Team alignment and effectiveness

Building purpose-led, high-trust teams to achieve
high performance and continuous transformation

Purpose-led, high-trust teams form the key to high performance and continuous transformation. In other words: to win, and do so consistently, you need to believe as a team that you have the ability to win. What’s more, the team leadership needs to persuasively articulate their thoughts and beliefs on this ability. But every team is to some extent myopic – which is why, to achieve such a winning mindset and track record, having “other eyes” that help you reflect is an indispensable instrument.

“Our coach has put us well on track for the future by making the team, the individuals within the team, and the dynamics tangible and clear. My team members described the team coaching sessions as ‘uncomfortably sharp.’ And that is exactly what we needed.”

- CEO of a consultancy firm

At NGL our cyclical focus is on the combination of a team’s purpose, safety, inclusivity, resilience, collaboration, and accountability as they aim to achieve the desired results. Ideally, it starts with the configuration of the team—with a focus on the necessary skills, expertise, experience, potential and personal attributes. The next steps are alignment, building trust, execution, and renewal. Once the circle is complete, we return to review the design of all these elements. Especially at the higher levels in an organization, the need for our trademark “ruthless compassion” is evident. Time is money, after all, but most of the time we find that the required skills and talents are, in fact, already there.

Our team coaches act as facilitators of an open and productive discussion. They help leadership team members articulate a shared vision and purpose, identify common values, and develop a focus based on ongoing relationships. It is here, for example, that we play the role of the “probing” other eyes. We assist individual leaders as they learn to speak up about the unspoken, uncover blind spots in the team’s focus and knowledge base, and reach out to activate the deep drives and motives to make meaningful collaboration possible.

“Bringing a new team together is exciting but has lots of pitfalls, especially when the expectations are high and need to be addressed promptly. The team coaching sessions with NGL were intense and quite challenging – that’s what me and my team needed to get things going. At the end, I’m proud of what we have achieved. “

- BU Director of a multinational in Chemicals

Let’s talk about… how to develop a leadership team

The most successful teams are those that connect, communicate, and collaborate towards the achievement of a singular, inspiring goal or task. It’s the role of an effective leader to know how to develop such individual strengths and redirect them, to realize the results that are latent their collective potential.

However, when applied in real-world contexts, team development can get tricky, and teams easily get derailed. One point continually emerges in studies and business research as pivotal for leaders to understand: when a team’s cognitive, motivational, and behavioral resources are appropriately aligned with the demands of the task at hand, the team is effective.

Effective team development is its own reward

Structural and strong team development is an essential element of any successful organization. Throughout the five stages of developing a team—forming, storming, norming, performing, repeat/adjourning—leaders will witness a number of key developments, both positive and challenging. At the positive end this includes, most notably:

  • Increased trust. Through their team development, your leadership team members will have plenty of opportunities to build rapport, with a foundation of acceptance. When people trust one another, they’re more likely to share ideas, collaborate effectively and make the best decisions for the project and the company—and for everyone involved.
  • Improved communication. Suboptimal communication can lead to lower morale and missed opportunities for growth. Good communication is a sine qua non for success. With proper development, communication even becomes a core element of the team’s make-up, increasing its ability to innovate and create.
  • Increased productivity. The act of team building has many benefits, but its core purpose is to enable individuals to work together and produce something great. Achieving goals may not be the end-all for a team’s track record and future prospects, but not achieving them will, indeed, end all.