Susan & Renée
The 5 Keys to Successful Groups
"No one can whistle a symphony. It takes a whole orchestra to play it."
– H.E. Luccock
As a society, we tend to credit individuals with great accomplishments. It’s what history books are made of - who did what and when to achieve a certain outcome.
This is, however, only part of the truth. While individuals get most of the credit, the reality is that great things are achieved when groups of people work together. Be it a government, a school, a business, or a family, success is not achieved by working alone.
Even Martin Luther King, Jr., Steve Jobs, or Angela Merkel had a team of people who carried out their vision. Such pioneers are known to us precisely because they knew how to lead others.
Whatever your goal, your chance of succeeding grows exponentially when you can convince others to join you. So…
How do you get a group of individuals to work together effectively?
G2 Solutions’ formula for group success can be summarized with 5 Cs:
Clarity: A group’s ability to accomplish goals begins with being clear on what the goals are and why they are important. Leaders must be able to answer: Why are we here? Where are we going? and Why does it matter?
Communication: Leaders must be able to communicate the purpose and vision to other group members in a way that inspires them. This occurs when leaders can speak to the underlying motivations of the members and articulate how group members will benefit by participating in the group. Effectively articulating the vision allows members to see where the group is going and answer the question: Do I want to go along, too? Reasons to participate range from increased social status, higher profits, to leave a legacy, or live their values, such as serving others. In addition, clear communication is essential to helping members work together effectively.
Connection: Leaders must be able to connect with other group members and facilitate them in connecting with each other. This involves spending time together, listening and learning from each other, and establishing trust with each other. When members are connected they can affirmatively answer the questions Am I safe here? Am I valued? Do I belong? Will I be cared for?
Culture: Establishing a healthy group culture is essential to being productive, efficient and sustaining members’ dedication to the group. Ensuring a healthy group culture requires being intentional about all facets of the group including the specific routines, processes, and protocols that are adopted as well as the behaviors that will be promoted and discouraged. The process of developing culture helps the group move from an individual “me” mentality to a group “we” identity. Relevant questions related to culture include: Who are we? What do we stand for? and How do we behave?
Commitment: Of course, none of these elements matter without a commitment to executing the actions required to achieve the group’s goals. Commitment is cultivated by delineating the roles, responsibilities, and duties of group members and ensuring accountability among each other. A committed group can answer the questions, Who is doing what? How does it advance our goals?
The 5 Cs of group success do not operate as fixed or linear stages but occur in tandem and synergistically complement each other throughout the group’s evolution. For example, communication fosters connection and together they solidify the commitment members have to both the purpose of the group and to each other. Likewise, culture is continually being shaped by the practices devoted to clarity, communication, and connection. When members operate from a shared clarity of purpose, communicate effectively, feel connected with each other, and identify as a unified group, commitment is continually generated. This yields progress towards goals which in turn energizes members’ dedication to the group’s purpose.
Are you in the process of creating a new team? Or does your group need fine tuning? We’d love to help! Contact us for a free consultation.