Is Your Team Failing to Perform to Their Potential?

written by Peter O. | People

Several years ago, I read that two horses can pull 3-4 times as much as a one horse can by itself. At first, this didn’t make much sense. Physically, two horses should be able to pull only two times the amount as one horse.

So what's happening here?   Is there some sort of physics trick that enables the animals to pull more than they normally could?  Like a lever or a pully?  

No way! Its simpler than that.  

A horse doesn't pull to its full potential until its joined by another. Something in them drives them to pull to their full potential when working together.   They love to be a TEAM.

Horse are simple animals.  Yet, they need a partner to align with them and help them toward their goal.

The same goes for people.

Does Adding People To Your Team Increase its Performance? Or decrease it?

A business is essentially a bunch of people on one big team.   They SHOULD be working together to get someplace.   They should be performing at a high level BECAUSE of one another not INSPITE of one another. 

Your teams should be performing better BECAUSE of each other not INSPITE of each other.

So why do so many businesses fail to feel like a team working together?  /alt/ most of the time, business are failing to multiply their talent and instead have a group of people performing worse than if they were alone....(bold statement).

Why do so many fail to perform better than the individuals alone?

People are far more complicated than horses.   We have more complicated emotions, thoughts, beliefs, goals, skills, and abilities.  (I'm not a horse so I guess I can't say what they really believe :P),

This can generate a lot of issues.  Things like politics, confusion, low morale, turnover, gossip, pride….

The Advantage by Patrick Lencioni talks specifically about this.   The cover states:

"Organizational health will one day surpass all other disciplines in business as the greatest opportunity for improvement and competitive advantage." -The Advantage by Patrick Lencioni

He's right!

Having a healthy organization is all about getting the junk out of the way (politics, confusion, turnover) and allowing people to live to their full potential.

For a group of people to perform much higher than the sum of their parts, more is needed that just a "horse buddy".  We need to minimize politics, minimize confusion, increase morale, decrease turnover. 

Its the job of the leader to create an environment where teams can perform to their potential.

Go find the potential

People have amazing potential. We can create new things, solve problems, create hope, build up people, create social changes.   A single individual can impact the world!

…and the potential of a group of people is even greater than a single person!

As leaders, we need to help release it.   If a pair of horses can work 4x better together.   What if the multiplier of a team of people?  10x, 20x, 100x better?

A teams potential is always far greater than the sum of the individuals in the team.

What are you going to do this week to help the teams you lead hit their potential?

(tip, start with the 6 Critical Questions from "The Advantage").

About the Author
Peter Olson writes about what he's learned growing a business to high seven figures. He's the CEO of an Inc 5000 company that works with entrepenours to help them growth their businesses.

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