7 Steps to Help Teams Achieve Big Things


By Craig W. Ross November 15, 2017

Even when teams have the ingredients they need to succeed, such as talent and a great plan, they're often missing a method for creating the thoughts and actions required to execute the plan.

In Do Big Things: The Simple Steps Teams Can Take to Mobilize Hearts and Minds and Make an Epic Impact (Wiley, 2017), my co-authors, Angela V. Paccione and Victoria L. Roberts, and I present a seven-step process to help your teams meet their objectives without negatively affecting employees' quality of life.

Step 1: Commit to the human imperative. Teams that do big things identify upfront what their members need to be thinking, feeling and doing to deliver on their business goals. Most important, they understand that they must care as much about each other as teammates as they care about achieving their targets.

Step 2: Embody success and leverage failure. Many teams hope they will succeed, but deep down they have doubts. Teams that have a reliable process for thinking and acting, no matter what occurs around them, achieve success from the start. When excellence is who we are (rather than what we will be someday), even the hardships we encounter make us better as a team.

Step 3: Choose to contribute, activate and connect across the business. Every teammate makes 35,000 decisions a day. However, only three will determine whether the team succeeds. They are:

  • Choosing to bring my best to this situation.
  • Choosing to bring out the best in others in this situation.
  • Choosing to partner across the business to deliver on the shared objective.

Step 4: Exercise your barrier-breaking authority. Successful teams effectively identify the obstacles—both real and perceived—that stand between them and their goals. Then, team members choose the thinking and actions necessary to break through those barriers.

Step 5: Focus on what matters. When team members become distracted, stressed and disconnected, the team will stumble before the finish line. But they can complete the race if they stay focused, particularly on the intentional interactions that develop lasting partnerships among team members.

Step 6: Energize around a shared reality. Teams don't fail because they don't have enough time. They fail because of how they use the time they have. When there's a unified understanding of the environment the team operates in, the challenges it faces and what's necessary to succeed, team members are free to accelerate forward.

Step 7: Mobilize hearts and minds. Successful teams are those whose members find meaning in their work. Big things are only achieved when team members are empowered to own their roles in delivering a stronger future.

This book is written for people who are bleeding for their organizations because they believe what they're doing is important and that the people they're working with are important. And because they want to be true to their values, they're seeking a practical, proven way to mobilize hearts and minds within the team so they can do big things.

Craig W. Ross is CEO of Verus Global, a people and team development company in Littleton, Colo.



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