Five Dysfunctions of a Team

Five Dysfunctions of a Team

The key to success is simplicity. Building a healthy team is not difficult, but it does require discipline and focus. Patrick Lencioni examines why effective teams are so rare in his book, The Five Dysfunctions of a Team, and offers specific recommendations for removing the barriers that lead to dysfunctional teams. The work of Lencioni outlines the causes of team dysfunction and what can be done to overcome each one.


The Behaviors of a Cohesive Team walks intact teams through a journey to grow in five areas: Trust, Conflict, Commitment, Accountability, and Results. The evaluation is an effective tool for tracking growth. The team will create a baseline for the existing situation by first conducting the evaluation at the beginning of the development activity. Afterward, conducting a re-assessment will give the team useful feedback about where they are progressing and where more effort needs to be put after they have learned and practiced new abilities.

The Secret to Successful Team Dynamics

  • Trust Each Other – The members of great teams have a core emotional trust for one another and are at ease being open and honest with one another about their flaws, faults, worries, and habits. They reach a stage when they are able to communicate with one another without any restrictions
  • Take Part in Conflict around Ideas – Teams with strong interpersonal trust aren’t hesitant to debate important concepts that are essential to the success of the company. They don’t hold back when it comes to challenging, questioning, and disagreeing with one another in the pursuit of the best solutions, the truth, and wise choices
  • Stick with Decisions – Even when different team members initially disagree, disagreement surrounding ideas helps teams establish commitment to outcomes. This is because they make sure that all viewpoints and ideas are presented, discussed, and taken into account, providing team members the assurance that no detail has been overlooked
  • Hold Each Other Accountable – One of the Behaviors of a Cohesive Team is accountability. Those who are committed to their decisions and performance standards aren’t afraid to hold one another accountable for upholding them. Additionally, they don’t look primarily on the team leader for accountability
  • Pay Attention to Achieving Group Goals – Team members are more likely to put aside their individual interests and agendas and concentrate on attaining collective goals if they have mutual trust, participate in conflict over ideas, commit to decisions, and hold one another responsible. They resist the need to put the communal outcomes that characterize team success ahead of their departments, professional goals, or ego-driven prestige

Each team member is given a DiSC behavior-style assessment as part of the Five Behaviors of a Cohesive Team. The findings are plotted on a single graph that displays each team member’s personality and behavioral “style” (Dominance, Influence, Steadiness, and Conscientiousness). A major factor in how people present themselves and interpret the words and actions of others is their personality and behavioral style. The team as a whole is able to collaborate more successfully by developing a deeper understanding and stronger appreciation of each team member’s style.

Due to its strength and rarity, teamwork is the ultimate competitive advantage. A team that works well together may realize its potential, which leads to a more wholesome and effective workplace. Beyond simply assisting firms in becoming more effective, strengthening teamwork is a crucial endeavor. Additionally, it lessens the stress and discontent of the employees in those firms, which has a significant effect on their friends’ and families’ life as well. Team members can get a feel of their particular strengths and potential improvement areas through the Five Behaviors of a Cohesive Team examination. It’s a tool that analyzes the dynamics of the team across the five core behaviors so that team members can determine what changes are required to become a higher performing team.


Every single one of us has at some point worked on a team. While some of these teams may have been enjoyable, successful, and effective, others may have been difficult, ineffective, or exhausting. While many teams get along well, a united team is where true success lies. The Five Behaviors Model of a Cohesive Team contains pertinent information packed with valuable content that can broaden awareness on how to perform more effectively as a cohesive team.

The Model’s Behaviors

Trust, Conflict, Commitment, Accountability, and Results make up a cohesive team. The model’s behaviors all support and build on one another. Team members can learn how they and the team are doing and how they can work together to become more cohesive by using the team profile and facilitated program.

  • Trust – Trust sits at the bottom of the pyramid. Without team trust, it will be very difficult to improve overall team cohesion. Building the relationships necessary to be able to resist and even profit from both the typical and particular problems every team experience requires the ability to expose one’s weaknesses, which is a crucial component of vulnerability-based trust
  • Conflict – Conflict is occasionally viewed as dangerous because it might result in animosity. However, if there is relationship trust inside the team, team members feel confident enough to be brave and honest. Conflict is helpful if there is genuine trust present. In fact, it takes confrontation to make sure that all viewpoints and facets of a subject have been aired, understood, and taken into account. Teams without conflict have a tendency to ignore important feedback, which can result in bad decisions
  • Commitment – The Five Behaviors Model contends that achieving consensus necessitates compromise which frequently leads to good outcomes. Clarity of purpose is necessary for commitment. Consider a situation where there are various solutions. The team choose which idea to pursue with trust and appropriate conflict. Even though only one concept is picked, each team member is aware of the decision-making process and supports the idea when speaking with those inside and outside the group
  • Accountability – Typically, the hardest skill for a team to grasp is accountability. Most teams won’t ever reach the stage where everyone habitually keeps the others accountable. Accountability will be much simpler if you get and maintain high scores in the earlier steps. Accountability may integrate into the entire dynamic of a team
  • Results – The team exists to accomplish its goals. Each team member is focused on attaining the team’s objective if all previous behaviors are effective. When the team aim takes precedence above any individual goal, everyone feels rewarded for contributing to the success of the group

The Five Behaviors Model is used to teach team members how to collaborate more effectively and efficiently and to grow closer as a unit. This is fantastic for team-building exercises, team growth, and team effectiveness. The five skills necessary for team cohesion are rarely accomplished. The team will cycle between the various behaviors when things change. Change frequently necessitates the team starting all over again and having to rebuild trust, working through each behavior once more.

Lencioni’s model has been written about by many teams. Teams are assisted in adapting the approach to their own team or teams through the Five Behaviors assessments. It is well worth the effort to create the most harmonious team possible. Participants receive tailored findings from The Five Behaviors Model that improve their comprehension of themselves and other people. They help teams navigate the challenging process of putting together a solid, effective team and its enormous payoff.


No matter what, all teams have the potential to be dysfunctional. Since they are composed of frail, flawed people, this is unavoidable. However, since the executive team sets the standard for how all employees interact with one another, addressing dysfunctions of a team and emphasizing teamwork are particularly important for any 0rganization. Thankfully, there is still hope. Contrary to popular belief, dysfunction has observable and treatable causes. Understanding that there are five team dysfunctions to deal with is the first step in decreasing politics and misunderstanding within your team. Then, deal with each one that applies one at a time.

The Five Dysfunctions are-

  • Lack of Trust – This includes unwillingness to open up to others in the group. The inability to be vulnerable with team members limits the development of trust. Teams lacking trust hide their flaws and failures, are reluctant to ask for assistance, assume the worst about one another, harbor resentments, and dread meetings
  • Aversion to Conflict – Preferring contrived peace to passionately constructive debate. The appearance of fruitful, ideological conflict is suppressed by the urge to preserve artificial peace. Conflict anxiety stems from a lack of trust. Employees in these firms are more concerned with personal risk management and politics than with problem-solving. Due to the avoidance of controversial themes, meetings are frequently boring
  • Lack of Dedication – Seeming to support collective decisions leads to ambiguity across the entire organization. Team members are prevented from making decisions they will abide by due to a lack of clarity or buy-in. Teams that avoid conflicts start to experience failure fears. These teams struggle with decision-making and constantly question their own actions
  • Avoid Taking Responsibility – Avoiding the obligation to confront superiors and peers about unproductive behavior that lowers standards. Team members are prevented from holding one another accountable for their actions and performance due to the need to avoid interpersonal unpleasantness. Second-guessing and a lack of shared goals therefore prevent performance standards from being created. Team members produce subpar work and miss deadlines
  • Neglect of the End Outcome – Putting one’s own position, ego, and achievement before the success of the team. The emphasis on group accomplishment is undermined by the pursuit of individual objectives and status. Teams that lack direction and defined goals experience team member stagnation, disengagement, and self-centeredness

Lack of trust is at the base of the pyramid and serves as the foundation for all five dysfunctions of a team. Although a lack of trust might have happened in any firm at any time, in today’s workplace it is more crucial than ever to foster trust among your team members.

