Should Team Members Be Friends? Team Members Must Be Useful to One Another – Part 2


Aristotle suggested that friends must “be useful to one another

If we substitute the word “team members” for “friends” we can develop skills and enhance our value to the organization by focusing on improving our skills as an effective members of a community.

Team Members must be Useful to One Another

This is what a team is for. To develop a network and system of shared usefulness. A shared usefulness where there is a shared knowledge of roles and responsibilities for each member of the department.

Team members that have satisfaction with their jobs and stay with a company for years have developed a deep understanding of reciprocal tasks and responsibilities with the other members’ roles. This returns to the concept of “being a team member as opposed to making oneself desirable for membership in the team”.

Once an organization has a mission of usefulness to one another, the culture created is one that reciprocates talents to enhance the others to achieve success.


Because they are acting as an individual who is able to show respect and reciprocity, they behave in a manner that is reciprocal and comes from an internal motivation to be a useful to their organization and community. Developing a culture of goals and metrics that are team focused, where people can act in self-directed ways that multiply the effectiveness of the entire organization.

Like an orchestra, each team member is a specialist and knows just when to be useful, in resonance with the organization.

  • How can team members be useful to each other?
  • Why would this help a team succeed?
  • What is needed within a team culture to develop “usefulness”?
  • Should team members be friends?
Source by Michael Cardus

Team Building Tools and The Sacrificial Lamb Syndrome


Team maintenance and development.

Designed to improve team performance.

Any team is a complex of personalities, behavioural styles, imbued with open and hidden agendas. Successful team performance is dependent upon many facets of interaction. The team dynamic is a subtle, fragile and fluid multi-dimensional blend of interactions. Such a melange is fertile ground for misinformation, misunderstanding and mistrust. Constant change is the revitalising life-blood of any team, however some team members may not so readily embrace change as the more driving and adventurous individuals. Many individuals who find themselves part of a team are just that, ‘Individuals’ and not team players. Some are naturally suspicious of change. Some are naturally reactive rather than proactive. How then may any team succeed and meet its published objective, its reason for being?

In fact the majority of teams never actually meet their objective in totality. They either miss the target altogether, or are guilty of overkill. They either deliver too late or too early.

The end product of their deliberations is either lacking in quality or too sophisticated for its intended marketplace.

It is fairly obvious that for a team to run effectively it must own a basket of skills and abilities relevant to its objective.

What is so often overlooked is that the natural team dynamic must also be in accord with the demands of the objective.

This fact alone can condemn the team to certain failure.

Necessary Skills and Abilities+Team Relationship Harmony. = A team with every opportunity to meet its objective. This does not guarantee success but it makes achievement of the objective more likely. Most teams are constructed with the focus on the skills and abilities only. The objective is then usually dumped on the team and ‘output management’ rules OK. Output management can, and only ever does, deal with history.

The measurement and management of outputs is in many ways a complete misuse of management time and effort. It must be obvious that when an event has taken place you can never undo what has been done. You may of course have an inquest and try to determine what went wrong.

After the inquest has taken place and the findings published you then have an opportunity to do what should have been done in the first place.

Lesson: There are no certain short cuts to success.

Often the team as a whole are seen as responsible for their ultimate failure.

Sometimes individual team members are pilloried and the blame is squarely laid at their door.

Should the responsibility for failure rest solely with the team the team leader, the team as a whole or with another individual?

Is that fair?

We think not.

True the team may not have performed to the level of expectations of others. True the team may have simply fallen apart at the seams. True it could appear to others that certain players in the piece did not ‘do their bit’. The question to be answered is WHY? The answer in whole or in part is almost certain to be lack of forethought, lack of consequential planning, lack of true preparation, lack of patience, lack of attention to fine detail by those responsible for setting the original team objective. The single most important failure factor though will almost certainly be lack of sensitive team role casting by the individual or individuals responsible for determining the objective and identifying the team members in the first place. For a team to have a better than fair chance of success the people responsible for creating the team must attend to the finest of detail in their scoping of the overall project.

They must also complete a detailed ‘role casting’ document in advance of project roll-out.

Some companies offer team-bonding games and exercises such as a day paintballing or a weekend in the wilderness eating insects and berries.

