If you read my previous blog post, you know that I was obsessed with my Grandmother Bessie’s shoe closet growing up. And the obsession with shoes has followed me through life. To this day I love shoe shopping, but it’s not about just ANY shoe – it’s about the RIGHT shoe.
I recently received a report from an EOS® company leader who said their team has been feeling a bit "bummed" lately. They felt this way after perfectly good Level 10 meetings™️, even when a lot got done!
Their concern was that the Level 10's seemed to focus on "negative things," like problems, barriers, obstacles, ISSUES, thus leading to a feeling of general negativity.
I did some correspondence on this with my "Honey Badger" tribe of fellow EOS Implementers, and they, too, noted that this is not uncommon. I've done a bit of online research, and it turns out that it is quite normal for high-performing teams to experience this occasionally.
In his book, What Got You Here Won’t Get You There, Marshall Goldsmith points out that the fundamental beliefs that drive our success can also make us resistant to change. We overestimate our contributions and sometimes take credit for things that others have accomplished while often ignoring our own shortcomings. These delusions are the result of success, not failure.
My client was mad. I could read the body language in the room, and it was not good. It was plain to see she’d been hurt deeply by some unspoken slight from one of her team members. The two of them were sitting there with their arms crossed, facing away from each other. The rest of the team was fidgeting or wriggling in their chairs and not looking at anyone.
It was obvious there was an elephant in the room that all seven of them knew about, but were refusing to acknowledge. Knowing that a healthy team is critical for our success, I called out the issue.
“But Jim, I completely disagree with the decision. How can you expect me to support John’s decision and commit to it when I think it’s wrong?”
“Tom”, I replied, “I’m not asking you to agree with John. I’m asking you to do the greater good – to be unified as a leadership team in all the decisions that are communicated to others. Especially the ones we don’t all agree on.”
I hadn’t quite won Tom over. Julia noticed, and jumped in.