Creating an Unequalled Team
by Lisa Holland

We all know the exponential value a team offers over an individual. Certainly a team is equal to more than the sum of its parts, but recognizing the unique value of the individuals within a team is the way to create a truly great and Unequalled Team.

When our company was quite young, we prided ourselves on being an egalitarian bunch with no hierarchy and no titles. Everyone took turns doing just about everything, from answering the phones, to budgeting proposals, to driving event delivery trucks, to cooking communal lunches. We were a close-knit team that enjoyed being together, but more and more frequently the equality structure was working against us.

The brilliant and creative chef wasn’t really a great proposal writer. The take-charge event logistics manager was a bit dyslexic and could never reconcile a budget properly. Most tellingly, no one was entirely happy. The occasional discord we experienced became a daily problem as the company grew. We dedicated significant time and money to participating in multi-day retreats with highly paid coaches to help us figure out a way to be a better and more productive team.

Ultimately, we simply came to the realization that the way to get the most from the team and create harmony was not to assume we were all equal.

We aren’t all equal. Think about that – it sounds almost subversive. The way to create a great, Unequalled Team is to recognize an individual’s unique talents, and then get out of their way and let them do what they do best. To create an Unequalled Team, we must recognize we each have a role that can’t be fulfilled as well by any other member.

The most effective team leaders understand that selecting the individual with the right skills and then getting out of his or her way to let them do their job is the best way to create a great and Unequalled Team.