In his book “The Five Dysfunctions of a Team,” Patrick Lencioni identifies the heart of dysfunction as a lack of trust.
So, how do we build teams that trust each other, particularly in a hybrid environment?
The first step toward achieving confident cohesion is to help your team members connect with one another on a personal level.
While this is challenging enough to accomplish in person, it is even more difficult when some members of your team have not and may never meet in person.
You can try ice breakers or play a game over Zoom, but scrambling to pick a fun fact or discussing irrelevant topics won’t help anyone open up.
Like any good coach knows, you must do everything in your power to help them bond as a team.
This isn’t easy, especially not in person, but fortunately, you don’t have to do all the work.
To accomplish this, you must identify the right questions to ask your team members, and then listen with the intention of understanding rather than merely responding.
These questions can range from generic to specific, and from professional to personal.
Since everyone is unique in unlimited ways, it might take time to discover each person’s Goldilocks zone for how much they are willing to open up, but discovering that sweet spot and listening with care will create an all star player out of a rookie recruit.
The key is to have a plethora of questions at the ready, and to make the time to have meaningful conversations.
It doesn’t matter if you’re having a one-on-one meeting, or a full team discussion.
What matters is that the person you’re talking to understands how important they are to the team’s success.
One of my favorite quotes goes, “There is nothing so great as the glint in a person’s eye, when they feel they have been truly heard and understood.”
My question to you all is: do we listen enough? Are we intentional and mindful in our communication, be it in-person or virtually?
My guess is that we all have more work to do, but seeing that glint in a person’s eye is worth every ounce of effort.
Related articles that can help you build trust:
Conversation Tips to Enhance your Presence
Own your Confidence: Overcoming Nervousness in HIgh Stakes Situations
The Greater Impact of Truly Listening