“Building T*E*A*Ms”

On the TUNNEYSIDE of SPORTS February 1, 2016 #578 Up Next…” Building T*E*A*Ms”

After further review…It was a privilege to have the opportunity to speak to a group of managers from a nearby city government. The primary issue to be dealt with was that many of this city’s departments don’t often get a chance to meet and work together on problems that may be common to each, and so the best methods of solving them remain unexplored. We began by talking about leadership.

All too often people believe that leadership is someone else’s responsibility. Not so! Each of us will encounter situations when we have to “step-up” to take a leadership role. The theme presented in this meeting was “Leadership is not so much about ability, as it is about responsibility! Many often shy away from the “R” word for several reasons: Number one being the fear of failure. “If I fail in that area, I will embarrass myself,” they may say. I stressed that the best way to grow, i.e., to get better in what you do, is to risk failure, knowing that many before you have done that.

Another excuse for not stepping-up is the feeling of not being qualified to be a leader. The emphasis here was “leaders are not born, they are made.” They develop their leadership skills through trial and error. One doesn’t have to go back as far as Abraham Lincoln to find people who have failed over and over before they finally reached success. This management T*E*A*M was urged to adopt the mantra: If it’s to be, it’s up to me!”

We fully explored that theme with exercises designed to improve communication and change, and then progressed to examples of how to build a T*E*A*M. With Super Bowl 50 approaching, we talked about quarterbacks Cam Newton (Panthers) and Peyton Manning (Broncos), who will be first to admit they count on all their teammates to execute every play with their best effort. Should those players approach their task with nonchalance or lost focus, the quarterbacks step up to reinforce the importance to each individual’s contribution to the success of the play. Another mantra materialized: “Keep pounding away.”
As a former high school coach, I practiced the credo that “You build teams by building people.” I always believed that no one intends to make an error or to perform poorly. But when they do, it is the leader’s job to help each find a better way. It was my intention to “catch people doing something right,” a lesson I learned from my mentor Dr. Ken Blanchard.

Will you build your T*E*A*M by building each member?

To contact Jim go to www.jim@jimtunney.com or email him jim@jimtunney.com.

Jim’s new book “Another 101 Best of TunneySide of Sports” is now available for $20. This book takes examples from the world of sports and transforms them into positive messages for productive living. The $20. price includes tax, shipping and an autograph, if requested.

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