Building a Championship Team- Part I

Business success team

(Photo courtesy www.flickr.com)

By Travis Guida

Gossip. Envy. Pride. Misunderstanding. Sounds like the makings of a best selling novel right? What it doesn’t make is a best selling team. Ineffective teams come in all shapes, sizes, ages and abilities. To form a competent one, all a group needs is to be organized. To form a championship team, people need strong leadership, chemistry, and undeniable determination.

All teams operate under the same principles. Champions have a similar pedigree. They are unified, share a common vision, communicate clearly, and are passionate. We’re not only talking about the corporate world. These rules hold true for executives, Boy Scouts, college athletes, faith-based organizations, students and more. Willing to expand your leadership, improve group dynamics, and form a Championship Team? Read on….

What is a Championship Team? We find examples of teams everywhere, but what makes the good ones stand out? Is it having the most talent? Certainly, talent doesn’t hurt and is often required to reach the top. But we argue that it is not a pre-requisite. In 1990, the Minnesota Twins baseball team owned the worst record in their division. How, might you ask, did they go on to be the winner of 95 games and a division championship the following year with virtually the same roster? Unity. What guided these 25 men was the fact that they bought into a core set of principles and exhibited one shared purpose. Their success wasn’t luck or raw talent. Their raw talent led them to finish last. Chemistry and a deep bench led them to win the World Series in 7 games.

A Championship Team achieves what it sets out to achieve. It may not always mean finishing first, but these people become self-actualizers. They will reach their fullest potential. The tools to get there are simple, but committing to these principles is not.

Unity

“Team Building” in some circles, is passé. Call it whatever term you want, but in order to be a Champion, your team must develop relationships. They must be unified. What causes a breakdown in unity? Dave Ramsey, in his book EntreLeadership sums it this way: “Your team will only be unified when they are willing to give up personal glory or gain for the good of each other and the good of the cause.” It is critical to establish rewards and recognition for achievement, but to look at it through the lens of the team’s goals. Champions realize that all members of their team are equally important, and that all great teams have great depth (remember the ’91 Twins?)

Teams diverge for any number of reasons. Keeping a team unified takes intentional decision making by its members.

 
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