It’s not difficult to build a healthy team, but it does require discipline and focus. With just a few questions and a personalized color-coded report, the online team assessment gives teams useful information they can use to address their most pressing problems and start seeing results right away. The pyramid of the five team dysfunctions demonstrates how one dysfunction feeds into the others. The best course of action is to look one (or two, or more) steps below to see if you can spot the root cause of any of the five dysfunctions that your business is experiencing. Starting with a foundation of trust can help avoid many other difficulties down the road, even though resolving organizational challenges is never simple.


An organization as a whole can be destroyed by dysfunctional teams. People’s time and energy are wasted on squabbling and pettiness, which effectively halts progress. Dysfunction eventually becomes the least of your concerns. Companies that are well-run don’t merely deal with conflict when it occurs. Before a conflict spreads to other areas of the organization, they strive to determine the core reasons of dysfunction and where team members are at odds.

Maintaining morale and productivity is critical, but doing so is also a crucial part of your staff retention plan. If they don’t see any change in the near future, even the most devoted team members will start looking elsewhere. Lack of trust or avoiding responsibility are common causes of dysfunction. Understanding the “where” and the “why,” in addition to the more evident “who,” is necessary to minimize dysfunction in teams.

What Makes a Team Dysfunctional?

The five characteristics of a dysfunctional team, as identified by noted author Patrick Lencioni, are as follows:

  • An Absence of Trust – Lack of vulnerability, which typically starts at the top, may be the cause of this. Trust is typically low among leaders who don’t exhibit humility or won’t recognize their ignorance. Team members are less at ease being open or candid because of the lack of trust
  • A Fear of Conflict – Trust promotes constructive conflict. Teams that build a foundation of trust are more likely to participate in conflict because they presume that everyone is supporting and working toward the same team goals and has good intentions. A strong team can disagree and then work together to find a solution. They also get better at averting future conflicts
  • A Lack of Commitment – If team members can’t agree and go forward with commitment, even healthy conflict becomes harmful. Even if everyone is not enthusiastic about the next steps; a functional team nonetheless functions with a sense of shared ownership since everyone is committed to the team’s stated objectives and larger mission
  • A Desire to Evade Responsibility – It’s critical that team members identify responsible people to follow through on whatever those next steps may be. Accountability may also be a characteristic of a dysfunctional team if no one decides who is responsible for a task and no one is held accountable for completing it
  • A Disregard for Outcomes – Without any of the mentioned qualities, it is impossible to continually produce positive results. A productive team continuously assesses, compares, and reevaluates how outcomes compare to objectives

Signs of a Dysfunctional Team

The characteristics of dysfunction have been discussed, although the symptoms aren’t usually immediately apparent. Before any of the reasons become significant issues, they can be festering below the surface. Be on the lookout for a few warning indicators of a dysfunctional team. See if choices are being made without consulting the parties who will be impacted. In the worst-case scenario, this could result in missed deadlines, duplicate labor, or both, which would be frustrating and resentful. When the highest paid person in office speaks first and loudest all the time, it silences the rest of the team and prevents healthy conflict. If people are consistently doing great, it could also be a warning sign.

A successful team is confident and trusting, not hesitant to voice its concerns openly, and vulnerable enough to acknowledge when things aren’t going according to plan without fear of punishment. The tone for these signs is typically set at the top, which is not surprising. Genuine harmony will be enabled, and leadership at all levels will be promoted by a leadership team that promotes equal contributions and models vulnerability.


Most people are intelligent, competent, and sincerely want to help. They are aware that working as a team will help them accomplish more. The solution is the Five Behaviors of a Cohesive Team. In the most approachable, competent, and efficient manner possible, it is an assessment-based learning experience that aids individuals and businesses in revealing what it takes to create a really cohesive and effective team.

Discovering what it takes to reach the ultimate competitive edge of a high performing team is made possible through the unique learning experience which is The Five Behaviors of a Cohesive Team. A set of leading-edge workplace evaluation tools has been used to create a ground-breaking program that has been proven to deliver business results. The team development program’s straightforward objective is to increase team effectiveness and productivity through knowledge of and use of The Five Behaviors. In the most approachable, competent, and efficient manner possible, it is an assessment-based learning experience that aids individuals and businesses in revealing what it takes to create a really cohesive and effective team.

How does this Program Work?

The program aids teams in comprehending their collective performance on the five core tenets of The Five Behaviors model: commitment, dispute resolution, outcomes, and trust. Based on the DiSC model, each team member will also comprehend their own personality style and the styles of their teammates: How each of these attributes contributes to the success of the team as a whole is described by the letters D, I, S, and C. The program is only intended for complete teams and workgroups. The Five Behaviors Model is used to teach team members how to collaborate more effectively and efficiently and to grow closer as a unit. A successful, well-functioning group:

  • works faster and has better decision-making
  • utilizes the abilities and viewpoints of all members
  • avoids wasting time and effort on ambiguity, dispute, and politics
  • prevents wasting time by repeatedly discussing the same themes and the wrong concerns due to a lack of buy-in
  • gives one a competitive edge
  • Is more enjoyable

Benefits to the Organization

Employees can work effectively together and feel like they contribute to the group’s success when there is a team environment at work. Employees that operate in a cohesive atmosphere put more emphasis on team goals than individual success and are inspired by the team’s efforts. In order to teach team members how to work together more effectively and to become more involved, Patrick Lencioni’s influential teamwork model and everything DiSC combine to create The Five Behaviors of a Cohesive Team.  This helps in –

  • fostering closer bonds and collaborative teamwork
  • Make the environment more motivating so that chores can be completed
  • reduce interpersonal tension and disagreement
  • Increasing group output

This program is suitable for usage with complete teams at all organizational levels. Successful businesses all over the world have embraced this program as a potent learning tool for effective leadership and team building. The objective of this team development program is to assist team members in comprehending, embracing, and putting The Five Behaviors into practice. The Five Behaviors of a Cohesive Team workshop participants learn what it takes to create a team that is genuinely cohesive and productive. These useful, results-driven training courses improve performance, effectiveness, and productivity at work. It has helped with challenges relating to leadership, generational differences, professional presence, and personal performance.


A concept and training program called The Five Behaviors Assessment of a Cohesive Team leads intact teams through the process of improving in five areas that are essential to effective team dynamics. Due to its strength and rarity, teamwork is the ultimate competitive advantage. A team that works well together may realize its potential, which leads to a more wholesome and effective workplace. Beyond simply assisting firms in becoming more effective, strengthening teamwork is a crucial endeavor. Additionally, it lessens the stress and discontent of the employees in those firms, which has a significant effect on their friends’ and families’ life as well.

Each team member is given a DiSC behavior-style assessment as part of The Five Behaviors of a Cohesive Team. The findings are plotted on a single graph that displays each team member’s personality and behavioral “style” (Dominance, Influence, Steadiness, and Conscientiousness). A major factor in how people present themselves and interpret the words and actions of others is their personality and behavioral style. The team as a whole is able to collaborate more successfully by developing a deeper understanding and stronger appreciation of each team member’s style.

The Five Behaviors of a Cohesive Team

Wiley Workplace Learning Solutions and bestselling author Patrick Lencioni collaborated to create The Five Behaviors. Through the comprehension and use of The Five Behaviors that are essential to productive team dynamics—Trust, Conflict, Commitment, Accountability and Results—it is a potent model and development program that increases team effectiveness and productivity. A concept and training program called The Five Behaviors of a Cohesive Team walks intact teams through the process of getting better in five areas that are essential to effective team dynamics.

