I just finished reading two books that changed what I think about teams and how one should lead them. If you read these books, it will change your mind on these things as well.
Both books are by Pat Lencioni. Recently, I attended the Gazelles Growth Summit in Dallas to recharge my batteries. During this event, Pat certainly charged my batteries with his keynote address that covered the content of these two books. Moved and inspired, I walked right up to the bookstore at the summit and bought both of them.
The first book is The Ideal Team Player, which he just released. This business fable (with the core content reviewed in the back, just all his previous books) walks the reader through the three core virtues a team player must have to be a great team player and a great member of teams.
Ideal team players must be humble, must be hungry, and must be smart about dealing with people. Furthermore, the book goes on to explain both how to hire people with these virtues, and how to build them within the members of your team so they can become better team players. In today’s world as technology progresses and eliminates the need for many special skill sets, teamwork becomes increasingly important.
Get it. Read it. Put it into play, and improve your company’s teamwork capabilities.
The second book, The Truth About Employee Engagement, is an older book from 2008. Also like his new book, it is also a business fable. This book outlines what a leader must to do get individuals engaged in their jobs, even if the job is a mundane, unexciting job (which quite frankly are the kinds of jobs most people have).
Leaders have to remind each team member how a particular job is relevant and makes a difference to someone else, whether that person is a customer, co-worker, boss, vendor, etc. This gives meaning to the job. Second, the leader has to help the team member learn how to measure the impact on the person(s) whom is being impacted (hint it isn’t a financial measure or productivity measure). Finally, the leader can’t let his team member live in anonymity with him; he must interact with teammates in ways that lets them know he knows and appreciates who that are. Become a better leader by getting the book.
One other key learning point, and I misquote Pat Lencioni here, but “Sometimes we need to remind people more than we need to train them.”
Finally, anyone interested in having and Executive Briefing on these two important books? Contact me. I’ll put one together that you can attend online.