Imagine my horror to discover that I have not blogged about it, nor defined it for you! So here goes:
As a team leader, it is helpful for you to keep these three elements in balance: Achieving results (certainly), but also using a smooth process and maintaining collaborative relationships along the way. When you have these three elements solidly in place, then you have a high performing team.
I like to use a visual of these three elements with each representing a leg of a tripod.
When one element is lacking or is not up to par, then you have an imbalance – and that’s where dysfunction occurs. When too much focus is put on achieving results, the relationships suffer and (process) mistakes happen. Over the long term, the team simply burns out.
When too much focus is on creating process, you have a lot of motion but not a lot of progess. People get tunnel vision focusing on the way the work needs to be done – and process is always in a state of continuous improvement – so relationships suffer and the results are typically behind schedule.
When too much focus is on maintaining relationships among team members, you have a great environment and people love to come to work – at the expense of getting great results and lack of process consistency.
All three elements (results, process, relationships) need to be firmly established for a team to succeed. I call it “the team trifecta” – a run of three wins for a grand slam!
Kristin Arnold is a professional meeting facilitator who is passionate about teamwork, hence founding Quality Process Consultants, Inc. a consulting firm focused on building extraordinary teams in the workplace. You can read more of her work in one of her books Team Basics, Email Basics, Team Energizers, or Boring to Bravo.