The Five Behaviors Assessment of a Cohesive Team aids people and companies in discovering what it takes to create a really cohesive and effective team in the most approachable, competent, and efficient manner possible. The program aids teams in comprehending their collective performance on the five core tenets of The Five Behaviors model. The Five Behaviors Model is used to teach team members-

  • how to collaborate more effectively and efficiently and to grow closer as a unit
  • the possible ways to become a highly productive and effective team
  • to make better and quicker decisions
  • to utilize the abilities and viewpoints of all members
  • how to prevents wasting time and effort on pointless dispute, uncertainty, and politics
  • to prevent talking about the incorrect subjects and bringing up the same topics repeatedly due to a lack of buy-in

This behavior program gives team members a competitive edge and makes it more enjoyable for them.

It is possible to understand and put into practice the abilities of collaboration and how to develop a collaborative, cohesive team culture. The Everything DiSC self-knowledge assessment and Patrick Lencioni’s transformative approach are combined in the five behaviors assessment. It all starts with The Five Behaviors assessment, which measures how the team is performing in the five areas. This survey assists participants in determining their unique DiSC style and learning how each style contributes to the team. It is powered by everything DiSC, a personality tool with research-validated results.


Our contemporary workplace is always changing. As a result, creating a team that works well together may seem downright difficult. Teams rarely reach their highest levels of collaboration unconsciously. With a tested framework, relationships flourish and teamwork development and practice are easier, elevating your team and company to new heights. The Five Behaviors Team Development Assessment will change the dynamics of your team’s collaboration.

Patrick Lencioni’s best-selling leadership parable, The Five Dysfunctions of a Team, has helped thousands of teams improve over the past years. The main takeaway is straightforward: for teams to be as productive as possible, they must invest time and energy into developing trust, engaging in healthy conflict, making decisions, holding one another accountable, and concentrating on shared results. The Five Behaviors of a Cohesive Team Assessment is the one piece of equipment every team needs. This evaluation will serve as the basis for any team’s growth plan by having each team member respond to a series of inquiries about the current state of the team and how the team may improve. The assessment results are combined with an examination of how team member behavioral preferences and personality types influence team interaction as a whole, offering valuable insights that will aid in the development of true team cohesion.

The effectiveness of an intact team’s approach to teamwork is assessed through this potent online or in-person experience, which also aids team members in developing a deeper understanding of one another. In order to successfully accomplish their objectives, teams adopt a new framework for more effective team behaviors based on The Five Behaviors paradigm.

How Does Team Development Using the Five Behaviors Work?

  • It begins with the Assessment – The Five Behaviors assessment, which evaluates the team’s performance in five areas—Trust, Conflict, Commitment, Accountability, and Results—is the first step in the process. This evaluation assists participants in determining their unique DiSC style and learning how each style contributes to the team. It is powered by Everything DiSC, a personality tool with research-validation
  • Delivered Insights in a Customized Profile – Participants receive a customized profile after completing the assessment, which helps them better understand their own personalities, work styles, and those of others in their team. Teams will also discover how well their particular team is doing in relation to each of the five habits. The team can use these insights to develop action plans for areas that need development and gain a deeper understanding of their dynamics
  • Transform Your Team with the Help of the Effective Facilitation Experience – A certified expert in the Five Behaviors leads a one- or three-day virtual or in-person training program that serves as the facilitation experience. Through engaging breakout activities and group discussions, this training brings the insights from the unique Team Development profile to life and assists the team in putting the lessons learned into action on a daily basis
  • Tools for the Team’s Future Development – Teams can continue their learning and development through both the comparison and progress reports because developing a cohesive team takes time and constant work. The comparison reports are follow-up reports that underline The Five Behaviors’ significance for current and future team and individual interactions. Teams can compare and evaluate how their performance has changed over time using the progress report

It takes time and effort to change the way a team behaves. For this reason, each Five Behaviors Team Development Assessment comes with an unlimited number of progress reports. You are able to have each team member retake the examination at any point during your journey. The resulting Progress Report is an excellent tool for demonstrating your progress and assisting you in determining the following crucial issues to solve.


American business management author Patrick Lencioni is known for his books on team management in particular. The Five Dysfunctions of a Team, a well-known business fable that examines work team dynamics and provides solutions to help teams perform better, is the work for which he is best known. New York Times bestselling author and influential thinker Patrick Lencioni. Fortune magazine in 2008, listed him as “one of the new gurus you should know”. He is the creator of organizational health, which he refers to as “today’s final sustainable competitive edge in business.”

Patrick spends his time speaking and writing about leadership, teamwork, and organizational health as the president of the Table Group, a management consulting firm focusing in executive team development and organizational health, as well as working with CEOs and their teams. American business management author Patrick Lencioni is known for his books on team management in particular. He has worked with senior executives and executive teams in businesses ranging from Fortune 500 companies and high-tech start-ups to colleges and non-profits as a consultant and keynote speaker.

Additionally, he presents lectures on business culture, teamwork, organizational change, and leadership. He is frequently interviewed for articles in the Wall Street Journal and USA Today, among other national publications. He is “one of the most sought-after business presenters,” according to The Wall Street Journal. Lencioni has previously held positions at Sybase, where he served as vice president of Organization Development, Oracle Corporation, and the management consulting company Bain & Company.

His Works

The Five Dysfunctions of a Team, a well-known business fable that examines work team dynamics and provides solutions to help teams perform better, is the work for which he is best known. Mr. Lencioni is the author of ten business books to date, covering subjects including employee engagement, leadership, and organizational health. He is likely best known for The Five Dysfunctions of a Team, a 2010 New York Times Bestseller. His other publications include The Advantage (2012), The Five Temptations of a CEO, and The Ideal Team Player, which was published most recently (2016).

Patrick is the author of 12 books, which have been translated into more than 30 languages and have sold over 7 million copies. He has assisted executives and companies in tackling issues pertaining to teamwork, employee engagement, and organizational health. Nearly three million copies of his books have been sold globally.

When not writing, Patrick Lencioni advises with CEOs and their executive teams to assist them work together better in the context of their company’s business strategy. A wide range of clientele, including a mix of Fortune 500 businesses, professional sports organizations, the military, non-profits, universities, and churches, have benefited from the worldwide appeal of Lencioni’s leadership concepts. Lencioni also addresses tens of thousands of leaders annually at national conferences and organizations of the highest caliber.

Patrick Lencioni also addresses tens of thousands of leaders annually at national conferences and organizations of the highest caliber. He was recently mentioned as one of the most in-demand corporate presenters in the country in the Wall Street Journal.


For teams to be productive and perform well, teamwork is vital. However, creating productive, high-performing teams is not simple. To overcome team dysfunction, there are five practical strategies that can be taken.

Build Trust

To build trust, team members must feel comfortable admitting their own inadequacies, skill gaps, and awareness of their own need for assistance. The team must invest in shared experiences and a thorough comprehension of the individual strengths and weaknesses of each member in order to build trust. However, a team can quicken the journey toward high team performance by adopting a concentrated approach.

