Teaching Essential Elements
One of the primary roles of the High Perfomance Team Coach is to teach the newly forming team about the behavors that set High Performance Teams apart from other teams. One technique is to list each essential element on a sheet of flip chart paper, explain the element, and tape it on the wall of the team meeting room. This will help keep the elements in front of the team as it works towards meeting its objectives. Each element should receive its own page so that the text can be written large enough to be seen across the room. If technical support is available the elements can be printed using a graphics program such as Freelance or Powerpoint and printed on three by four foot paper.
The elements should be taught right after the team has reviewed its charter and its initial agenda. When teaching anything to anyone its important to keep in mind that learning goes through three separate steps: Hearing, understanding, and believing. For most people these three steps do not occur at the same time. Therefore the coach should expect to have to cover this material at least three times over the weeks that the team meets and works together.
All of the essential elements work together to build team and teamwork. Still the coach needs to deeply understand that even when the team exhibits high performance team behavior and seems to understand and value the importance of the essential elements, they will not work without an underlying environment of trust. So in addition to teaching High Performance Team essential elements that coach must always work to help the team build trust in one another and trust in themselves. Teams learn to trust by working together, accomplishing results together, celebrating successes along the way, and through trust building exercises.
Copyright (C) 1996-2002 Donald J. Bodwell. All rights reserved.