“Ideal team players possess adequate measures of humility, hunger, and people smarts. They have little ego when it comes to needing attention or credit for their contributions, and they are comfortable sharing their accolades or even occasionally missing out on them.
“Ideal team players work with a sense of energy, passion, and personal responsibility, taking on whatever they possibly can for the good of the team. Finally, they say and do the right things to help teammates feel appreciated, understood, and included, even when difficult situations arise that require tough love.”
-Patrick Lencioni, The Ideal Team Player
The human element is one of the biggest costs to an organization. Hiring, training and retaining people drains the financial and emotional coffers in a hurry. Further, people, more than the work we do, make the difference in loving or hating a job.
As an immature supervisor, I remember being annoyed by performance issues and workplace politics. I lacked the understanding of the team dynamic needed for a positive and productive working environment.
The Ideal Team Player lays it out in a way that is both understandable and easily applicable. If you’re looking for the “ah-ah” moment of hiring and performance management, I highly recommend this book.
The text teaches about hiring team players (read: ideal employees), how to be one, how to coach current employees toward becoming as much, and also how to create an environment that is blissful for those willing to engage and not so fun for those resistant to it.
Gandhi said we should be the change we want to see in the world, so let’s first look within, by assessing ourselves.
This assessment is written by Lencioni and can be found on pages 192 and 193 of the Ideal Team Player.
Use the scale below to indicate how each statement applies to your actions on the team. Respond as honestly as possible, as this will allow you to most accurately identify any area of development that you may have. (Note from columnist: You can use this to assess your team mindedness in your marriage, work, volunteer groups or any relationship that is important to you.)
3=Usually 2=Sometimes 1=Rarely
My teammates would say:
___1. I compliment or praise them without hesitation
___2. I easily admit to my mistakes.
___3. I am willing to take on lower-level work for the good of the team.
___4. I gladly share credit for team accomplishments.
___5. I acknowledge my weaknesses.
___6. I offer and accept apologies graciously.
___ Total Humility Score
My teammates would say:
___1. I do more than what is required in my own job.
___2. I have passion for the “mission” of the team.
___3. I feel a sense of personal responsibility for the overall success of the team.
___4. I am willing to contribute to and think about work outside of office hours.
___5. I am willing to take on tedious or challenging tasks whenever necessary.
___6. I look for opportunities to contribute outside of my area of responsibility.
___ Total Hunger Score
My teammates would say:
___1. I generally understand what others are feeling during meetings and conversations.
___2. I show empathy to others on the team.
___3. I demonstrate an interest in the lives of my teammates.
___4. I am an attentive listener.
___5. I am aware of how my words and actions impact others on my team.
___6. I adjust my behavior and style to fit the nature of a conversation or relationship.
___ Total Smart Score
Remember, the purpose of this tool is to help you explore and assess how you embody the three virtues of an ideal team player. The standards for “ideal” are high. An ideal team player will have few of these statements answered with anything lower than a “3” (usually) response.
• A score of 18 or 17 is an indication the virtue is a potential strength.
• A score range of 16 to 14 is an indication that you most likely have some work to do around that virtue to become an ideal team player.
• A score of 13 or lower is an indication that you need improvement around the virtue to become an ideal team player.
Finally, keep in mind that while this tool is quantitative, the real value will be found in the qualitative, developmental conversations among team-members and their managers. Don’t focus on the numbers, but rather the concepts and the individual statements where you scored low.
Want to learn more? Grab the book and join a group of us studying these concepts once a month for the next three months.
The Montrose Rotary Club is hosting the series and it is open to the public. Meet us 8 a.m. tomorrow Oct. 18 (short notice I know!) in the Centennial Room off City Hall, 433. S. First St. Enter on the east side of the building. For more information go to montroserotary.com. Coffee is free and delicious!
You don’t have to read the book to engage in the conversation, though I highly recommend reading it at some point. If you’re uncomfortable joining a large group, email me ahead of time and I’ll be happy to make you feel welcome.
Chelsea Rosty is the director of business innovation for the City of Montrose. She can be reached at email@example.com.