Building high performing teams

Published on October 31, 2021   8 min

A selection of talks on Management, Leadership & Organisation

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Hello everyone. This is Gordon Curphy from Curphy Leadership Solutions. This is "Building High-Performing Teams".
Leadership can be defined as the ability to engage and develop employees, build high-performing teams and achieve results. Every significant human achievement is the result of collective effort. If you look at iPhones, Tesla cars, Netflix, Tik-Tok, Uber; oftentimes, individuals get credited for creating those products. For example, if you look at iPhone, Steve Jobs gets all the credit, or Tesla cars, Elon Musk gets all the credit. But in reality, there was a group of people working together to create those products. Leadership is a team sport. Engagement in and of itself is not enough to create superior results. We can have a group of people who are very engaged with the tasks that they're doing but if they're not working in an aligned fashion, if their efforts are not aligned, then chances are they're not going to achieve superior results.
Before talking about how to build high-performing teams, I want to set the stage a little bit about organizations and teamwork. Organizations are made up of dozens of thousands of teams. A rough rule of thumb is to take the number of employees in an organization, multiply it times 0.2, and that will give you some estimate of the number of teams in an organization. If you have an organization of 100 people, you'd probably have 20 teams. If you have 1,000 people, you may well have 200 teams, but organizations are made up of lots of teams. Now what's important is that all organizations want teamwork. There was a study done a year or so ago of Fortune 500 companies. They asked the companies just to share, what their corporate values were, what the company felt were important. They got the list of those corporate values from those companies. Then looked at how frequently do different terms occur, different values occur. What they found was that the number 1 value, the most frequently cited value across organizations was integrity. But number 2 was teamwork. All organizations want teamwork. But the research is pretty clear in that only one in five teams are high-performing. This is a very intriguing thought in that organizations are made up of dozens if not thousands of teams. All organizations want teamwork, yet 80 percent need some sort of help.