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The "I" in Team

Contrary to popular belief, there is an “I” in TEAM and it is a key element to achieving results, but “I” requires trust to unlock TEAM potential.

But How?

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Together Each Achieves More occurs when the barricades of self-erected walls are removed.

Easier said than done, because that means team members no longer feel the need to have to self-protect concerns over shortcomings, skill deficiencies, or being blamed for past mistakes.

It’s where asking for help is not viewed as incompetence and attending team meetings is not a dreaded event.

It’s a culture where people stop trying to avoid spending time together, because they enjoy working with each other!

Why is it critical that team members trust each other?

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Teams that cannot be vulnerable to each other and honest about who they are, will spend more time and energy managing their self-protecting behaviors and “politics” than focusing on the important issues to achieve results.

Teams that trust each other are more likely to engage in conversations that matter. For example, having open dialog and conflict around ideas to achieve results. Teams that trust each other are more likely to commit to decisions and hold each other accountable.

These attributes of good teamwork are possible when each member of the team can come to a place of appreciation and understanding about the value of others’ knowledge, skills, and abilities. Here is where a TEAM can encourage the best in each other and tap into that secret sauce for competitive advantage!

Building the type of trust where members are willing to be vulnerable to each other requires spending meaningful time together and cultivating healthy relationships. It starts with assessing the current state of your team and implementing an effective development plan based on proven methods for success. Assessments that measure team-based trust and are followed by facilitated training & development sessions can increase understandings about what the assessment reports mean to help teams cultivate trust for better working relationships.


However, cultivating a great team begins with a courageous leader who is willing to demonstrate vulnerability first and establish a safe environment where mistakes are viewed as learning opportunities rather than punishment. It takes a courageous leader, who has vision for creating a great team – a team that can make better decisions, tap into the talent of all members, focus on the right issues for conversation, create value, and overall, is just more fun to work on! The courageous leader recognizes that a great team is not born overnight, but through planned interventions of meaningful time spent together, trust can grow and members can unlock potential to achieve amazing results!

Self-Reflection Questions:

  • What is the number one thing that if changed, would encourage your TEAM members to trust each other more?

  • Who can release the “I” (individual) from self-erected walls of protection within your TEAM?

  • Who can unleash your TEAM’s potential for achieving amazing results together?

  • As much as it depends on you, what will you do to help cultivate trust with your TEAM?

© 2015 Copyright Dr LauraAnn Migliore

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