  • A team-effectiveness exercise should be planned. Ask each team member to list their most significant contribution to the group’s success as well as one area where they may personally improve in order to benefit the group as a whole as part of this exercise
  • To become more conscious of oneself and the effects one has on others, use a personality and behavioral preference profiler
  • Encourage the leader to go first so that they can authentically show their vulnerabilities. Team leaders foster a climate where vulnerability is acknowledged without being penalized by doing this

Engage in Constructive Conflict

The finest potential answer must be produced in the minimum time, according to teams that participate in constructive conflict around ideas. Such teams discuss and resolve issues more swiftly and thoroughly, come out of contentious discussions unscathed and prepare to tackle the next significant problem. To go about gaining this capacity and willingness to participate in constructive conflict-

  • In order to identify and resolve hidden conflicts, members of teams that prefer to avoid confrontation must bring them to the team’s attention
  • Team members need to be motivated to participate in constructive debate rather than to avoid it
  • When their workers are in dispute, they need to show restraint and let things work out amicably

Ensure Commitment

A few simple but effective tools and principles for ensuring commitment and overcoming team dysfunction-

  • Invite the team to openly examine important decisions and decide on the information that needs to be shared with employees about those decisions at the conclusion of staff meetings
  • When making judgments, establish definite timeframes and adhere to them strictly
  • Discuss the worst-case scenario for important decisions the team is having trouble making and come to an agreement on the backup plan
  • The group’s leader must persistently encourage resolution of all outstanding concerns

Ensure Accountability

By being honest with themselves and with one another, showing respect and having high expectations for one another’s performance, members of outstanding teams strengthen their bonds with one another. Following a few established management practices will significantly improve results:

  • Tell the team what they must do, who is responsible for what by when, and how everyone is to conduct themselves in order to succeed
  • Team members must frequently exchange information on how they and their teammates believe they are doing in relation to the goals and standards that have been set
  • The emphasis of reward structures must be moved from individual performance to collaborative success

Focus on Results

For a team to ensure that its attention is focused on results-

  • The team’s focus on results must be established by the leader as team members will follow the leader’s example
  • Teams are more likely to work passionately toward achieving particular outcomes if they are willing to openly commit to those results
  • Leaders must save praise and prizes for people who actually help the group achieve its objectives
  • Adopting common sense while exhibiting extraordinary levels of discipline and determination is the key to success

The trick to overcoming team dysfunctions is selecting the ideal team members early on and giving them the resources they require to perform their duties successfully. Even the greatest hiring practices can lead to dysfunctional teams, but preventing problems is much simpler than dealing with them.

Team Accountability

Accountability is the act of being responsible and having the authority to act. It also entails the natural and logical consequences for the outcome of those actions or inactions. Just as a team needs to be accountable, so should every team member be. It is not just the team leader’s responsibility to hold another team member accountable; it is in fact a shared responsibility.

Simple tips on how you can hold team members accountable

  1. Ensure that the goals are clearly laid out – Is your team aware of why it exists in the first place? Is every member of your team capable of expressing the team’s goal/goals? Have you taken the initiative to share a vision of the outcome that you wish to achieve? Strong leaders usually share a strong vision with their teams and they also do all that is necessary to align the vision and the team. It is important that your team’s goals align with your organization as well.
  2. Have clarity regarding the standards – Does every individual in your team have a clear understanding of their roles and responsibilities as well as those of others in the team? Have you decided to set some ground rules for your team? Every team has its own culture. But is this the culture that you wish? Is the prevailing team culture supportive of all team members? In case your team members have taken an Everything DiSC assessment, you may wish to review and discuss the group culture report. In case a team member is feeling marginal to the rest of the team, it may be contributing to his or her poor performance.You must ensure that you agree on who would be ultimately accountable for the results of your team. In some organizations, it is the responsibility of the entire team, while in others it is just the leaders.
  1. Conduct regular check-ins – You must schedule regular progress reviews of your team as well as that of the individual team members. Use this as an opportunity to celebrate achievements and also to identify and resolve issues. From time to time, it is a good idea to analyze the performance data available. You must ensure to commit to the five whys and be proactive to dig into problems and seek solutions as a team.
  2. Address any kind of slacking – In case you have set clear standards for your team, you will come to know when someone does not meet them. You must try to address this as a group. Get to the root of the problem and figure out if there is a lack of commitment, understanding, or trust. Also, try to find out if it is a process problem or a people problem. While you may want to avoid direct blame and punishment, it is equally significant that everyone understands the consequences of not meeting the standards.
  3. Build commitment and trust – Accountability is one of the facets of a cohesive team. It is built on the foundation of trust and commitment from each and every member of a team.

Building a Culture of Ownership and Accountability

As an organizational development and transformation firm, one of the biggest challenges we have seen in our clients is to instil ownership and accountability in their teams. Time and again, our focus has been to do away with the “micro-managing” mindset. According to me, fostering a culture of accountability in an organization requires a combination of employees taking ownership, fostering culture of accountability and cultivating high trust behaviours in the workplace.

To foster a culture of accountability, below are a few leadership tips to consider while implementing an effective accountability and ownership strategy in your workplace:

  • A high-performing leader doesn’t micro-manage others, they inspire others. Having consistency in their messaging throughout the organization helps develop trust which in turn helps in developing empowered and accountable individuals and teams. Consistency is the key here. Having consistent efforts in cultivating a culture of transparency and communicating the mission and values from top management, keeps people informed, up-to-date, and on track
  • Successful delegation happens when leaders or managers give their team members real authority to complete the assigned task. Providing meaningful ownership means giving team members the opportunities to have input and control over their own task, and the ability to freely share suggestions and ideas about their tasks, job and the business overall. An employee having the authority to make decision impacting their work and be accountable for the results – good or bad – is a true sign that your culture is moving towards ownership and accountability
  • A tool to measure results of instilling ownership and accountability in your team members is to have a performance management system that holds one and other accountable. For example, having a well-developed recognition and reward systems – with the emphasis on recognition – are a good way to acknowledge and appreciate those that take ownership and also helps send a clear message of what is expected. Opportunities for personal development enhance skills and supports accountability

Ultimately, developing a culture of ownership and accountability still flows from the top. The leaders in the businesses need to walk the talk.


Accountability in the workplace is all about establishing a common expectation and holding people accountable to it by clearly communicating the company’s mission and principles. Real accountability happens in a context where trust and honest engagement are encouraged. Genuine accountability demands both a new level of honesty to pinpoint areas that should be addressed as well as humility to restrain actions. Accountability is crucial, difficult to establish, yet attainable. However, in order to understand the significance of accountability in the workplace, it would be beneficial to start with the definition of responsibility.

Defining Accountability

Many individuals describe accountability in terms of what it isn’t, such as trying to “find” workers breaking the law, reporting coworkers, or creating strict rules that are implemented harshly. Instead of fostering a proactive culture of responsibility, this unfavorable technique encourages “management by rules,” a reactive culture. However, there is a superior strategy. A comprehensive knowledge of the organization’s vision, values, and goals is necessary to establish and uphold a consistent expectation among employees at work. Making all levels of employees, from hourly part-timers to C-suite executives, accountable for attaining organizational goals is referred to as “employee responsibility.”

While upholding accountability in the workplace is important, it must be balanced with the need to give employees independence in their duties. Employees must feel empowered to carry out their responsibilities in order to take ownership of their work and strive for greatness. The promotion of this culture of employee accountability is necessary to build a high-performing firm.

Accountability Challenges at Work

The importance of responsibility cannot be overstated, but it can be difficult to establish. Organizations and teams commonly face a variety of challenges and barriers when striving to foster a culture of workplace accountability. Sometimes, those who don’t perform are the ones who lack accountability first. At the level of the team or business, it can occasionally just mean “accepting the unpleasant.” Roles and responsibilities can become less obvious as a result of these poor organizational practices, which can undermine accountability if allowed uncontrolled.

If a company is run with murky priorities or unclear expectations, accountability at work suffers or entirely collapses. Expectations that are not shared have the ability to inhibit development. Relationship tension and task ambiguity are brought on by these hidden expectations. Naturally, this can encourage distrust inside the organization. Never undervalue the difficulty of a task or the level of consistency and follow-through it requires from management and employees. The obstacles and impediments are real and, for the most part, difficult to overcome. However, this does not mean that the effort is not worthy.

It is more difficult than we may think to hold teams accountable, thus we need to understand a few dynamics. It goes beyond results-based accountability, which is obviously important, but excellent leaders are aware that in order to acquire the support required to achieve the desired level of team performance, they need a culture of accountability in their teams. Holding people accountable is one of the most important and most challenging things a successful leader does to ensure organizational alignment.


