In a former life as an executive in the industrial chemical industry, as with any team, our team had a group of leaders with very different personality styles (as measured by tools like Myers-Briggs and DISC). As the most optimistic and big picture focused member of the team, the value of the team was never more apparent to me than when our most deliberate and skeptical member, who often made me nuts, saved me from making mistakes that could arise from not considering more angles. Many times Tim would frustrate me by his need to go over mundane details before getting on board, but every once in a while he would ask a question like “But have you thought about this” that would hit the mark and force me to reconsider. Despite the frustration, Tim hit the mark with that question often enough that his value to the team was obvious. Tim was never going to be the star of the show for us, but his ability and tendency to see pitfalls that neither I nor other team members could see often helped us make better, more thoughtful decisions. Tim’s contributions reinforced for me and our entire group the immense value of teamwork.
Pendant’s newly formed leadership team met for the first time a couple of weeks ago. We agreed that part of our routine would be to choose a book that all will read in time for the next monthly meeting, at which we will discuss what we learned and how it pertains to us. Two of the important questions at the moment are what does it mean to be a successful team and why does teamwork matter? For this month, we chose Patrick Lencioni’s “The Five Dysfunctions of a Team”.
If you’ve never read the book (I’m on my third reading of it) and you’re interested in team dynamics, please read it. Lencioni is a master at writing fables that engage while teaching. Reading this book doesn’t necessarily imply that you’re on a dysfunctional team, but it will open your eyes to possibilities for increasing the effectiveness of your team, especially if you’re willing to do the work.
For Pendant, the formation of this leadership team is another step in our evolution as a company, a team, and as individuals. I expect that our discussion of Lencioni’s ideas will be spirited, and we’ll emerge from the experience having addressed some of our weaknesses and having polished some of our strengths. Whether you’re a client or a supplier, you’ll benefit from the outcome. I’ll share some of what we learned in a future post. For now, look for us to keep improving as we work side by side with you. We think you’ll like what you see.