Leadership Team Development

A Key Ingredient to Building a Cohesive Team

 

Joana Domingues explains how a strong tactic of team leadership may be to admit when you need help.

Every time I do it, it’s magical. And yet, I refrain. After all, I’ve spent a life showing myself strong and helpful, capable of dealing with anything you throw at me, and with composure and a smile (without asking for help). Isn’t that the definition of “very professional”? Well… it surely has its merits, and I’ve found it’s also a recipe for my exhaustion. My “invincibility armour” creates separation, does not let help in. At the same time, it may also limit the capacity of others to ask for help, afraid of displaying their own vulnerabilities and needs.

Interestingly, when I do recognize “I’m tired”, or “I have too much on my plate”, help seems to magically unfold my way, new possibilities and choices emerge. I feel lighter, more supported, in this together. It’s a muscle I am learning to strengthen – and for me it might be a lifelong journey.

I see my “strong-alone-exhausted” pattern in many of the executives and teams we are coaching. Often overwhelmed with work, focused on delivering the load ‘on their own plate’, they don’t stop to acknowledge their own weaknesses and limits, to share what is hard, where they could use some help.

 

Key points identified in this article include:

  • How vulnerability builds trust and cooperation
  • Executive patterns
  • Checking impulses 

 

Read the full article, How showing vulnerability helps build a stronger team: exactly when it’s harder, on LinkedIn.

 

Case Study: Executive Team Development

 

Priyanka Ghosh shares a case study on the steps taken to address a slump in the business cycle combined with frictions in the Leadership Team.

SITUATION

The Middle-Eastern unit of global energy company was facing a challenging period due to a slump in the business cycle combined with frictions in its Leadership Team. As the Middle East business had grown, the Leadership Team had expanded to reflect the broader set of service lines and increased levels of functional support. Most of the new members had joined from outside the company. They were not accustomed to the company’s culture or ways of doing things. Furthermore, they were scattered across numerous countries in the region. ProMelior was asked to uncover why the Leadership Team was not living up to its full potential and to drive a program of individual and team coaching to improve business performance.

DIAGNOSIS

To gain a robust picture of the leadership team, both as individuals and as a team, ProMelior conducted a thorough set of diagnostic analyses. For each executive, we conducted 360-degree feedback surveys and administered various psychometric tests. We also conducted in-depth ‘Life-line interviews’ in which we explored how the individuals had made important decisions in their lives. By triangulating the various sources of information, we built up a detailed picture of ‘what made each executive tick’ and their observed behavior patterns in business situations. We also observed the Leadership Team in action during a variety of meetings to understand how they discussed issues, managed conflict and made decisions.

Through the diagnostic analyses, ProMelior generated several important insights. First, the psychometric testing and Lifeline interviews showed clearly showed that most of the Leadership Team members were ‘amiable’ vs ‘analytical’ people. In other words, they valued being liked and maintaining harmony over analyzing issues and pursuing the ‘truth’. As a result, the Leadership Team rarely analyzed the company’s strategic challenges and tended to avoid open conflicts between team members. Over the long-term, however, these behaviors led to a growing set of unresolved issues which elevated interpersonal tensions and created operational gridlock. Second, the Leadership Team held very unstructured meetings without clear agendas or robust time management. Not surprisingly, the meetings tended to meander on detailed operational issues without addressing the key strategic or organizational challenges of the company.

 

Key points from this case study include:

  • Presenting the insights from the diagnostic analyses
  • Training sessions on the characteristics of a high-performing team
  • Components of developing the Leadership Team

 

Read the full case study, The Executive Team Coaching & Development Program, on Promelior.co.uk