Book Report on John C. Maxwell’s DEVELOPING THE LEADERS AROUND YOU
Chapter 7: Forming A Dream Team of Leaders
Going solo may not always be the best things to do in life, in general, as well as in business. One may find it too troublesome to be part of a team but that’s why forming that “dream team” should be one of our goals in life. Training and developing a person to become a leader is admirable. Training and developing many people to become leaders and forming a team out of them would be incredible.
So what should a dream team have you may ask? On top of my head, I would say trust and care. A team should move as a unit. There’s no room for individual standouts here. Even if they’re individually great, if they can’t bring out their skills as a team and bond with one another, there’s nothing to build on. This can be developed through out-of-work experiences such as retreats and team buildings. Initially, this will be difficult to have but as long as the team members are open-minded, this will eventually come.
Next, that team should know what the true goals are. Learn the important goals, check the skill sets of each individual, and find out how to use all those skills to achieve the team’s goals. The first step towards achieving this is by communicating. A lot of people would say that this is the most important foundation for any team to succeed. I say, it’s just one of the most important but definitely not the most important. For me, it’s trust and care because that means that the team is united through thick and thin. Anything is possible…yes even failing. However, they can still pick themselves up and eventually succeed so long as they remain united. Team goals are not likely going to be fulfilled through solo means (unless you’re Superman but that’s another story). So going back, positive communication is the key to increased productivity and efficiency.
After all this, the hopeful effect is that the team members begin to exhibit growth. Only when the team members are continuously interactive will they exhibit growth. All their experiences as one unit as well as in several divided units and even on an individual basis can contribute to the team’s growth so long as these are communicated well with the whole team and with others outside of the team.
At this point, having been exposed to one another for some time, the team’s chemistry will be tested. It is important to assess whether the team has a good fit and that their working together as a single unit. At times, it will be required of the team members to set aside their personal interests and put the team’s interests first. If there are only limited roles in a team and so many are qualified (not to mention a lot of people in the team want to have it), definitely some have to take the hit and allow the best possible person to take on that role then cover other roles.
A good team also needs to have good substitutes. The stars will most probably be your “first team” but even they will get tired at some point and will need to be relieved every once in a while. The starters will need to rely on bench players to continue their roles until they are able to resume it. This doesn’t mean that the bench players are necessarily of a lower caliber than the starting players. In fact, it’s possible that these bench players are the “closers” of the team and are actually the “clutch” players who are able to put their game face on when the time calls for it.
The team must also know where exactly the team stands. Call it intuition, call it court sense, or whatever…it’s the ability to know what’s happening around you and the team. Play makers, in particular, need to be fully aware of the surroundings in order to call out the best plays for every situation. At the end of the day, achieving all of this won’t be possible without sacrifices as earlier mentioned. Working in a team means that it isn’t all about you. Your hard work will uplift the team and lack of it will certainly bring it down. Each one carries the team on his/her shoulders. That is the burden of working in a team and as the leader of that team, the burden is much, much heavier. This is what’s going to be discussed in the next chapter.