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A Few Notes From Cheryl

July teleclass:   Please join us for this month’s teleclass on July 22 at 12:00 Pacific / 3:00 Eastern time for “From Me to We: How to break down the silos within cross-functional teams for greater success!”  See full details and registration below or on our  Speaking page.  Be sure to mark your calendars for the 4th Wednesday of every month (through October) at 12:00 Pacific / 3:00 Eastern time for the rest of the teleclass series.

Feature Article:   In recognition of summer’s arrival, this month’s feature article is designed to give you an opportunity to reflect on the present moment with your team, as well as consider what they need to be successful for the remainder of this year.   Enjoy!

Warmest regards,


Cheryl

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Feature Article:  Summer Check In: Where is your team?

Summer is here, my favorite time of year!  I feel inspired by all of the possibilities for lots of outdoor activities, bbqs, spending time in nature, going to favorite places like the beach, local street festivals as well as upcoming vacation plans. Fresh summer fruits are in season and backyard gardens are growing and bountiful (I’m excited that the first strawberries I’ve ever grown in my backyard are now ready to eat)! Some of you have shared this same excitement with me recently in Seattle and San Diego at conferences where I led sessions on work-life balance and leadership…you confirmed that this is a very exciting time, indeed!

Summer can also be an exciting time for teams, as team members relax into the summer months, enjoy vacation time, spend time with friends and family, and then come back to work re-energized from their rest and relaxation. It’s an opportune time to help your team enjoy this renewed energy and build even greater momentum for the second half of the year!

Where is your team?


Now that we’re halfway through 2009 and into this exciting time of renewed energy, it’s a wonderful time to check in with your team by starting a dialogue around these types of questions:

  1. Where is your team, right now?


In other words: how present are your team members with each other right now, in this moment? Are they really listening to each other? Are they slowing down long enough to check in with each other and learn more about each other?

Many of the teams we’ve been working with have been moving at very rapid paces, from one project to the next, and often forget to take the time to slow down and check in with each other. Since summer is a great time to slow things down a bit, I would encourage you to help your team take the time to be more present with each other – ask more questions instead of rushing off to the next project, getting to know each other more personally, etc.

Typically, once teams do this, they are amazed at what they find…many opportunities to deepen their relationships with each other, and ultimately become more productive by taking that time to slow down, really listen and get to know each other!

  1. What fun activities does your team have planned for this summer?


What types of team building activities are on the calendar for your team this summer? In our June teleclass “How to Re-Energize Your Team to New Heights” we talked about many things you can do with your team to help them build more camaraderie, stay motivated (even during challenging times) and build morale.

If you haven’t already, I would encourage you to talk with your team about the types of activities they would find fun and energizing this summer, and then schedule several of those events on your team’s calendar TODAY! Be sure to rotate responsibility for each event, so that everyone on the team will have greater ownership and involvement in the process (plus, that way, the organizing responsibility won’t fall on one person’s shoulders).

Here are some examples of potential activities: multi-cultural potluck lunch, going out to lunch or dinner, going on a team picnic, going to a baseball game, etc. Team building retreats are also a re-energizing way to support your team in building greater camaraderie and deepening relationships, as well as kicking off team development programs to sustain your team through the rest of the year so they can achieve all that your organization is counting on them for.

Here are a few more creative team building examples from client teams that we’ve worked with recently:


  • Volunteer together as a team for a local organization to help the elderly, homeless, etc.
  • Turn a previously-mundane office task into a fun team building task (e.g. one of our client teams decided to make cleaning out the overhead light fixtures a fun team task – they report that they got the lights cleaned out in record time, and actually had a blast doing it together!)
  • Ice cream social (this can even be done by virtual / remote teams – one of our client teams created this idea for their virtual team and it works great – everyone goes to their freezer at a designated time, puts their ice cream and toppings together and comes back on the phone at a designated time for social hour, where they talk about everything EXCEPT work!)
  1. What’s possible for your team for the second half of this year, particularly if they have an enjoyable and developmental summer?


I invite you to talk with your team about what’s possible for them to achieve during the second half of this year, particularly if they are supported in the activities and development they may need this summer. Perhaps they’ve been working so hard that they just want to have some fun, “down time” together. Maybe they’re feeling the need for some specific tools / training in order for them to be successful during the upcoming months.

It’s hard to know exactly what your team might need, because each team is very unique and has specific needs. The only way to find out is to ASK…and be very present by fully LISTENING to hear what they say. If you try it, the results just may amaze you!

Accountability and Possibilities:


As we discussed here last month, there is always something that we as individuals can do to shift our team’s communication and/or dynamics, and that includes when we support them in the types of ideas mentioned above. It begins with personal accountability – knowing that in every moment, we have the power to impact team dynamics in a positive or negative way. The choice is yours (and your team’s) – so help remind your team of the impact of their contributions, and help your team have a wonderful, fun and present summer!

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Upcoming Workshops

“From Me to We: How to break down the silos within cross functional teams for greater success" - 2009 Teleclass Series

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

12:00 noon - 1:00 pm Pacific / 3:00 pm - 4:00 pm Eastern

During this teleclass, you will learn how to:

  1. Help stop silo thinking before it starts by creating awareness of the telltale signs
  2. Tips to get the team unstuck from silo thoughts and individual entrenched positions
  3. “Bust” silo-thinking/habits by having teams create a collective vision and plan for success

For complete details with all dates in this series and to register click HERE

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Team Building Events and Off-Site Meetings:

Could your team use some help to be more cohesive?
Is it time to enhance your team's relationships and productivity?

Some teams know that something isn't working, but they don't know exactly what that is or how to improve it. Some organizations hold team building seminars and employee retreats because they know it's time to enhance their teams' productivity and relationships. Do either of those statements describe you/your team? If so, and if you haven't already contacted us to discuss your needs, feel free to give us a call to see if we can help you.

We offer a variety of programs to enhance the performance of your teams as well as improve the ways in which your teams interact, so we invite you to visit our Training and Seminar page.   This is a great way to show appreciation for your team and enhance their productivity, thereby improving the bottom line for your organization!

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About Goals InSight, Inc.

Goals InSight helps organizations achieve their desired results in the following ways - click on any of the links for details:

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