Such organisations do have a role to play but all too often they are called in by those on high who have simply run out of ideas, excuses and time (they suddenly realise their days in office may be numbered).

It is often a last ditch effort by such an individual or individuals to identify which team member or members should be held responsible and therefore carry the can on their behalf, ‘The Sacrificial Lamb Syndrome’. In reality is this form of ‘treatment’ almost always too little, too late to be of any real corporate value? Any subsequent programmes of improvement, if any, offered by way of solution are often of doubtful long-term benefit and even short-term value. The short term quick-fix approach usually only ever results in the symptoms being treated and the cause never truly identified. Often such solutions are not only at great cost in direct fiscal terms but also in the less easily quantifiable areas of financial haemorrhage caused by lost time, internal relationship melt down and bruised egos. Is this then in reality a help or a hindrance?

Has the symptom been paid all of the available time and attention and the true cause left untreated?

In the majority of cases the answer is a resounding yes, so how then may we create a dependable defence against poor team performance missed objectives and subsequent team failure?

What is, and why have a detailed ‘role casting’ document?

Who should produce it?

Role Casting is multi-functional.

It is the process by which you determine who is to be involved in a project and exactly what their specific contribution will be.

Role Casting also determines the manner and style in which the selected individuals and therefore the team as a whole will approach the task in hand.

Role Casting Questionnaires.

There may be a number of separate and distinct questionnaires to be completed.

Focused Team Role Casting.

Film producers are accountable for budgets of millions of pounds therefore you may be certain that they pay due regard to the soft issues surrounding the critical process of Role Casting.

Getting it wrong would and has in the past for some spelt financial disaster. It is not enough to know that a particular Star could fulfil the role, has the looks, the experience, the technical skills and abilities required to play the lead role. It has to be proven beyond doubt that they will also be able to gel particularly with the director and the other Stars in the cast. How many times have we heard stories of the petulant and disruptive behaviour of a so called Star. This happens when the 3 M’s of misinformation, misunderstanding and mistrust have started to taint the many, many relationships within a team which comes together to shoot a new film. This then creates fertile ground for the first roots of discontent these roots can spread out at an alarming rate like the Mycenae of a fungus and contaminate the whole Film Project within just a few hours. When one considers that there could be many relationship clusters (a relationship cluster is a close team within the overall project such as the Filming Crew) with each cluster having maybe up to 30 individual relationship links. With so many interpersonal links it is not unreasonable to suppose that certain relationships may be fraught from time to time, ultimately causing upset and rifts within the team. This will often seriously and negatively affect the team dynamic resulting in team objective drift.

By developing the art of ‘proactive preventative’ rather than ‘reactive diagnostic’ team management, much of the debilitating aspects of team member interpersonal relationship incongruence may be avoided.

Paying the price up front of your own volition by investing in team interpersonal relationship behavioural style training will be a budget expense you will have to fight very, very hard for.

Generally because those who control the corporate purse are so far from the coal face they are in effect blind to the soft non fiscal issues which are so often in reality the root cause of Corporate malaise and possible ultimate failure.

Consider the number of teams likely to have to be created to fulfil a particular Corporate Objective; there could be dozens. Then consider the likely odds on there being many relationship banana skins just lying there waiting for the unsuspecting foot fall of a poorly trained or newbie team leader!

There are tools which exist that have been at our disposal for a number of years but which are unknown to most and undervalued and ignored by many.

How is your team performing?

Are you using such tools or are you gloriously unaware of their existence?

Source by Malcolm S Milligan

Teambuilding Volleyball Drills


A difficult skill to teach for a volleyball coach is team building. There are some good volleyball drills that can help build teamwork and camaraderie with your players. You will want to work on this skill in order for each player to be able to trust in their teammates and know that they can count on them to make the plays that is expected of them. One of the most important concepts you will want to instill in your team is that a team is 6 players working in tandem, rather than 6 people trying to carry everything on their own. These volleyball drills will go a long way toward helping build this team spirit.

