I was talking with a leader yesterday who has a team that is struggling. Many of the team members act like bullies and it is not uncommon to hear yelling, swearing, and gossip.
This leader mentioned that all his team members were good performers in terms of their job tasks. And then he said that they had a separate and slower process and way of dealing with people who did not live their values (which is where he classified the teaming behaviors).
I suggested that he move teaming expectations into the category of basic job tasks - not as a nice to have separate category. Work is a team endeavor and yelling at someone is a failing of a fundamental performance expectation.
Are teaming expectations held to the same level of importance and accountability as technical job tasks in your workplace? I think they should be.
More teams fail to meet their goals due to teaming issues than they do because of poor technical skills. If you want to be goal oriented, you will be team development oriented.
And here is one more question/challenge. What kind of a team member are you? Would your employees see you as a role model of great teaming? We do employee engagement surveys and we always ask about this. It is very common to get results that tell us that managers are not playing well with each other and are not setting a good tone for their teams. You might not be a great team member if:
- You are over controlling.
- You avoid your peers because you don't want to deal with them.
- You talk unflatteringly about your peers.
- You impede progress during meetings or conversations (watch for people who check out).
- You are passive-agressive (say "yes" but mean "no").
- You are no fun to work with - for whatever reasons.
Be the bigger person. Extend the olive branch. Be a joy! Bring donuts without being asked. But mostly, enable progress and visibly support peers. You will live longer (less stress) and your peers will live longer (less stress) and your company will live longer (better results).