High performing teams are characterized by the sharing of responsibility, actively supporting and occasionally taking it in turns to lead. Team members are not only good at their job they aim to help colleagues rather than be in competition with them. This can be seen in how a high performing senior management team deals with budget cuts, prepares for an inspection, responds when one individual is over loaded or deals with crosscutting issues like Equality.
It may seem obvious but if a member(s) of the management team is only concerned with protecting their area of service, sees no reason to take responsibility for failings in another area of service, believes they have more than enough without taking on someone else’s workload, is relived the focus is on someone else, thinks they are the best and only person to deal with their own issues and generally seeks to keep the rest of the team at arm’s length then this is going to create conflict, disharmony and unhealthy competition. These are the characteristics of a dysfunctional team.
What makes high performing teams different is the individuals willingness to share the pain as well as the fame to put a great deal of effort into benefiting colleagues, in the knowledge they will do the same in return.
In the US of A they call this taking one for the team.
Blair McPherson author of Equipping managers for an uncertain future published by Russell House www.blairmcpherson.co.uk