One of the great volleyball drills that will help build team work is a race of sorts. Pick a relatively long distance and have the team run together. You will want to set a realistic time to beat for the entire team. Once that is established, let the team start out running. In order to work correctly, however, you will need to set certain consequences depending upon the outcome. Because they are running as a team, you can establish that there will be a penalty of 1 suicide for every 5 seconds that elapses between the first team mate to cross the finish line and the last. This will help your team work together to cross as closely together as possible. That is also where the time limit comes into play. The same type of penalty can apply for every 5 seconds that the team misses the limit by. This will help prevent the entire team from simply walking together. These types of volleyball drills will help your team work together toward a common goal.

Using an obstacle course as teamwork building volleyball drills can be another interesting change of pace. One of the great ways to accomplish this is to set up a course that is designed to be done by a pair of players. You want to make players have to help each other. If your players are forced to help each other, they will come to depend upon each other. Using time limits will also help ensure that your teams try their hardest, rather than just coasting through the course. You can offer penalties for too much difference in the times between teams finishing, or add the times of the teams together as one overall time. This is a good way to use volleyball drills to condition as well as build a cohesive team.

Not all volleyball drills have to offer penalties to the team to be effective. You can help your team grow together by simply using typical strategies found in traditional team building camps. These can include anything that you think will help your players come to trust and rely on each other. A great example of this is having half of your team close their eyes and fall backwards into the arms of one of their teammates. This is one of the best ways to instill trust in each other. With a little imagination, you can integrate many different trust building skills into your volleyball drills.

A team is only as good as its weakest player. This is why you want to use volleyball drills to help your team come together as a cohesive unit. By building a team spirit, you will help ensure that you have a single team on the court at any time, rather then just 6 individual players. Team building volleyball drills can be as important as any other type of drill you will work on through the season.

Source by Hayley Merrett

Celebrate Holidays For Motivation and Team Building


With the current economic climate, it is normal for people to be stressed. Unfortunately, that stress can permeate into the workplace, which will impede productivity and team morale. That is something that as an employer or manager you will want to avoid. Often you can do that by simply bringing in an atmosphere of fun and festivity.

When you are looking at how to motivate your employees one of the keys is to create a fun place to work where your employees want to be. If they are invested in your company and your team, you can be sure that they are going to be dedicating their all to the work at hand. So how can you make that happen?

A really fantastic way to add some fun into the workday is to create holiday celebrations. Often employers think that you should ignore the holidays, but quite the opposite is true. Actually observing them can give your employees something to look forward to, and actually create a change of pace for them to enjoy which can invigorate them for the rest of their day. The great thing about this is that you do not have to stick with only the traditional holidays, but you can even celebrate the more minor holidays.

A great way to increase motivation is by doing holiday contests. These contests can be sales base, productivity based, or research based. You can tailor make each of these contests to fit your specific workplace. Infusing your workplace with some healthy competition can get your employees excited and will add to their daily motivation.

Additionally, you may want to create some team building opportunities that are tied to the holidays. This does not mean that you have to throw and extravagant party for every holiday, but celebrating a bit can help to lift morale and create a closer team. For example, perhaps Cinco de Mayo might be an opportunity to provide nachos in the break room at a specific time. This will give your employees the opportunity to get to know one another better through a common experience.

An obvious opportunity for team building is to do a secret Santa gift exchange. However, this does not need to be limited to Christmas time. You can also do something like this during February with a Secret Cupid or even October with Boo Baskets. To keep this affordable for everyone set a small limit on price like $5 per gift. This will help to ensure that everyone can participate, but it will also force your team to be creative in what they are doing which is precisely what you want from them on a daily basis. It is this creativity that can spill over into their every day work from an event like this.

The holidays are no longer simply a day off work. Instead, they can be an opportunity for you to help motivate and build your team of employees. By taking advantage of this, you will be sure to reap the benefits for the rest of your fiscal year.

Source by A Harrison Barnes

It’s A Good Idea To Make Sure Your Team Building Techniques Are Current With The Times


If you keep doing the same thing over and over and expect different results, you probably need to reevaluate what you are doing or at least don’t expect anything new. Well, this takes us to the discussion of team building. If you are responsible for improving your team’s performance and team building is in your plans, will you be utilizing the most current techniques? We know most aspects of organizational dynamics change, so is your approach to TB utilizing the latest and greatest approaches to improving team dynamics?

