The Five Dysfunctions of a Team – Accountability by Patrick Lencioni

“Help Your Employees Develop Humility”

organizational health is key!

Patrick Lencioni JAN 2016

trust and conflict

“When there is trust, conflict becomes nothing but the pursuit of truth; an attempt to find the best possible answer.” –Patrick Lencioni via Dave Kraft

Are You Being Clear?

Good morning! Another beautiful day and it has been a good week at Life Action as all of our staff from across the country, Canada and the Dominican Republic are together this week. 

Are you being clear to those you lead? is there alignment in your organization? Do people really know where you are headed?

Patrick Lencioni makes it clear in his book, The Four Obsessions of an Extraordinary Executive, just how important clarity is in our organizations. He suggests that we be able to answer clearly and succinctly the following six questions:

1.Why do we exist?
2.How do we behave?
3.What do we do?
4.How will we succeed?
5.What is most important, Right now?
6.Who must do what?

Then after answering the questions, we need to develop a “playbook” with the answers that the leadership team keeps with them all the time. The playbook should be short and to the point. Just a few pages.

Question for you – can you answer those six questions for your organization?
Grace & peace to you today!

Are Meetings Frustrating You? Try Three Simple Things

Good morning! I hope you had a great day celebrating Independence Day yesterday.

For many people, next to e-mail overload, unproductive meetings are one of the most frustrating aspects of organizational life. There are several good book out there on the subject with my favorite being Death by Meeting by Patrick Lencioni. But instead of rehashing his book (click here to see some of his tools) I am going to share just a couple of things that really make a difference for me.

First – decide what you are really wanting to accomplish in the meeting. What is the ONE thing you want to walk away with at the end of the meeting? Write it down and even put it on the top of your agenda.

Second – after you build your agenda, cut it in half! Force yourself to truly rank order the topics and only deal with the most important half of them. And then, spend more time arriving at better decisions on the most important issues.

Third – after cutting your agenda in half, then assign time frames to each agenda item and stick to the time! Force discipline into your meetings.

Try these three simple things for a few meetings and see if the quality of your meetings improve. You might be surprised.

Have a blessed Thursday!

Six Questions You Should Be Able to Answer

Does your team have the clarity they need to accomplish their mission?  Does your organization have the clarity it needs to move towards mission accomplishment?  Too often the answer is no.

In his book, The Advantage, Patrick Lencioni gives six critical questions that every organizations should be able to answer.  If you can answer these questions then you will be moving towards creating clarity that will bless your staff and help you move the organization towards mission accomplishment.  By the way, jargon, slogans, meaningless words or fancy language are not allowed!  Keep it simple and real.

The questions:

1. Why do we exist? Successful and enduring organizations understand the fundamental reason they were founded and stay true  to that reason.

2. How do we behave? This should be embodied in your core values and be the ultimate guide for staff behavior at all levels.

3. What do we do? This is the simplest of the six – what is it that you do?  Define it clearly.

4. How will we succeed? When you answer this question, you are essentially setting your strategy.

5. What is most important, right now? Determine what is THE priority right now, not priorities.  Too many organizations have 7, 8 or more “top” priorities.  You need to determine what single priority is most important, right now.

6. Who must do what? Do you leaders / staff really know who is responsible for what?  Or is there some confusion?  Maybe multiple people thinking they are responsible for the same thing?You need to clarify roles and responsibilities.

If you can answer these six questions with your leadership team, then you are well on your way to achieving clarity within your organization in a manner that will propel you towards mission accomplishment.

Blessings on your Thursday!

Do You Really Have a Leadership Team?

Do you really have a leadership team?  Most of us do in name, but do you in actuality have a team?

In his book, The Advantage, Patrick Lencioni says that in reality what most of us have are leadership working groups – not teams.

Think about it this way – a working group is similar to a golf team where the players go off and play their own game and then get together at the end of the day to tally up their scores.

A real team is more like a basketball team where everyone is playing simultaneously in a mutually dependent way and even interchanging roles. And if one player is not performing up to their potential, then the team suffers.

Most of us in reality have working groups of leaders who come together to represent and advocate for their areas in a joint meeting instead of a team where leaders come together around a common goal and with a focus on the greater good for the overall organization.

Moving from being a working group to a highly functioning team is an intentional choice and is a lot of hard work – but worth it.  If you are a leader in a church or ministry, you owe it to those you lead to build a team and to not be satisfied with simply a working group.

The basis to having a healthy organization is to have a healthy leadership team.  Without a true leadership team that is healthy, you will not have a healthy organization.

Tomorrow is Good Friday, take time to meditate on the sacrifice made by Jesus Christ upon the cross that paid the penalty for our sins.  What a wonderful, outrageous act of obedience and love. We are truly a blessed people.  Take time to praise Him.  Tomorrow is Friday, but Sunday is coming!


What Kind of Leadership Team Do You Have?

Imagine two different organizations with two different leadership teams:

The first is led by a leadership team whose members are open with one another, passionately debate important issues, and commit to clear decisions even if they initially disagree.  They call each other out when when their behaviors or performance needs correction, and they focus their attention on the collective good of the organization.

The second is led by a leadership team whose members are guarded and less than honest with one another.  They hold back during difficult conversations, feign commitment, and hesitate to call one another on unproductive behaviors. Often they pursue their own agendas rather than those of the greater organization.”

Where would you rather serve?  Which one describes your leadership team?

The above quotes are from Patrick Lencioni’s newest book The Advantage that has just been released.  The entire focus of the book is on organizational health which he says is THE issue in the success or failure of an organization.

It is an outstanding book that I highly recommend.  I will post a few more times on the book this week.

Blessings on your day!  I hope that you are setting your heart and mind on the significance of what Christ accomplished on the cross and the incredible hope we have in His resurrection!