Monthly Archives: September 2015

The Humble Teammate

False humility always irritates me more than arrogance. At least arrogance is honest. False humility tends to deflect responsibility and dismiss the hard work and effort it took to succeed. I want to be on a team with teammates who acknowledge when they do a good job so we can look at what we did to achieve

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Seeing Beyond Me

I am a great teammate when I understand that the team needs my contribution but doesn’t depend on me to move forward. The team is always bigger than its most valuable player. Sports has made the MVP an award that doesn’t really honor a team effort but celebrates the outstanding individual. The truth is that unless someone

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Seeing is Believing

What is the end game? What is the goal? What are we wanting to accomplish? What do we want to celebrate? Have we seen it before? It’s easy to aim at something that we have experienced before, but what if the vision is something that is outside the experience of anyone on the team? The key to

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Running Through the Target

When I played football, I was taught to run through the player I was tackling. That made me an effective linebacker because as I aimed through the ball carrier, the impact I made was more intense than if I had stopped as I made contact. How often do we sell our team goals short? How often do

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Choices and Excuses

We only ever do what we care about. This is one of the hardest truths. It’s a truth that punctuates deep into our narratives about what we do and why we do it. It is easy to say that I am too busy or that I forgot when I’ve let someone down. It’s difficult, however, to admit

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The Value of Why

Teams that understand what is at stake will be less likely to focus on small matters of preference and comfort. When teams can keep the most important things on the urgent list, then they will be better focused on what needs to be done in order to accomplish mission critical items. Agendas, opinions, and preferences go out

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Knowing Enough to be Dangerous

Teams require teamwork. If someone on the team is an expert in a certain area, then they should be trusted to handle that area even if another teammate disagrees. Teammates who know just enough about another role to be dangerous can sometimes hinder teamwork through second guessing. I have seen too many people question the judgement of experts to

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Guide

When teammates are new at a certain task, they require a bit more supervision than a seasoned veteran. After a teammate has been told and shown how to accomplish a task they should be released to the “guide” phase of training. When a leader guides a teammate they allow that person to do the task while being supervised.

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Show

In a team setting, it is easy to simply tell someone something and expect that communication to be sufficient. Unfortunately, telling someone something only conveys a limited amount of necessary information. It’s difficult to sufficiently describe everything that is in our head in a verbal way. It is even more difficult to find the time to thoroughly

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Tone

The tone of communication is actually a large part of the actual communication. When I am telling someone something, I should take care to project a tone that matches the severity of a situation. Staying calm is usually a good default if I want my information to be received well. If I feel entitled to communicate without

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