Team Accountability refers to the group’s ability to keep its promises, complete tasks on schedule, and accomplish its objectives. Each person must take responsibility for their own part of the team’s accountability, including both long-term objectives and daily tasks. Accountability is the readiness to take ownership of our own behaviors. Without it, successful teams cannot flourish. Have you ever been a part of a group that consistently has unmet deadlines, broken pledges, or ambiguous expectations? Or did they continuously micromanage and bug employees? It’s likely that the team lacked an accountable culture.

Accountability fosters stronger working connections and more effective team collaboration. It also increases job satisfaction. As everyone is aware of their ability to rely on one another to complete tasks, it provides internal committee more control over their work and fosters stronger teamwork. Teams who have mastered team accountability hold one another more supportively accountable and have stronger performance discussions. It spurs action and improves performance, and it is inexorably linked to results and revenue. Increasing employee engagement can help businesses outperform their rivals and increase profitability. Teams frequently only talk about accountability after something goes wrong. It can be a term filled with negative meanings including worry, fear, and even disciplinary measures. However, it is not necessary.

Accountability is made to feel fair and non-judgmental by establishing mechanisms for team members, such as regular planning and goal-setting or rules for giving progress reports. It’s more about following a procedure that everyone has agreed upon than it is about a boss or colleague pestering you for information. You are accountable to the system, not simply to other individuals.

Does Your Team Have a Problem with Accountability?

Rarely is a lack of accountability on purpose. More frequently than not, it’s the result of a deeper problem, including a lack of clarity regarding roles and duties, scarce resources, a bad strategy, or unattainable objectives. This is why leaders who automatically appeal for team accountability frequently run into resistance and are increasingly irritated. To attack the problem with a leadership perspective might be a better course of action. The methods listed below can assist you in starting the conversation, determining the true issue at hand, and resolving it:

  • Make sure you aren’t contributing to the issue by first checking in with yourself. Reflecting in this way may help you identify any problematic tendencies that you may fall into. Self-awareness is a leadership super power
  • Second, schedule a conversation about the matter with the other individual, and start by getting their point of view. Prior to setting up a meeting, be aware of your tone once you have checked in with yourself and feel prepared to approach the subject from a place of inquiry. Then, after acknowledging their viewpoint, add your own
  • It is time to make it clear that your goal in initiating this conversation is to address the root of the problem and come to an agreement on a course of action now that you have discovered any underlying concerns
  • Create an execution plan, then decide how success will be measured. Set reasonable expectations with your colleague as you start to create your plan. This is the only method to guarantee that you are both in a winning position

The solution to your dilemma is not to demand greater team accountability. Anyone can voice their frustration with a problem, but those who are self-aware and empathetic not only find good solutions, but also create successful teams and lifelong friends. Change your perspective and put these actions into practice if you want to be a peer or leader at the next level that others truly want to work with. In the end, you’ll be responsible for better outcomes, more significant change, and a decrease in your own frustration.

How to Hold Team Members Accountable Using DiSC

Have you ever wondered how do we hold each other accountable? Can it be less difficult? In case you are familiar with DiSC, you may expect an individual with a strong S-style to have a tough time confronting other. But irrespective of our styles, we all find it difficult at times to confront others.

How different DiSC styles embrace accountability

In the context of teamwork, accountability indicates your willingness as a team member to call out certain behaviors or performance issues of fellow team members that may otherwise end up impacting the team as a whole. Having said that, it is understandable that you may be hesitant of the interpersonal discomfort that cannot be ruled out when you need to point out to a peer on his or her behavior. To deal with this discomfort, let’s take a look at how the different DiSC styles prefer to receive productive feedback from peers:

  • The ‘D’ style prefers to receive straightforward feedback from peers
  • The ‘I’ style prefers to hear a positive explanation
  • The ‘S’ style prefers considerate but direct feedback from peers
  • The ‘C’ style prefers a truthful but logical explanation from their peers

Many a times, team members are not quite comfortable applying appropriate pressure on their peers. However, when done in the right manner, it is indeed a highly effective means of maintaining high standards within a team. Let’s take a look at how various DiSC styles can be motivated to help improve their performance:

  • The ‘D’ style feels motivated by challenging projects and competition
  • The ‘I’ style feels motivated by positive encouragement and positive energy
  • The ‘S’ style feels motivated when provided with opportunities to help and support people and contribute towards the success of the team
  • The ‘C’ style feels motivated by defining quality standards and when they are able to complete complex assignments

It is also not uncommon for team members to react when they are confronted. So, it is best if you know how the different DiSC styles may react when confronted.

  • The ‘D’ style often needs a lot of convincing before you can get them to change their behavior or mind
  • The ‘i’ style does not want people to be upset or angry with them
  • The ‘S’ style is too eager to compromise and they may end up listening to the opinion of other people
  • The ‘C’ style demands facts and proof to accept that they are wrong before they decide on taking corrective action

Last but not least, you also need to be aware of how you can question the different DiSC styles about their methods and approaches.

  • With the ‘D’ style, try not to confuse their confidence with competence
  • With the ‘I’ style, try to be proactive and ask for detailed explanations pertaining to their approach
  • With the ‘S’ style, ensure to ask enough questions in order to figure out any concerns that they may have regarding their role or responsibilities
  • With the ‘C’ style, ensure to back your comments with facts and give them time to mull over your suggestions

Team Building Process in Organizational Behavior

Teams are an integral part of any organization. Building cohesive teams is a critical aspect and area of study in organizational behavior. A high performing and cohesive team ensure the success of team efforts, leads to greater innovation and contributes to a healthy work environment. With all these benefits, the process of building a high performing team has always been an area of organizational behavior study. Many thought-leaders have penned their thoughts on how to build successful teams. One such popular theory on how to build successful teams is the “Five Behaviors of a Cohesive Team model theorized by Patrick Lencioni.

In his study of teams Patrick Lencioni found that there are some common behaviors found in a team, which make the teams more productive and results oriented. He said that each of the 5 behaviors are connected to one another and do not work in silos, it’s a step-by-step process of working on one behavior that leads automatically to the next behavior and so on. These 5 critical behaviors for the success of any team are:

  1. Trust
  2. Conflict
  3. Commitment
  4. Accountability
  5. Results

The process of team building must take a team through the journey of starting by building trust and working the way up to results.

Let’s see what these 5 behaviors mean and how they are connected to each other.

  1. Trust – Patrick Lencioni said that the first factor to build a high-performing and cohesive team is Trust. To him trust is not just about faith in each other’s abilities, but vulnerability-based trust. Vulnerability based trust exists in a team when the team members are comfortable being truly transparent with each other to the extent of being open about mistakes and misses. The first step in building a cohesive team therefore is trust. Once there is vulnerability-based trust, a team is able to engage in healthy conflict around ideas, and this is the next step in the process of team building
  2. Conflict – Conflict here is defined as a healthy conflict that centers around ideas and does not get into personal attacks. According to Lencioni, one a team has trust, they are able to engage in healthy conflict around ideas. People feel comfortable expressing their views and disagreements without the fear that they will be misunderstood. The disagreements are also around constructive ideas and not personal issues. All this is possible due to the presence of vulnerability- based trust. A healthy conflict in turn gives a space for ideation, brainstorming and innovation. It also leads to greater commitment, which becomes the next step in the process of building a team
  3. Commitment – A team cannot function and achieve results without commitment. Most teams experience lack of commitment because team members feel their ideas and opinions are not heard, they don’t feel like they are part of the decision-making process. In the model by Patrick Lencioni, commitment is achieved as a result of conflict around ideas. In healthy conflict people share their views and opinions freely and after thorough debate, decisions are taken. Since everyone’s views are heard, they feel greater commitment to decisions because everyone now believes that their views were heard and after thorough debate, the best decision was taken. Team members are clear about the decision and what action needs to be taken, and this gives rise to accountability. Accountability is the next step in building a team
  4. Accountability – Another dilemma that most teams face is a lack of accountability. Most people feel a sense of limited accountability because they have not truly committed to the decisions. Accountability here is not just driven by the managers but by peers as well. Lencioni believes that when people truly commit to ideas then they also hold each other accountable, even peers, to ensure that commitments are met. This is a high level of accountability and leads to a team that is working on achieving common results. That is the last step in building a cohesive team
  5. Results – The ultimate goal of a high-performing team is to achieve collective team results. A team that has trust, is able to engage in healthy conflict, is committed and accountable, finally becomes a team that is able to focus on team results and achieve them. Team members don’t get side-tracked by personal agendas but understand the team results will finally contribute to their personal goals

If a team is able to work on this 5-step process and is able to incorporate these behaviors, then it will become a truly cohesive and high-performing team. The lack of even one of these behaviors will have a negative impact on the team results in the long run.