It wasn’t that long ago when team exercises comprised outdoor activities such as climbing ropes or falling backwards, into the arms of your colleagues? Those were exercises to instill trust and confidence in your compstriates. Today, those exercises seem to be pretty elementary. But those techniques don’t work today because employees change. These changes are brought on due to evolving technology, education, demographics and more sophisticated lifestyles.

Whether it is an exercise for new employees, experienced employees or executive level managers; building an organization must be based on current information concerning socio-economic issues and utilizing current trends in interpersonal skills training within teams. Further, the whole event does not need to be a marathon meeting in an attempt to cram as much learning as possible into a short period of time. More and become less when it comes to trying to change relationships.

Think back just 15 years and ask yourself: Has anything changed in the way team exercises are conducted, planned or structured? If you come out of the tech industry, most likely the economic downturn has been going on for 10 years. Remember when the dot com bubble burst? Then came a general economic downturn. We are all started trying to do more with less. That was facilitated to some extent because of: better employee/management skills, improved training, more education of the workforce, technologies, focus on what’s important versus some process that was not adding a significant improvement, or we just accept downsized expectations.

I submit, smaller team building groups, unique exercises, and a better understanding of the needs/motivations of employee participants can make a difference. The experiences of high unemployment, layoff’s of fellow workers/friends/family, corporate restructuring, and salary reductions add a new dynamic to team building. New approaches to team building techniques need to be explored; they must be current and relevant. People need to be given tools to help them work together better. More importantly they need to see and experience how to utilize the new techniques until they are comfortable using them as part of their daily routine.

A constant in business and team building is-change.

Source by Steven Lay

Fun Team Building Games for the Office


Working as a team can be difficult especially if you have a big group. Add to that the stress that comes with the job, and you have a recipe for inefficiency. But things don't have to be that way, especially when you know some fun team building games.

Everyone needs to take their minds off work once in a while. Give your team a much-needed respite away from the stress of work with these fun group games which you can have at the office.

Team Drawing – This is an excellent ice breaker which helps participants to relax in the company of the team. To do this, divide members in groups of three or more (depending on the number of participants) and hand them the drawing materials. Ask each member to draw a line on a blank canvas and pass the drawing to another person to continue it. You can give a time limit for drawing to each person. At the end of the exercise, ask teams to show their drawings to the whole group.

Lean on Me – To play this game, you need to separate participants into two rows. One row of participants will be blindfolded and will face the other row. At the signal of the facilitator, team members will lean on the people at the opposite row. This activity helps build trust, and it's best to rotate everyone to see which pair shows great confidence in each other.

Touch the Pot – Being in physical proximity with another person can be awkward for some people. This game challenges team members to break down their barriers and helps them communicate better at work. Divide participants in equal numbers and ask them to stand in the four corners of the room. Place a clay pot at the center of the room and at your signal, the participants will run to the center and touch the pot with only one finger. Watch how team members scramble toward the pot and have fun while doing so.

Team Quiz – This game aims to enhance communication and teamwork. Prepare questions about a variety of topics. Divide players into different groups of up to 5 members. Each team will try to answer as many questions as they can on a time limit.

Scrambled Jigsaw – This fun game is easy to begin with, but wait until the participants get to the last part. You need to place a jigsaw puzzle on the tables for the teams before they arrive. Use children's puzzles for this game. Ideally, there should be about 100 pieces on each puzzle. Take away 5 pieces of the puzzle and transfer them to another team's table. Do this for the rest of the puzzles. The teams will complete their puzzles and when they start to notice that some parts are missing, they need to negotiate with the other teams to have their puzzle pieces back. This activity is an excellent exercise for communication and cooperation.

Take a break away from the stress of the workplace. Use with these fun team building games for the office to give your team some time to unwind and have fun.

Source by Brian Cavette

ABC's Of Team Building – F Is For Fun And Functionality


When one thinks of team building activities the word "fun" comes to mind. Some examples are the marshmallow challenge, Two Truths and a Lie, and Trust Fall. More elaborate activities are half or full day retreats off-site that include water games, building exercises, etc.

