Clarity is possibly the most important element that a leadership team brings to an organization. Why do we exist? How do we behave? How will we be successful? etc. (in the Patrick Lencioni model I leverage with leadership teams, there are six key questions). In our current environment, it has been clear that organizations with crystal clear clarity are moving faster, moving more effectively, experiencing greater peace, and will recover more quickly.
While the “how” behind creating clarity may be the subject of a future post, here is one tip that can help: Limit the size of the team that is making decisions. The leadership team is tasked with making the tough decisions and communicating them to the rest of the organization. Once you start to get more than 9, 10, 11, 12 people, it becomes difficult to build trust and have substantive debate in order to get to the best decisions. Instead of embodying inquiry – seeking to understand each other’s opinions – team members turn to advocacy – advocating for their own opinion – because they don’t know if they will get the floor again. I have personally seen this in a number of organizations and was reminded of it again just last week.
If you find yourself in the position of having too many voices and not substantive, constructive debate, consider limiting the size of the team making the decisions. People may gripe at first but after a couple of weeks they will recognize that it works better.
Now go build a team that is #hippostrong!