Team building tips workplace

Team building is the process of developing a group of individually contributing employees into a cohesive team. A team is a group of people that come together to work in coordination to achieve a common purpose or a goal. Studies show that teams that have a strong bond outperform groups that have weak bonds. Hence team building is not a trend that people can practice currently and let go in the future, it is a consistent practice that needs to take root in the organizational culture. The following are tips that are foundational for team building practices in an organization.

1) Team Norms

The baseline for team building is to set team norms. These norms guide the behavior of the team members and allow for professional relationships to blossom. This allows for better coordination and interdependency in the team.

2) Encourage Social Events

The team must be able to consistently engage in activities outside of work such as team lunch, potlucks, having themes for Halloween, hiking and so on. These activities must be organized at consistent intervals in order to ensure improvements in team cohesion.

3)Specify Goals and Roles

The common goal that the team is focused towards must be clear and the roles must be divided in such a way that there is no role ambiguity or overlap. Meanwhile, coordination and interdependency must be encouraged.

4) Effective Communication

Communication is the baseline for the effective functioning of any group and is essential for a team in the workplace. The members of the team must be encouraged to be perceptive of one another’s’ communication styles. As a norm unnecessary jargon must be avoided to benefit the goal of communication rather than allow for miscommunications. Communication is key for coordination within a team.

5) Decision Making

The team must be encouraged to make collective decisions and in order to do this communication is key. The manager must guide a few of the decision-making processes initially in order to ensure it remains objective and focused. As the norm is established, the team can independently make decisions without requiring supervision.

6) Acknowledge Individuality

Individual strengths and good performances must be acknowledged and appreciated. This can serve as an encouragement to other members of the team since this observation may lead to other members investing in developing their own strengths.

7) Feedback from the Team

Although there are many theories and practices established to promote team building, the managers must encourage feedback from the members of the team in order to align the team building practices according to their needs and preferences.

According to the 80-20 model, 80% of a team’s success is dependent on its cohesiveness and 20% depends on the process. Team building practices must be implemented such that they do not involve activities that would make participating members uncomfortable. Coercion into participation will lead to the opposite effect that team building aims to achieve. Team building, when practiced effectively, improves cohesiveness which motivates employees, increases productivity and brings profits to the organization.

Types of Team Building Activities

Team building training programs are the most common type of training. Cohesive teams contribute positively to the growth of the organization whereas having a dysfunctional team can actually cost money to the organization. Team building programs are designed to enable teams to work more effectively with each other. Here are some of the reasons why organizations undertake team building programs:

  • When a new team is formed, team building activities are recommended to break the ice and speed up the forming of the team
  • When an existing team displays dysfunctional behaviors that negatively impact performance, like lack of trust and unhealthy conflict
  • When a high-performing team wants to get to the next level and is expected to function in a challenging environment
  • When a common skill is needed to be developed in the entire team to improve the team performance

Here are the types of team building activities that are most popular:

  1. Outdoor Team Building Activities – These are the most common type of team building activities. Outdoor team building is largely popular since it is highly engaging, breaks the monotony of daily work and makes learning fun as it takes place in a non-threatening and motivating environment. Outdoor team building activities include:
    • Adventure sports like trekking, rapping, kayaking
    • Sports like football or cricket for the team
    • Outbound activities like a visit to a resort with fun games like treasure hunt, pitching the tent, cooking together activities facilitated by a trainer
    • Day outings with the team to connect outside of work, such outings are not facilitated by anyone but are meant for team members to relax and get to know each other better
  2. Indoor Team Building Activities – Indoor team building activities have the benefit of mixing learning and fun. While the focus largely remains learning, there are fun activities done indoors to engage the teams and bring about key learning. Here are some ways to conduct indoor team building activities:
    • Training program on attributes of an effective team with fun activities like tower building that test teamwork
    • Psychometric assessment driven training programs like using the Everything DiSC Five Behaviors of a Cohesive Team assessment to assess the current level of team-work coupled with fun activities to help teams build trust, engage in healthy conflict, drive commitment, accountability and results
    • Problem solving indoor activities like board games or a team simulation that tests and enhances the team behaviors in fun games done in a training room
  3. Social Drives – Teams can also learn, unwind and become more connected by undertaking social drives like teaching school children, working with differently-abled or elderly people. Such initiatives not only further a noble cause but also are great for the team members to bond and connect at a personal level.
  4. Corporate Talks – Another great way to enhance teamwork and promote motivation are expert sessions or talks conducted by well-known personalities. Such talks are highly inspiring and engaging since they come from real-life experiences that people are able to relate to. The duration of such sessions however should be shorter, like 1-2 hours.

Whichever type of team building activity you choose, ensure that you have a clear goal defined. The type of team building activity depends on the purpose for it, sometimes it is just about relaxing and getting to know each other but at times team building is also about addressing complex team challenges. The methodology used in team building should align to the purpose of getting the expected outcomes.

Team building helps in team cohesion

Teams begin to get cohesive after they go through challenges and experience challenging situations together. Bruce Tuckman stated that team building leads to group cohesion and best operation of activities. In the beginning stages, colleagues must be goal centered and stay away from conflicts. Getting to know each other, not just in the workplace, will make positive connections. Bruce Tuckman’s theory is adaptable and can be applied to business, sports or public administrations groups. While experiencing these stages colleagues become acquainted with one another and can offer help to each other when they must. That is what makes a group cohesive.

Impact of cohesion in the team

Great group cohesion will expand chances of achieving the target effectively with high performance. Group will be confiding in one another and supporting. That will make work done quicker and even more successful. Individual colleagues need to come together in the workplace and do their jobs and duties responsibly.

Mentors, managers and leaders need to place enormous input in bringing groups together. Firstly, the leader needs to pick the right people. They must be talented and have a good attitude towards working in a group and being positive about the work they are doing. You don’t need individuals who have capabilities and aptitudes, but have no willingness, attitude or want to carry out the responsibility and having it just for performance would not suffice the objective.

Stages of team development by Bruce Tuckman

The first stage identifies by Bruce Tuckman is Forming. It is where the group meets just for the first time and colleagues are mostly dependent on the group head where they get the greater part of the information from.

The second stage is Storming. This is extremely unstable stage when colleagues have enough information to shape their own thoughts regarding objectives and targets of the entire group. That is the reason some of them may battle for position or power with other colleagues and they may challenge the leader for position. At this stage it is significant for a leader to take responsibility for the group and keep them focused on the objective.

Stage 3 is Norming. In this stage individuals focus on the group and their responsibilities. There is a feeling of unity and bonding between colleagues and not much challenge for the leader.

A significant stage for the group is stage 4 which is Performing where group truly starts to work and show results through high performance. They can work positively towards objectives and resolve conflicts effectively in a constructive and productive manner. At this stage the group creates cohesion and builds positive connections.

Last (stage 5) is Adjourning. This stage isn’t frequently observed as a part of the principal theory, yet it is still a significant part to be examined. The fifth stage is when the group is no longer needed as the group’s objectives and targets have been accomplished effectively and colleagues need to go to different tasks or occupations. This partition could cause insecurity to some sensitive individuals if they had strong bonds between teammates. It’s important to manage this stage delicately to guarantee that colleagues can proceed onward to different activities without being sad.

