Tomorrow is the first day of March, and I hereby designate March as National Teamwork Month. Yes, I have randomly declared 31 days as my own unofficial holiday. No, I won’t change my mind. Why? Because we all need a good reminder of what the power of teams can accomplish. And what better way to kick that off than with an amazing tool from noted organizational psychologist, Dr. Daniel Crosby.

teamtypeMy TeamType is an assessment that you can administer for teams in your organization to determine where they fall in terms of overall performance. And for the month of March, I have a special bonus for anyone who orders an assessment for their team(s). Read on for more details.

My experience

When I was testing this tool recently, we had a new manager join our organization. I saw that as a prime opportunity to help them understand where their team currently was on the scale as well as some ideas for how to move them even farther down the road toward an ascending team. That is a good option for any team, but for one with a new manager, I knew that it would be a great way to help get a grasp on how the team saw itself as the new person took the reins as the leader of the group. Continue reading

Last time we talked, we discussed some of the difficulties that affect team performance. Today we’re going to narrow it down to the two key areas that matter most: rapport and results. In the big picture, the relationships within the team and the quality/quantity of work that gets done are the only things that really matter. If you go back to the list at the link above and read through it, a team with an orientation of high rapport and high results will overcome virtually all of the potential roadblocks to solid long term performance. But what exactly do I mean by “rapport” and “results?” Let’s delve into those two categories a little deeper.

Rapport AKA “How you communicate”

rapportWhat is rapport, anyway? In short, it’s the interpersonal interactions that make up the overall communication health of the team. Do they get along? Do they interact well? Do things flow? Are there bottlenecks? What about gossip? Do people go beyond the basic required communication to keep each other in the loop and up to date? Do people hoard information or share freely? Continue reading

I’ve talked here before about teams and what makes them work (or not). Have you ever stopped to think about why it’s so difficult to get teams working in the right direction?

    1. Different people want different things from their work.
    2. Different personal styles/personalities.
    3. Interpersonal communication preferences.
    4. Power struggles and competing agendas.
    5. Politics.
    6. Lack of participation.
    7. Members who reject new ideas because “we’ve never done it that way before.”
    8. People with a constant sense of negativity.
    9. Team that agrees on everything too quickly just to avoid conflict. Continue reading