How to lead a team

Have You Got All The Parts Of The Equation For Success?

 [WCHeadline]How To Lead A Team a Effectively[/WCHeadline]

Clean Language questions are fast becoming the most effective way to change thoughts into action. This site is dedicated to sharing what our team and other leaders have discovered when they had their thoughts reflected back.

 [WCSubHeadline]Have You Got All The Parts Of The Equation For Success?[/WCSubHeadline]

How to lead a team effectively

I was at the Step by Step Listening team meeting recently when it got me thinking. No surprise there then?

We were considering what we would like to have happen in the business this year.

I don’t know about you, but I enjoy having these thoughts, planning ahead, thinking big makes me feel like things are moving forward. The future for me always seems a little brighter after this thought process.

As the discussion unfolded I was reminded of a challenge I had faced in previous teams and here it was being overcome with the Clean Language questions.

As I watched the team unravel what was holding them back from delivering a clear and consistent message about what we do at Step by Step Listening I noticed they were establishing all the 3 elements of the success equation. Whereas in previous meetings I had attended often only 2 of the elements were consistently addressed.

The equation DO x BE = HAVE, is an old one but I suddenly realised that clean language conversations in a team established the ‘Be’ effortlessly or at least it seemed so on the surface.

It was quite amazing watching each team member become consciously aware how they need to be and able to articulate to the other team members what kind of support or resource they might need to make that happen.

In my experience the leaders know what they would like to have and they have some ideas what they need to do.

But they rarely have the skills and strategies to tackle how they and their team need to be.

This idea of how do I need to “be” is often the hardest of the three to understand and manage.

Who you are “being” now is at least in part why you are here right now.

If you now extend this thought to include how to lead a team effectively then the concept of you needing to know how the whole team need to BE can seem like a mammoth task. One that many leaders avoid because it can be daunting and seem too complicated.

Then what happens?

People say all the right things in the meeting and spend more time complaining to others outside of the meeting.

What if you did not need to be aware,  you just had to ask the right questions so they become aware?

Understanding the ‘BE’ need not be scary if you approach the subject with a set of questions that can give clarity and focus to your thoughts.

*Step 3 Set up

Has proven to be one of the most effective ways to get a team on board with how they need to be. The questions are designed to focus your attention and for the person to take ownership.

[WCSubHeadline]How to Lead a Team Effectively[/WCSubHeadline]

These questions can be used to set up a meeting, a one to one discussion or even a whole project.

As a leader if you set the vision, ‘x’ is what we would like to have happen?

For ‘x’ to happen this year/meeting/project/discussion needs to be like what? (Answer A)

Ask yourself before the meeting or project to prepare yourself or you can even ask every member of the team. Some leaders send this out as preparation for the meeting.

For Answer A to be like that YOU need to be like what? (Answer B)

It is worth noting that you are encouraged to trust the first response, then ask yourself a couple more questions about a few of the words, phrases or metaphors you are drawn to.

Anything else about……?

What kind of ….is that….?

For You to be like (B) and the …….to be like (A) is there any other kind of resource or support you need?

As I watched Sheryl facilitate the team what I observed is that when team members said things like I need to let things settle for a month, she did not react emotionally. I know having talked to her that is because she had worked out that for this project to be a success she had to allow her team to find their own way and how she needed to be was okay with everyone doing it their own way and not her way.

I asked her afterwards what was happening for you when a team member said “she would need to let it settle for a month?”

Sheryl said ” Inside I am frustrated because we have some urgency about this project, but this process has taught me to listen to the team and I know that really her wait a month is not necessarily the same as mine.

I have worked with this member of the team and I know no amount of pushing or demanding commitment to deadlines will work.  She will and does bring some great questions to the debate that challenges those of us that will go out and do something straight away and she invariably delivers exactly what we were looking for without verbally committing in the group.

A few days later their was some indication that action was being taken therefore understanding what works for this team member paid off.

[WCSubHeadline]How to Lead a Team Effectively[/WCSubHeadline]

When you can hold back your opinions and judgement when you ask questions to understand you will create a team that can:

  1. Contribute openly and honestly to any discussions without fear you will judge or discount their ideas.
  2. Explore their thinking and unravel what is holding them back
  3. Solve their own problems at work
  4. Ask for the support and resources they need
  5. Plan their next best step with confidence
  6. BE x DO = Have
Thank you for listening
Shaun Webb
The Directors Confidant
Please do share what is happening below, how do you achieve the ‘be in your team?
We love to listen.

This is a site dedicated to sharing and raising aspirations of whole communities if you have found it useful please share how to lead a with your friends.

*Thank you to Cailtin Walker and Nancy Doyle of for sharing the set up questions so generously.


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