Regardless of the exercise used, the idea of ​​team building is to have fun but also to function as a means for others to learn more about themselves as well as their teammates. Some leaders may negate fun as wasteful time but in reality having fun actually makes for a more creative environment. Children are always developing new things when they free play. They may create fortresses out of items around the house or imagine fairies or super heroes living in castles they made with sand. They also delegate tasks to each other and may even select a leader. Whatever they choose, they keep their minds open to new possibilities. Unfortunately over time though their lives become more structured so creativity decreases.

The objective of team building activities then is to encourage everyone to "let their hair down" and reveal more of themselves to others in a non-threatening setting. Exercises should have minimal instructions so that the participants can try different methods and let everyone make suggestions. Team members will learn things about each other that they never knew and will hopefully have a better appreciation for each person. They may also identify similar areas of interest that they did not know before ie certain genres of books they read, an interesting hobby, etc. which helps with bonding within the team. The point is that they get to spend time together in a non-threatening environment where the outcome of the activity is not as important as the interaction between the team members.

So for that reason when evaluating team building activities, you must consider also that these exercises should increase trust within the team, improve one's confidence, and lay the foundation for better communication back in the office. They should also reinforce the values ​​and mission of the organization. Free flowing of ideas through team building exercises may seem unconventional but some of the greatest products and services came from these types of activities, so they should be considered a priority when assessing human capital development. A few other things to think about are – what levels within the organization participate or are they segmented by department, frequency of these activities, and / or measurement of their effectiveness.

Source by E. Elizabeth Carter

What Are the Goals and Objectives of a Team Building Workshop?


In any Organisation, and at any level, a facilitated Team Building workshop can be a possible route to improve the Team and to foster high performance. A Team is a powerful entity, as we know from sport. A high performing Team not only achieves success, but also has dynamism and an energy that nurtures individual high achievement and a high degree of job satisfaction.

The Overall Objective

The overall objective of any Team Building Workshop should be that your Team is further down the road towards achieving the status of a high performing Team. This is a useful theme for the workshop, as it keeps the Team thinking forward to where we want to be, and planning how we can get from where we are now to the forward vision.

This fundamental objective gives us a framework that should be part of any Team Building Workshop –

1. Where are we now?

2. Where do we want to be?

3. How will we get there?

This framework can be used on a Team Build Workshop to address either or both of the 2 separate branches of the Team’s goals and objectives –

1. The Team’s objectives regarding our Team purpose, our Team goals and performance targets

2. The Team’s objectives regarding our Teamwork, how we effectively we work together to achieve our Team purpose and objectives

Both strands will come together at the end of the Team Building workshop, in the form of strategies, plans and actions to take us forward.

Team Purpose Objectives and Goals

When addressing our Team Goals and achievements in a Team Building Workshop, it is useful to begin with a fresh look at your Team purpose and where it fits in the Organisation purpose. It is also important to identify the Organisation’ strategic goals and the goals the Organisation has given the Team, as this is our context.

The objective in a Team Building Workshop then is to ask ourselves –

1. How well placed are we to achieve our Team Goals?

2. What are our strengths as a Team? What have we got to achieve these goals?

3. What is blocking, or preventing us from achieving?

4. What do we need to improve or develop to achieve success?

Our Goals in terms of Teamwork

Teamwork is the way we work together to achieve our goals. It includes our values, attitudes, relationships, and Team processes. The key to removing blocks and moving forward in a Team is to identify what PROCESS can we use to improve on this issue? There will always be a Team process that will improve relationship issues, effective work practices or blocks to high performance.

To move forward as a Team, it is useful to think in terms of Tuckman’s Stages of Team Development. This will give us a good objective framework to identify where we are, and where we want to be.

In the Team Building Workshop, the Team can –

1. Review and assess their current Stage of Team Development

2. Identify their future vision, where we want to be as a Team. This involves both a vision and clearly identified goals.

3. Identify clear short term goals, the next steps we must achieve to move them to the next level

4. Plan how we will do this, strategies and actions to achieve those next steps.

Planning the Team’s Way Forward

Taking the 2 strands of goals together, the Team can sift out the mission critical areas for future development. A good Team Building Workshop should finish with a brainstorm and planning session so that the Team has a plan for improving each specific issue. They leave with action plans and new Team Processes to enable the Team to work effectively together.

