Healthcare is commonly understood to be a team sport that requires high-functioning teams to ensure success. Without these teams, patients can suffer worse outcomes and experiences, indicating that a well-oiled team is mission critical. Organizations do not luck into great teams - they are made and supported through established processes and systems. Specifically, great teams are enabled when they have a compelling direction, strong structure, supportive context, and shared mindset.
Having a compelling direction means that everyone on the team is working towards achieving a shared goal. This goal provides direction for the entire team and can be supported by intrinsic or extrinsic motivators. Engage with all members of the team to establish a goal from the bottom up and ensure all voices are heard. Utilize team-building tools such as PCVS to facilitate the provision of a compelling direction to your team.
High-performing teams are further achieved through a strong structure, meaning that each member has a distinct purpose to being on that team and adds unique value. Having too many team members with overlapping strengths, weaknesses, and purpose can lead to groupthink and deter creativity. Systematically create your team based on the determined goal to best support achieving it.
Once teams are created and moving towards a shared goal, they need the necessary resources, tools, and support to achieve that goal. It may seem simple but ensure your team has the basic elements required to do the job - technology, training, supplies, and anything else. Additionally, create systems that motivate employees to be high-performers that will contribute to the team. Use tools like asking “What Matters to You?” to learn what motivates each individual on your team, and use those factors as incentives to drive success.
For continued success of teams a shared mindset is of pivotal importance. This allows us to understand and recognize that we are all working towards the same goal and are on the same team. Any disagreement or divergence in thought only helps to make a better result and does not come with the intent to move the team backwards. Members of teams can better understand this when they understand each other, proving to be a place where asking “What Matters to You?” in these instances can be helpful.
While teams are made up of individuals with a diversity of thought, experiences, and abilities, dysfunctional teams only emerge when the system the team operates in fails them. To ensure a high-functioning team every time, work needs to be done to create a system that enables and promotes success. By using these four pillars to orient your team around, as well as tools like PCVS and “What matters to you?,” high value and reliable teams can be created and sustained.
April 22, 2022