Is yours a high performing team?

work culture

A friend of mine, Jake, narrated me an incident that happened to him last week.

Jake works in a software development company as a junior PHP developer. They had a team meeting to discuss the strategy to work out a project and around 15 people attended it. They proceeded with their usual methodology but some new issues stood as the hurdle. Their normal did not work out to meet those hurdles. It was then Jake thought some out of the box idea. Being a junior, he was a bit apprehensive at the beginning but presented the idea. The team became active again. Everyone was happy with the new solution and followed it closely. Everything was clear to everyone. At one point, Jake got stuck and couldn’t make it to the next level. The meeting room fell silent. Only disappointment lingered in the air. Jake lost all his confidence to try again. That meeting turned out to be an utter failure.

I consoled him saying it was not his fault. Besides Jake, there were many others at the meeting. Even though a junior, Jake tried to find and present a solution. It was the collective responsibility of the team members to work on it and make it work. The team was not willing to contribute to the idea put forward by Jake. They did not think about it. Rather attempted to follow blindly. This was the mistake.

This can happen to any one of us. These days most of us work as teams. The members of each team will be coming from different backgrounds. Their thought processes will be different. So, discussion on strategy or idea among the team can help to bring up so many interesting solutions and ways of implementation. The key point here is that the members have to use their thinking ability to find a unique solution. Wider the cognitive or thinking range of the members, higher the chances of finding perfect solutions.

How can one improve the thinking ability?

There are some factors which allow a person to think on a wider perspective. The most important one is a suitable environment where the person can express without fear.

Would you express your ideas if you fear somebody would laugh at it??

No. This is something every team leader has to ensure, as the captain of the team. Next comes the shared responsibility. If a person comes up with a solution, even if it fails at some level, instead of pointing the finger to the person, the whole team has to share the responsibility for the outcomes. This gives the team members a confidence that they will get the support of the team even if something goes wrong. So they will express their ideas and try to experiment more of a wider perspective.

The ability for adaptability is a much-preferred trait among all the high performing teams. These teams survive in any situations irrespective of how bad the conditions be. Even if the task is hefty, those who have high levels of adaptability, can put the smart work into action and bring out the solution successfully. High performing teams will be always curious to both the mistakes as well as for solutions. They want to improve themselves more and more.

They encourage themselves and other team members to achieve bigger targets. These teams are seen experimenting with better solutions each time. Since they are in a psychologically safe environment, they can dig deep for more experiments without fear of criticism.

Don’t wait for somebody to bring the change. Be the change you want to see in others. Implement these aspects in your team. Nurture positive interactions among team members. This will benefit them to widen their perspectives and create a deeper understanding among the members. Think creative and unique. Let the world witness your best.