True North Alliance - Team Development Training






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Shifting Landscpes = New Opportunities

Chess Edwards


New Teams = New Opportunities for a Fresh Start


Remember that feeling you had as a kid when you moved to a new neighborhood, or started at a new school, or joined a new sports team, or went off to college and you saw an opportunity to start over; to get a fresh start?

Nobody knew your history; your past embarrassments, foibles, fumbles, and goofs. You could escape old labels and expectations. You could start over. You could reinvent yourself. Wasn't that a liberating feeling?

The new global economic landscape has had a tremendous effect on the makeup of business teams. New business strategies and priorities, pernicious layoffs, departmental eliminations and reorganizations and a host of other factors have necessitated a complete redesign of many teams and their functions.

The good news is that you might now find yourself in a new position or working with new people or collaborating with different teams or exploring new cross-functional relationships. This can provide you with the perfect opportunity - to in some small or major way - to reinvent yourself.


The Big Idea here is to choose one or two primary strengths that you wish to bring more prominently to the foreground and focus on them until they are a natural aspect of your being.


Mountain TeamBasically you get to choose quite consciously how you wish to show up, how you wish to be seen, how you want others to experience you.

Choose the strength that, if focused on, would have the greatest impact on the majority of your relationships and your effectiveness as a leader.

Here are some examples:

  • Your ability to listen.
  • Your willingness to step into a leadership role.
  • Your willingness and ability to make commitments and follow through on them.
  • Your level of empathy and understanding.
  • Your ability to remain calm under pressure.
  • Your willingness to let others help you.
  • Your willingness to chill out and let others take on more responsibly.

I recommend focusing on something that you wish to do more of or something that you wish to do better, rather than focusing on what you want to do less of.

Its always better to focus on increasing your healthy behaviors and let those nudge the non-supportive behaviors out of the way. So, instead of focusing on “not showing up late for meetings” you would instead focus on “being on time for meetings.” Simple as that.

Another way to look at this is to ask yourself “What core strength or behavior do I want to turn up the volume on?” If you’re playing at a 7, what would happen if you turned it up to 8 or 9?

Of course if you’re a fan of the cult film ‘Spinal Tap’, then you realize that your amp most likely will go all the way up to 11. But I caution you about blowing out your audience.

Remember this important lesson:


A “personal weakness” is typically no more or no less
than the overdoing or misapplying of a personal strength.


So turning up the volume all the way could have the opposite effect of what you’re trying to achieve.


Jungle YogaOh, and by the way… You don’t have to wait until you’ve switched teams or roles or companies to apply this Big Idea.


As the famous poet and playwright, Bertolt Brecht, says

“You can make a fresh start even with your final breath.”





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