensures that each understands and buys into the organizational vision, they now use that as their focus and become problem solvers for one another on how each market they represent can play its part to best achieve that vision.
If you’ve never been in a mastermind group, it works like this.
- Decide on how frequently the group should meet. It could be weekly, monthly, or some other increment of time.
- Determine if these meetings can be done over the phone or if people will need to travel to a mutually convenient and agreed upon location. This will, of course, have an impact on meeting frequency.
- Determine how long each meeting will last. This will vary depending on the number of “members.”
- Depending on the number of people at each meeting, each member is allotted a certain amount of time to discuss issues, concerns, ask questions, etc., and have the others help come up with solutions.
- This mastermind group then becomes its own accountability vehicle.
Mastermind groups such as this are easy to set up and any group of people will find them helpful. For example, groups such as administrative assistants, to supervisors to executives can establish their own mastermind group. Teambuilding, as we know it, may not be one of the most effective business tools for your team. Mastermind groups can have a bigger impact, be more efficient, and hold people more accountable. Teamwork, mmmm maybe not.
Graphic credit BigStock.com Copyright: cartoon resource