The team development is going to ultimately help the organization in achieving the vision and goals which they have set for the teams. Overcoming challenges while handling projects is going to make team members more cohesive together.

You can feel the teamwork

Peer accountability is one of the most observable signs of a great team. You can feel it.

How many times have you been told that you botched a project? How did you react to it? Awkward? Guilty? Is it something you can improve? Consider these things objectively, and you’ll get a sense of what we’re about to discuss.

According to Patrick Lencioni, one of the five dysfunctions of a team is avoidance of accountability. People believe that holding them accountable makes them feel bad about themselves. This is especially true between peers, as opposed to between a boss and an employee. Why waste time attempting to help someone improve? It’s usually due to ignorance or a competitive spirit.

Making everyone accountable to the boss, in my opinion, is not that difficult. All that is required is structure and organization. Individual effort is also required for success. Teamwork, on the other hand, is about getting things done. Everyone on the team must hold one another accountable.

It’s difficult to see the big picture. Peer accountability benefits the entire team, not just our peers. A good team should look out for one another. Nobody is flawless. Everyone makes mistakes. We’ll continue to be ignorant as long as no one holds us accountable. That’s not good for the team.

Hold your peers accountable not only for their performance, but also for their behavior. Behavioral accountability, according to Lencioni, is what leads to better teamwork. When the entire team does it, no one is offended.

“I held him accountable,” the boss may say. As a result, he was fired. You do not have to fire people in order to hold them accountable. Holding people accountable allows them to grow. People being fired is equivalent to the death penalty, whereas holding them accountable is equivalent to giving them a second chance.

Build a strong team by challenging each other. Even when leaders and bosses are overworked, peers face the same challenges. If you want the best for your team, you’ll hold each other accountable and improve at every step of the way.


Vulnerability-based trust is a space in which leaders readily confess their mistakes, shortcomings, failures, and need for assistance. These leaders also recognize the strengths of others, even when those qualities exceed their own. They foster an environment in which the group they work with is open to making mistakes, accepting responsibility for any errors, and accepting coaching without mistaking it for criticism. As the person in charge sets a good example, they voluntarily comply.

The Secrets to High-Performing Teams

The ability to put aside individual egos, combine skills, and foster a culture of trust is the fundamental test of every successful team. Knowledge, experience, and the capacity to communicate are crucial building blocks for team members. Since you are trusted, you are aware that your team is depending on you to perform. The team’s common goal overrides each member’s unique need when team members are able to trust each other in their vulnerability. Building trust on a foundation of vulnerability is essential for creating high-performing teams. Some critical activities can be taken to overcome typical roadblocks on the way to effective teamwork:

  • Build Trust – In a professional setting, trust is frequently understood as having faith in someone to do a task. Due to their past performance, you have faith in their capacity to finish the assignment and are certain that the desired result will be obtained. Lencioni contends that vulnerability-based trust enables group members to openly share their talents and flaws without concern for rejection. Through shared experiences and time, these relationships of acceptance are created. Engaging team members in an off-site adventure is a powerful strategy for building trust. Your goal is to make the members’ interactions more human, which will increase mutual understanding and strengthen the tie of vulnerability and trust
  • Overcome Conflict – Majority disputes start when someone gets angry and a spirited discussion goes off-topic. You must first become aware of one another’s “hot buttons” if you want to avoid damaging disagreement. Once everyone is aware of their unique pattern, actions to change behavior can be taken. Another strategy for resolving disputes is to bring them to the surface right away so they may be discussed in a constructive way. Never should leadership try to settle the dispute. Individual decision-making by members is essential to the team-building process
  • Confidence in Decision-Making – Your members won’t feel comfortable sharing their opinions unless there is vulnerability-based trust. Making wise decisions is a defining characteristic of a high-functioning team. While the commitment should be somewhat flexible dependent on the group’s consensus, the intentions need to be made clear. It is much simpler for everyone to express their perspectives, share ideas, and come to a successful conclusion when the group is confident that the intentions of their fellow team members are good
  • Emphasize Accountability – A key indicator of a high-performance team is accountability. The team won’t develop the cohesive relationship required to be accountable without sound decision-making, effective dispute resolution, and a willingness to let down your guard. With vulnerability-based trust, group members look out for one another. Accountability comes naturally when group members genuinely don’t want to let one another down. Members are able to keep each other on track by publishing their goals for everyone to see. Regular progress evaluations also maintain peer accountability
  • Aim for Results – Without vulnerability-based trust, each member’s ego, need for status, and desire to advance their careers take center stage, pushing the group’s goal to the side. Team members will work together to accomplish success for the good of all if they are focused on clearly defined goals and deadlines

The group is held together by vulnerability-based trust, which puts them on the road to high-performance status. A competent leader is able to acknowledge the team as a whole, recognize good work, and diffuse any negative dispute. You’ll be setting the example and taking the first step toward creating a powerful and effective team when you allow yourself to be vulnerable in a team environment.


Sometimes we are reluctant to put up our hands and ask for assistance because we believe that people would assume that we already know the solution or because we believe that asking questions will put us at risk. But keep in mind that vulnerability-based trust is one of the cornerstones of team formation. The best approach to learn is to ask questions, which also foster invention and creativity. You can use questions as a useful tool to generate new ideas, find solutions to issues, and get new insights.

Every goal-oriented business should strive to develop the habits of coming up with new ideas, solving challenges, and learning from other viewpoints. Team members must be able to ask questions and be vulnerable in order to do this. They must have the openness to admit “I don’t know” or “I messed up.” Vulnerability-based trust develops when leaders readily and unapologetically admit their errors, flaws, shortcomings, and needs for assistance. They also acknowledge others’ strengths, even when those qualities are greater than their own. Since team members must learn to trust one another in order to function as a true team, this higher level of trust is essential for a team to fulfil its goals.

Building Vulnerability-Based Trust

Every organization with goals should work to cultivate the habits of coming up with new ideas, overcoming obstacles, and learning from other people’s perspectives. To accomplish this, the team needs individuals who can be vulnerable and raise questions. They must be willing to say, “I don’t know,” or “I made a mistake.” When leaders easily and honestly own their mistakes, weaknesses, shortcomings, and needs for support, vulnerability-based trust begins to grow. They also respect others’ virtues, even when they are superior to their own. This greater level of trust is necessary for a team to achieve its objectives since team members must learn to trust one another in order to work as a true team.

  • Take a Broad Perspective – In addition to the reality that no one like being micromanaged, prescribing minute details might hinder rather than promote results. In order to facilitate team members’ ability to perform their duties and to demonstrate their trust in them, leaders should control general direction and goals
  • Leave the desk now – Off-site training helps strengthen relationships amongst coworkers. When a team is removed from its usual environment, they have the chance to adopt new roles and dynamics, which opens up new channels for communication and strengthens their bond. Teams that are built on vulnerability-based trust have members who feel empowered to innovate, ask questions, and request assistance. A powerful team will work together to achieve its goals

Being entirely open and vulnerable with one another from the beginning is the foundation of vulnerability-based trust. The leader must take the initiative and take a risk if they want to build trust. Teams follow the leader’s lead at the conclusion of the day. A strong team is built on trust, and a leader must create that trust by being genuinely vulnerable with his or her team members, according to Patrick. Asking for assistance honestly is one simple method that leaders may create vulnerability-based trust. This calls for being honest and courageous in leading by being upfront, no matter how gross it seems. Decide when to be vulnerable. The more open and exposed the setting, whether it is a 1-on-1 meeting, Zoom, or your everyday stand-up, the better. This is to demonstrate to others that it is acceptable to let down your emotional barriers at work. This communicates to your staff that you can trust them with this more private information, and vice versa. As Patrick explains, the goal is to be open and vulnerable with everyone in the room, including your peers.