Source by Kate Tammemagi

Team Building & Multiple Intelligences


Team building and multiple intelligences, to many people, have as much similarity as a company dinner and an i.q. test. if you are new to multiple intelligence, the following is a brief explanation:

The Theory of Multiple Intelligences

The Theory of Multiple Intelligences surfaced in 1983 when Dr. Howard Gardner’s renowned book titled, “Frames of Mind: The Theory of Multiple Intelligences” was published. Within the next 10 years, educators world wide embraced the theory as a basis to identify talents in the children they work with.

Before that, most people perceived people to be intelligent if they score high in an I.Q. test or other psychometric tests, or are good with logical thinking, mathematical, musical and perhaps, linguistic skills. In his book, which has been described to have caused paradigm shifts, Dr. Gardner identified 7 distinct types of intelligence:

1. Linguistic Intelligence

The talent to learn and use languages, it includes the ability to effectively use language to express oneself rhetorically or poetically, using language as a primary means to remember things. Poets, writers and translators are people with high linguistic intelligence.

2. Logical-Mathematical Intelligence

The capacity to analyse problems logically, performs mathematical operations, and scientifically investigate issues. Scientists and mathematicians are some examples of people with high logical-mathematical intelligence.

3. Musical Intelligence

Skills in the performing arts, composition, and appreciation of music. It also includes the capacity to recognize and compose musical pitches, tones, and rhythms. Examples of people with high musical intelligence are: musicians, composers and singers.

4. Bodily-Kinesthetic Intelligence

The use of one’s whole body or parts of the body to solve problems. It is the ability to use mental abilities to coordinate bodily movements. Some examples of people with high bodily-kinesthetic intelligence are carpenters, seamstresses and chefs.

5. Spatial Intelligence

The potential to recognize and use the patterns of wide space and more confined areas. Designers and architects are people with high spatial intelligence.

6. Interpersonal Intelligence

The capacity to understand the intentions, motivations and desires of other people. People with well developed interpersonal intelligence tend to work effectively with others. Some examples are educators, religious and political leaders and salespeople.

7. Intra-personal

The capacity to understand oneself, to appreciate one’s feelings, fears and motivations. People with high intra-personal intelligence have a good idea of what they want to do in life, what they can and cannot do and when to get help. Some examples are high achievers and entrepreneurs.

Brief History of team building

No one can be sure how the term “team building” was formed or when team building first started. The term “team building” is probably the combination of the words “team” and “building”, which means “building a team”. team building could have started as early as the 1930s, when Professor Elton Mayo’s research in The Hawthorne Experiments (1927 to 1932) concluded that the need for recognition, security and sense of belonging has a greater effect on workers’ morale and productivity than other working conditions.

Today, team building can mean different things to different organisations. To some it may simply mean building cohesion among participants, while to others it may mean improving communication and sharing of information between departments.

So How Does Multiple Intelligence Help

team building?

Multiple intelligence has been widely applied to children, particularly in the early detection of talents and gifts in children. So does the theory of multiple intelligence still hold true among adults? Are we able to apply the theory to adults? We began to ask these questions a few years ago when we were helping clients with their team building exercises.

Over the years, we have successfully conducted team building sessions for many corporations, using multiple intelligence in our games, to bring out strengths of different people in different situations, creating an environment to promote mutual respect, understanding and patience with adult participants.

Organisation may define team building in different ways, yet one very basic reason for team building is to get the participants to acknowledge the importance of teamwork and appreciate that people are different.

Dr. Sandy E. Kulkin, founder of Institute for The Motivational Living, Inc, USA (the world’s largest publisher of DISC personality profiling system) once said, “People are different, but they are predictably different”. Dr. Sandy is an expert in human behaviour and he develops courses, trains and certifies professional trainers in behavioural analysis for personal and business settings. He is a firm believer that in order for us to be better able to work with one another, we need to understand why people behave in the way they do and how they look at things differently from us.

Thus in our view, if we can help participants realise that people are different and see these differences as strengths in the other person, we will be able to help them learn to celebrate the differences, thereby creating mutual respect.

