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The senior team of any organization is like the foundation of a house. It is constructed to carry the structure above that is seen while resting appropriately on the bedrock of talent that truly supports the organization’s success.
Shared commitment is like the reinforcing bars placed in that foundation.
Lack of shared commitment among the team can compromise the integrity of the foundation and put undue pressure on the bedrock, causing the visible structure to show signs of distress. Even more things are revealed to be true about the reinforcing of that foundation when extreme external forces put added pressure on the bedrock or structure. Things can quickly crumble or fall.
Here are some questions to ask yourself that may help you as a leader as you look to build greater shared commitment:
Does my team have a clearly communicated and shared plan? Just because the team is marching in tight formation does not mean they are going in the right direction. Shared commitment is often fueled by a solid strategic plan that has been developed by the team and feeds into the mission and vision of the organization.
Do my team members have an observable, deepening mutual respect for one another? Shared commitment is often anchored by relationships. It is true, tough times often bring out the real character of an individual and organization, but it is in everyday exchanges that the ability of an individual and team to navigate those times is formed. The relational muscle and respect within your team is developed in the repetitive interactions of the team members. Diligence around everyday norms and interaction among team members is not an area most teams spend time working on, let alone recognizing as important.
Do my team members really support one another and the mission? Shared commitment is often observable in the way you see people respond when a part of the foundation is beginning to show distress. Your leadership team will be put under stress. There will be visible cracks at times. The true measure of deepening shared commitment is that it supports those times with selfless sacrifice.
Many senior teams are comprised of high-performing individuals that often have a record of strong success. Their individual success can often be the biggest barrier in willingness to support, or even be aware of their interdependence. Figuring out, as a leader, how to build a leadership team with a culture of introspection, candor, and transparency is key to helping your team organically support and self-repair when a part of the foundation is stressed.
Want to know how to get started building a high-performance team? Click the link and download our free ebook Top 3 questions every senior leader should ask their team.