It takes a lot of effort on the part of managers and leaders to get teams to work together effectively. It’s a delicate balance, and best-selling author and authority Pat Lencioni claims that a team’s performance is frequently hampered by a number of dysfunctions. One of them is failing to pay attention to collective results.

For a team to function well, everyone must prioritize the team’s collective results. The issue is that, more often than not, individuals will place more emphasis on their own accomplishments than those of the team, taking the attitude that they are not failing. Coworkers often prioritize their department over the entire firm, despite their best efforts, because they feel more responsible and linked to that group.

It’s crucial to realize that team members are not expected to defend their functional specialization; rather, they are expected to constantly act in the company’s best interests. Colleagues on a productive team are willing to give up the outcomes or the wellbeing of their subgroup for the benefit of the team as a whole.

How can Teams Concentrate on Overall Results?

Following is a list of excellent practices that can assist in getting coworkers to concentrate on collective results:

  • Keeping the Group’s Attention on the Big Picture – Making a scoreboard that is readily visible may be helpful. It can show factual data about how well the team is performing. It is visible on this scoreboard how much time is remaining for them to accomplish their goals. Additionally, it enables the team to establish their own KPIs for success
  • Ensuring that the Findings are Feasible – It’s crucial to confirm that you persuaded the crew. If goals are too lofty, team members can give up. They will give up and concentrate all of their efforts on themselves, which is precisely what has to be avoided
  • Putting the Demands of the Team Before those of the Individual – This may necessitate a shift in perspective; it also means that team members are willing to make sacrifices when they are called upon to do so. They must be prepared to put aside personal initiatives to assist a teammate or change objectives to better fit the general plan of the company. It’s a mentality that calls for a lot of adaptability, flexibility, and quickness
  • Celebrating Achievements – Successes must be celebrated, just as errors should be admitted. Recognizing the unique contributions of coworkers is wonderful. It will serve as a fantastic reminder that the entire team is making progress toward accomplishing the collective results, it set out to accomplish

Why Collective Results Matter?

A group that has developed mutual trust and prioritizes the group’s goals:

  • keeps in high achievers
  • reduces individualized action
  • enjoys success and gains knowledge from setbacks
  • advantages from people who put the team’s needs ahead of their personal ambitions and interests
  • resists interruptions

Dealing with failure is one of the hardest problems a team faces, and when things go wrong, there is a natural tendency to blame other team members or external factors. Healthy teams seek to confront the mistake, take ownership of it, and start working together to achieve collective results and prevent it from happening again in the future.


Organizations that have a cohesive leadership team have long-term success. But, in order to achieve collective results, leadership teams must supportive one another. This calls for a commitment to the other person as well as a dedication to reaching the same objective.

When leadership teams have a shared commitment, they jointly create goals and assist everyone in understanding their responsibilities. Each executive is aware of how each of their areas may be highly involved, or in some situations, may have to scale back their operations, in order to reach those strategic goals. The chief executive-led leadership teams have a great understanding of the systems thinking required to get results.

Everybody Contributes, Either Directly or Indirectly

Everyone needs to understand their role in achieving a worthwhile result. Setting team goals enables us to understand the value of each member’s contributions. This necessitates including team members who make indirect contributions, possibly even more so for them as it may be unclear how such efforts relate to the mission’s ultimate impact.

Make a Commitment-friendly Environment

In addition to the roles that are established by titles or departments, each team member must choose to commit. They might accept the group’s aims and will even if they disagree with them. To develop critical thinking and foresee changing environments, you must push each other’s ideas and establish reliable connections. When this occurs, people are willing to work together to achieve collective results, even if it means sacrificing their own interests. Finally, you must hold one another responsible.

CEOs Establish the Standard for Team Commitment

Chief executives play a critical role in assisting team leaders in understanding the established group goals and the direct and indirect functions that each of them performs. The ability of chief executives to persuade leadership teams to recruit members is crucial. You need to create language around the goals so that everyone feels as though they matter or that they play a significant role, even if it’s only preventing the other teams from becoming distracted by fires so the core team overseeing the project can focus totally. They must also understand why one leader’s priorities or focus must be put on hold in order to allocate funding to the area where the team is most in need.

The fifth and final behavior in Patrick Lencioni’s model for creating and managing successful, productive teams is focusing on collective results. Great teams make sure that each member is contributing their fair share to the team’s success, regardless of their specific roles or areas of expertise, and the team itself must be confident that the outcomes are possible. Teams need to feel comfortable sharing their perspectives in order to develop a meaningful and unambiguous commitment to one another. Team members must be genuine and open-minded in order to ensure that their opinion is heard, taken into account, and accepted. Contributions from various viewpoints increase the group’s confidence that they made the best decision out of all the choices they had evaluated. Share your concept even if it isn’t chosen because it helps the team evaluate all possibilities.

Setting and achieving collective goals increases team and individual confidence in one another and results in the extremely satisfying attainment of collective goals. The group is able to take stock of where they came from and celebrate their achievements. Collective results lead to significant accomplishments. You can increase support for long-term group objectives. The team can be pushed and prompted to take on more. When a group’s collective goal is accomplished, momentum is created for subsequent goals that will lead to a new future rather than the status quo. When there is a shared commitment, everyone is aware that our ultimate goal as a team is to do something fantastic.

Team Coaching

Team coaching is becoming a fast-growing area of coaching since organizations and businesses have realized the significant increase in performance when the whole team is involved in an action-oriented coaching process rather than just the members of the leadership. Like other coaching processes, team coaching is an intensive and transformative process and coaches help the team generate deep levels of insight, awareness and understanding.

The Team coaching process can begin with benchmarking the measurement of the current team performance. The Five Behaviors of a Cohesive Team Model focus on trust, conflict, commitment, accountability and results, that guide team to become more cohesive and intact. The Team Dimensions Profile helps teams by enabling them to identify the most natural team role they fit into, work with their strengths and realize the importance of each role, the roles being Creator, Advancer, Refiner, Executor and Flexer. The Team Performance Profile can measure perceptions of team performance of all the members, the supervisors and the other stakeholders. This profile is based on the nine factors in the Types of Work Wheel whose factors are: organizing, producing, inspecting, maintaining, advising, innovating, promoting and developing. This 360degree process will reduce the chances of groupthink infiltrating the first step in the coaching process.

Using such profiles, the coach can develop a priority checklist that can act as a starting point of discussion. It includes items like what information does the team need that it is lacking, are they doing things in the best way known, who are the key stakeholders that they need to influence, are they developing products or services that the stakeholders want, are the products and services clearly defined in terms of outcome, are they maintaining the standards set, what are the details they need to look into more closely, are they well linked together and whether they need to form more external links. Then the coach can carry out a team mapping process that will show the degree of balance in the team in terms of work function performance and collective work preference. Most of the time it is found that there is an imbalance in the work, and this results in a lack of focus in some work functions in teams.

Even an organization whose leadership is well equipped with effective leadership methods will tend to have a few areas where the practices do not trickle down into the teams they manage. Sometimes leaders may be excellent in organizing and distribution of information but may lack in collecting information from their teams before making decisions. To address this issue team coaching can be applied where there are color coded meetings with the teams and the stakeholders. Green meetings are held to solely list down all the sources they need to gather information from, how they would do that and include the team members in finding out new methods of going about this process instead of following the old ways. Yellow meetings include the clients, senior management and other stakeholders to verify whether these changes are acceptable. Red meetings involve collaborating with the team members to put the plan into action and organize the processes and resources. Blue meetings involve the review process but include a reflection to see if everything went as planned and the standards were maintained. Learnings from misalignments are incorporated into the next iteration of the four meetings.

All these steps are followed with the guidance of a coach who offers an outside perspective and a source of objective views. Team coaching is the next step to leadership coaching if the aim is to build a high performing organization that works to its best potential at all levels of the hierarchy.