We’re doing some team building stuff at work, and I really enjoy this stuff. No, we didn’t all stand there and let ourselves be caught by other team members or do rope climbing. It was more of a discussion of some goals and processes we’re going to be using going forward, with some really good ‘Essence of Team’ concepts introduced. Our team is mostly in one office, but there are other members that are regional, so chance had almost all of us in the office last week and it was REALLY cool to have everyone in the same room.
After the meeting we were given some surveys to fill out, mostly to see where possible change points might exist as well as a personality test. I took the test and came up ENFJ. Gotta say, the description of the individual attributes surprised me, but in the same way, it made a lot of sense. Never thought of myself like King David, Abraham Lincoln, Ronald Reagan, and Barack Obama 🙂 Kinda neat.
We were given a book by Patrick Lencioni, called “The Five Dysfunctions of a Team” to read, and at first I was skeptical, thinking it was another team functional manual. I knew that it could help us function better as a team so I cracked it open last night to read the first few pages. 200 pages is nothing, and before I realized, it was midnight and I was almost 3/4 the way through it. Crashed and finished it up this morning. We got it Wednesday 🙂
It’s a fictional account of how a new CEO is hired and walks her executive team through some exercises in trust, communication, and other essential factors to being a team.
It made me look at a lot of my behaviors and be able to pinpoint what I’m doing correctly, and what needs work. It made me think that the Japanese really have the concept of team correct. In Japanese, it’s ???or Chi-Mu. See, there IS an I in team 🙂 Seriously, the axiom of ‘No I in Team’ is wrong in my view because the biggest difference to me is that the individual has to make that decision to put the team first, to put the goals and results of the team as a whole over the individuals goals or advancement. There’s also an I in Samurai, which means ‘to serve’. The samurai thought the greatest honor was sacrificing themselves for their lord or their country. No, I’m not suggesting you use a letter opener to commit seppuku, but that essence of service, of giving over the ‘individualness’ to the group thought begins with the ‘I’, it begins with the individual making that choice to throw themselves into a more group consciousness so that they can push forward and gain the results they ALL want as a team.
And it all begins with Trust.
Give the book a read, it’s not just applicable for business relationships. There are several things in here that will allow me to be a better husband, father, and friend.