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Diagnosis and Assessment

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The Three Most Likely Issues Affecting Your Team

As complex as human behavior can be, the problems that get teams stuck are surprisingly simple. Because living things grow in cycles, any team is always at some stage of challenge. Peak performance is one of these stages, but it is usually not considered a problem. Often, performing well is the natural consequence of addressing issues in these other three areas.

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The Problem with the Mirror

It’s impossible to see yourself accurately in a mirror. Self-assessment comes with an inherent bias. While most strength and personality tools are self-sorts, the best information comes from outside validation. Those who know you best usually have an angle you haven’t considered.

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We’re Stuck. What Do We Do?

Ask three simple questions and then choose a course of action:

  1. Where is our team in its lifecycle?
  2. Why are we in this stage?
  3. What should we do to move our team forward?

All teams travel through predictable cycles of investment, trust, innovation, and change. Knowing where you are validates the emotional reaction to current challenges. Understanding why the team is experiencing any obstacle is the key to getting unstuck. A diagnosis ignites an action plan. Consider this simple model:

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The 10 Key Measurements of Effective Teams

Benchmarks provide a snapshot of momentary excellence. Eventually, the measurement will be surpassed as teams strive for continuous improvement. An assessment reveals the wellness of the current state and a diagnosis of where attention would be most fruitful. Choose whatever scale you wish – unhealthy to healthy, unproductive to productive, disengaged to engaged, stagnant to growing, resistant to adaptable – and measure your team. On a continuum from “1” to “5,” with five being desirable, how does your team rank in the following metrics?

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Assess Ten Strengths

Before inspiring your team with tomorrow’s vision, perform a quick assessment. After all, an expensive strategic planning exercise wastes time and talent when the health of the team can’t support the action plan. Before you look too far ahead, measure ten simple areas of team effectiveness.

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