3 Tips To Help Your Team Succeed

1) Jump in your helicopter

When you are facing a difficult situation, the drama of it can pull you in and strangle your ability to take different perspectives. You might feel like you are fully immersed, knee-deep in it unable to look beyond. Adrenaline and cortisol can blinker your vision further.

The answer?

Jump in your metaphorical ‘helicopter’ to help you take a bird’s eye view of the situation.

I find going for a walk or working in a different space helps enormously and then asking a few simple questions:

  • What are we ultimately trying to achieve here?
  • What’s the context?
  • What’s happening that is helpful?
  • What’s getting in the way?
  • What would be easy?

If you find it difficult to ‘get out of your head’, write your answers down journal-style, or ask a buddy to be a sounding board for you.

2) Arms open, ears back, hold the space

No, I’m not talking about some crazy yoga pose!

‘Arms open’ - reach out to the team and ask them for their involvement. What do they see? What’s their take on things? What are their answers to the questions above? The earlier you involve a team in defining the problem, the more likely you will have the team’s commitment to being part of the solution.

‘Ears back’ - be truly open to hear what the team have to say even if it makes for difficult listening. Be aware of your ego being triggered. For some this comes in the form of wanting to defend and justify. For others, ego shows up in wanting to rescue the team – to be the hero or the martyr.

‘Hold the space’ - create a safe space where people can make suggestions without fear of reprisal and where they can get really creative. What are you doing to enable a safe environment – and are you doing it consistently?

3) Lead by example

A team that fails to make the time for learning is often the team that sees learning as something additional to the job role. It’s something that’s reserved for project wash-ups or development days. Establish a habit of reflective learning in the team by not simply asking about progress made, but also asking about what’s enabled that progress. When deadlines are missed, don’t just get a new deadline, dig into understanding what the blockers have been. Encourage people to share their ‘lightbulb’ moments. To reinforce these behaviours, remember to ‘catch people doing it right’ – that is, to acknowledge them for working differently. A quick remark, email or text is perfect here. Before long, your team will place greater value on the time spent away from the ‘doing’.

Whilst implementing these 3 actions will definitely make a difference, sometimes when a team is underperforming it can be difficult to get in your metaphorical helicopter.  You're just too close to it and it can also feel very personal.  That’s why getting some outside help can be invaluable.

Throughout October I am offer a free 30-minute Breakthrough call where I'll be manning your helicopter.

We'll delve into why the team is not performing as well as it could be and then identify the next step to transforming it.

To book your call please email me and let me know what challenges you're currently facing and we can schedule a time to speak.