How To Create Courageous, High-Performing Teams
Have you ever noticed that all the best things in life need courage? Courage is a prerequisite of becoming your best in any area of life, personal or business. In working with entrepreneurial leadership teams I’ve noticed that there is a common trait of all great leadership teams. The great teams do hard things that require courage, the mediocre teams ignore the hard work.
It takes courage to implement The Entrepreneurial Operating System™. We force you to come face to face with all the issues in your business. The great teams step up and do what is necessary to become their best, the mediocre ones avoid hard issues.
The Courageous, High-Performing Team
I’ve notice that courageous and high-performing teams deal with people issues head-on. They fight for the greater good of the business instead of letting egos control their destiny. The best teams make decisions that make their hands sweat. They let go of employees who are high performing but not a Core Values fit. They let go of people who don’t GWC™ their role even if they love them.
One of my clients had an issue with an account manager who was an extremely high performing individual. The account manager was responsible for near 20% of all company revenue and the clients were very happy. You might say “sounds good to me, don’t mess with the profit!”, however, this person was not a Core Value match. They would gossip and complain about the leadership team, complain about other employees, and laugh at how “stupid” their clients were.
The result of these behaviors was that the other employees were frustrated and annoyed, they wasted time talking about what was wrong with the company and the client. The culture of the business became toxic and marginally productive as a whole.
It Takes Total Commitment for the Greater Good
After implementing EOS® and making a commitment to the process, my client decided that it was best for the business to have a 30-30-30 conversation with the employee. It was a very difficult decision to make. They were afraid that the account manager would leave and they would lose 20% of their business in a single day. Mediocre teams would avoid the conversation and take the cash. But not this client…they addressed the issue head-on.
They scheduled the meeting with the employee and had a 30-30-30 conversation. My client was so nervous to have the conversation, they literally wrote out the script beforehand and read it to the employee. They used the People Analyzer, the Accountability Chart, and the scorecard to have the discussion. They gave specific examples of each Core Value violation during the conversation.
The response from the employee was that results are the only thing that matters and Core Values is a useless exercise and refused to change. The employee was terminated right there.
In the long run, the company took a short dip in revenue as a result of the account manager leaving. However, in less than 3-months, they doubled the accounts, increased overall revenue by 50% and increased profits from 18% to 32% in a single quarter. Clients remark on the complete culture shift of the entire firm. The collective performance of the organization more than overcame the temporary loss.
High-Performing Teams Deal with Hard Issues Head-on
Courageous teams are as afraid of addressing issues head-on as anyone else, but they do it anyway. They are more afraid of the status quo than the prospect of not doing what’s best for the business. They are completely committed to running a world-class organization and they won’t settle for less.
The Common Responses to Low Performing Teams
Having completed over 700 full-day sessions with leadership teams, there are some common areas that require courage. Here are some of the common issues and how mediocre teams handle them:
- People Issues – having conversations with, letting go or moving people who don’t get their role, aren’t performing, or aren’t a Core Values fit. They create seats for people instead of creating a structure that allows them to scale and grow.
- Vision Issues – they allow leadership team members to “agree to disagree” with vital aspects of the vision and don’t fight to get on the same page.
- Data Issues – they don’t push to get everyone a number. They don’t want to force people to be accountable to a weekly number. They are afraid that if they put a number on someone they will quit or make them nervous.
- Issues with Issues – low courage teams fly the planes around the room and politic. They avoid the question of “who owns the issue”, they avoid answering direct questions directly. They would rather talk about the past or nothing at all instead of addressing the issue at hand.
- Process Issues – mediocre teams will allow people to job protect by not documenting their processes. They are afraid that if they document the process they would have to hold people accountable to follow them. Instead, they just don’t document anything.
- Traction Issues – these teams would rather run around doing busy work rather than focusing on specific goals and objectives. They never actually meet to go over their results in weekly meetings or even set goals in the first place. They aimlessly wander because the thought of setting goals and not meeting them is not something they are comfortable with.
Becoming your best requires courage. You must be relentless in your pursuit of running a better business. If you want to be comfortable, you’ll never create something great. What are you waiting for?
Learn How to Create High-Performing Teams
Google did significant research on the behaviors of high-performing teams. If you’d like to take the survey, to see if your team has what it takes, click the button below.
- Accountability Chart (4)
- Business Strategy (1)
- Clarity Breaks (1)
- Core Process (2)
- Core Values (1)
- Delegate and Elevate (1)
- EOS Client Profile (1)
- EOS Implementer (3)
- EOS Rollout (1)
- Focus Day (1)
- Grow or Die (4)
- Hiring an Assistant (2)
- Hitting The Ceiling (1)
- Kolbe (1)
- Leadership (5)
- M&A Fit (1)
- Optimize For Growth (9)
- Quarterly Conversations (1)
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