Four letter words have gotten a bad reputation. I’m sure you can think of a handful of them right now. There’s one four letter word, however, that equals communication, camaraderie, and results. It has the capability to be extremely powerful, yet it often struggles to reach its full potential. It often causes friction, friendship, and frustration, all at the same time. What is this powerful four letter word? TEAM.
You’ve probably seen or heard the acronym for T.E.A.M. (Together Everyone Achieves More). Why then is it so hard to create effective, high performance teams? Because teams are made up of individuals, and individuals are imperfect.
I’m often asked how to improve teamwork, resolve conflicts, and improve communication among team members. There is a pretty straightforward formula that is simple in theory, yet extremely difficult in practice:
ACCOUNTABILITY + COMMUNICATION + PERSONAL LEADERSHIP = SUCCESS
The moment we start owning our actions and behavior, communicate effectively, and demonstrate personal leadership, we can accomplish anything, individually or as a team. Let’s take a look at each piece of the equation.
Accountability: While this has become a business buzz word, it simply means taking ownership, knowing that you can’t control anyone else’s behavior but your own. Playing the victim does nothing but frustrate yourself and others. If you focus on what you can control, YOU, it is much more productive.
Communication: We all communicate in our own unique style. Most people don’t try to intentionally miscommunicate, yet poor communication is the number one culprit of dysfunctional teams. Listen to understand, ask questions, adapt to others’ communication style, and most importantly, assume people have the best intentions.
Personal Leadership: Act with character and integrity, regardless of what other people do, and you’ll be a lot happier and more productive. Most of us know when we’re doing or saying something that is less than praise worthy. Would your mother be proud of your behavior? If not, it’s time to re-evaluate.
Teamwork is not just a skill. It is making conscious choices of our behavior and our attitude. It requires patient, persistence, and practice. Not all four letter words are bad. Some can equal phenomenal success!
For more information or to book Anne Pritchard Grady, an Austin motivational speaker, to speak at your event, click here.
About Anne Pritchard Grady
Anne Pritchard Grady, an Austin motivational speaker represented by the Austin Texas Speakers Bureau, works with organizations around the country to maximize organizational culture, build leadership, and improve communication. Previously, she was the Director of Training and Development for one of the Nation’s most prestigious Country Clubs and Resorts and has also been a Corporate Trainer at one of Fortune Magazine’s top rated Mutual Fund Companies.
Anne has been a University instructor and currently works with the professional development department at the University of Texas. She holds a Master’s Degree in Organizational Communication from Texas State University.
As a parent of a special needs child, Anne has become an advocate and volunteer with NAMI, the National Alliance on Mental Illness, where she speaks to educators, health care professionals, and other businesses about childhood mental illness. She is also actively involved with Early Childhood Intervention programs throughout the state.