Understanding multiple intelligence helps broaden our perspectives of the people around us. In the context of team building, it uncovers the types of intelligence fellow team mates possess, which may never surface within the office setting. This brings about better understanding among the participants.

Exposing participants to multiple intelligence during team building also creates an environment in which participants share their knowledge in the type of intelligence that they possess with their fellow colleagues; it helps participants to be patient with one another as they take turns to learn from one another.

It can also be a humbling experience when we realise that there are other types of intelligence which may not be well developed in us. Introducing multiple intelligence during team building can also help participants become conscious that if we work as a team, we will be well-equipped to tackle different issues and problems as people who are more developed in different areas of intelligence tend to look at different aspects of an issue. These people will also be better at solving different challenges that the team face.

Here are some of Dr. Howard Gardner’s books on Multiple Intelligence:

o The Arts and Human Development (1973)

o Art, Mind, and Brain: A Cognitive Approach to Creativity (1982)

o Frames of Mind: The Theory of Multiple Intelligence (1983)

o The Unschooled Mind: How Children Think and How Schools Should Teach (1991)

o Multiple Intelligences: The Theory in Practice (1993)

o Changing the World: A Framework for the Study of Creativity(1994)

o Intelligence: Multiple Perspectives (1996)

o Intelligence Reframed – Multiple Intelligences for the 21st Century (1999)

Source by Alvin Quah

The 5 Building Blocks of an Effective Team


It is important to recognize some of the symptoms of a poor performing team. They include but are not limited to:

  1. Ambiguity, poor miscommunication and confusion. That leads to…
  2. Rework or sloppy work, missed goals. That leads to…
  3. Loss of customer trust and satisfaction. That leads to…
  4. Loss of sales, and that leads to…
  5. Lower revenue and a suffering bottom line.

If poor performing teams directly impact the bottom line, why does the issue go unaddressed in some organizations? In my years of working with organizations, I’ve seen THREE primary reasons.

First, the manager is at a loss for dealing with the team at an individual level. There are two reasons people change – they are moving toward pleasure or away from pain. If the pain is not bad enough, things stay status quo. Same with moving toward pleasure. So if one person on the team is not motivated in either direction, they simply will not change.

Second, addressing team functionality doesn’t make the high priority list. It’s seen as ‘fluff’ or ‘extra’. I’ve seen organizations in fire-fighting mode and never get to a place where they can oil the machine because they’re too busy dealing with the breakdowns. But the breakdowns will always happen until they pause for some regular maintenance.

Third, it happens slowly and is not noticeable until it’s a problem. Let’s say someone starts showing up for every meeting just 3 minutes late. That becomes accepted by the group. In fact, others know the meeting won’t start on time and so they show up 5 minutes late. That becomes the norm. Then someone starts coming 7 or 8 minutes late. From the previous 5 minutes, it is a slight slip, hardly noticeable. Now 8 minutes late becomes the new norm. The norm continues to shift until one day someone notices that meetings always start 15 minutes late. What started as a very small shift of 3 minutes slowly morphed into the new norm of 15 minutes late.

Over time, the trajectory shifts slowly but surely toward a new direction. Like a rocket with its power boosters pointing in the wrong direction, the team slowly drifts off track if a course correction is not made.

To build an effective team, it all starts with trust.

  1. TRUST. If team members don’t trust one another, they cannot engage in respectful debate. This is necessary for…
  2. HEALTHY DISCUSSIONS and cultivating new ideas. When teams engage in productive, respectful debate, they can move to the next level of effective teams which is…
  3. COMMITMENT. When each person committed to the success of the team, not their own individual success. Once each team member knows that everyone is committed to the team, each person has…
  4. ACCOUNTABILITY. Members on a team hold themselves, and their team mates, accountable for their actions. This leads to the desired…
  5. RESULTS. Desired results are simply a symptom of trust, healthy discussion, commitment and accountability.

A baseball team is a good example of a highly functioning team. The pitcher doesn’t need to look over his shoulder to make sure the second basemen is where he is supposed to be, or that the outfielders are paying attention. Each player knows the individuals are committed to their positions and can focus on their own job for the success of the team.

Source by Leigh-Ann Zaharevich