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Objective: Synergy Under Stress

Updated: Feb 29

By, Erin R. Price, MBA & Actualized Team Profile Certified Professional

A project team (or any team who works closely together everyday) has the potential to flow well together, or hit resistance. There are many factors that come into play with team synergy and stress. At times we may encounter things out of our control like supply chain demands, time management, budgeting, technical issues, etc. A more controllable component is team behavior and reactions amongst each other.

Stressful situations can bring out the worst in people. There's no doubt, some days are better than others, and some days you just wish you could go back to bed. Issues arise even in the best teams, but as long as we get back to the flow, the candor, the respect, then the team gains resilience as they work through issues. We need to be able to share ideas openly without fear of retaliation; We need to trust one another to do their part; And we absolutely need to sustain this level of commitment and teamwork to not only deliver a complete and noteworthy project, but so we want to work together in the future.

Wanting to work together is so much stronger than having to work together. When we think about teamwork, we have to consider the role each person plays; What type of energy do they contribute? How does each person react under stress? Let's take a look at some red flags that let us know stress is diminishing the team synergy!

Over-dominating. There is a difference between being a motivated "go-getter" and an overly aggressive bulldozer. This red flag can be verbal or non-verbal over-dominance and/or intimidation. It can also show up as one or two individuals steering away from the teams agenda and doing work on their own, not listening to others, and/or not being supportive. Multiple assertive personalities may compete for control or even manipulate others.

Micro-management. I feel as though this is the go-to complaint for so many teams, but there is a reason why this behavior gains so much attention. It is the result of one person not trusting others for accurate quality work. As a result, they feel they must be overly-involved. This behavior is demeaning to the team but the person doing it feels they have no choice. No one is winning here.

Silence. At one time, maybe you had a very creative and friendly team member, but now they have gone silent, or turned into the "yes man" going along with everyone else's ideas so as not to create conflict. This is detrimental in many ways, and will result in lost profits if not addressed. Creative minds hold the key to new project ideas and innovations.

These are just a few of many red flags. The good news is that there are resolutions well within our control for those willing to turn things around. No one is perfect; but the above red flag behaviors are unacceptable and should not be normalized. The longer these red flags are ignored, the higher the turnover will be. Let me help you and your team get back to being creative, highly productive, and motivated to face the next challenge!

We can all be our true self, work on high performing teams, and still be professional. That's called composure!

As a leader who has been in many different work environments, filled with people from all kinds of different backgrounds, I have experienced and worked through some of these red flags myself. A team with mutual respect and synergy will become more resilient to stress and embrace each others different leadership traits instead of fearing them. There are many ways to work through and around issues and improve the productivity of your team!

If you want professional, experienced, team development resources, I can provide them! Let's connect and get started!l

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