Teamwork And Trust, With A Little Math

No matter what endeavor you are engaged in, you are likely to be part of a team. And if you truly want to make a difference, that team needs t0 act almost as a single entity. And the key for that is trust.

There are many different sources which talk about that trust relationships on teams. The Crucial Conversations series of books and lectures and trainings is one of them. Work Rules!, by Lazlo Bock, about People Operations at Google, also touches on this.  In both sources the authors speak to the fact that is not the individuals that are on the team, but how those individuals relate that makes the difference between a good team and a truly great team.

Trust in this context simply means being open to and listening to every member’s ideas. That includes dissenting opinions. In my experience, I have found that when everyone has been able to state their opinions and open and free discussion has occurred, the very best solutions are determined very quickly.

These authors have done a tremendous job in explaining how to make the team dynamics works and what to look for. And this can be backed up with math.  Intuitor.com, a site dedicated to succeed through creative learning , shows an easy steps why this works. Their article on how to form small decision-making groups, is a must read for anyone who is putting a team together or running a project.

It is fascinating what trust can do for a team because the compounding of the trust effect is exponential, not additive.

And that brings in the importance of that team work. If there is one member of the team that does not share this view and is not willing to cooperate, you lose most of the effectiveness of the team.  All of the nice exponential math goes out the window.  The number of possible solutions considered is severely curtailed.

So, when you are setting up a team, be very clear up front what your expectations are of the team members. Also keep in mind the size of the team and the possible number of interactions. As you work towards the mandate that the team has been charged with it is vitally important to make sure your team adheres to the expectations set up at the beginning. If you see a team member begin to deviate from those expectations, the very first thing to do is reestablish those expectations and that level of trust, otherwise it will become progressively more difficult to do so and your team will suffer as a result.

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