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How well does your organization function as an integrated, cohesive team?

SmartPulse — our weekly nonscientific reader poll in SmartBrief on Leadership — tracks feedback from more than 190,000 business leaders. We run the poll question each week in our e-newsletter.

Last week, we asked: How well does your organization function as an integrated, cohesive team?

  • We’re a great team — everyone moves in sync: 7.62%
  • We’re reasonably tight, but occasionally teamwork breaks down: 40.79%
  • We have challenges working as a team: 35.71%
  • We’re a horrible team — it’s a group of individuals: 15.87%

Apparently there’s no WE in TEAM either. These results are surprising and alarming. More of you see trouble with teamwork than see it working. That means you as a leader are likely spending more time and effort solving dysfunctional team behavior and mediating conflicts than you are on achieving a goal. I don’t need to go into the problems with that allocation of time and energy. If your team is in this bottom 50%, hit pause, get everyone together, define a shared set of goals and operating principles for how you’ll interact with each other and start holding people accountable for better behavior. Once you’ve made the team more cohesive, then you can start setting and achieving those bigger goals that improve your business.

Mike Figliuolo is managing director of thoughtLEADERS and author of “One Piece of Paper: The Simple Approach to Powerful, Personal Leadership.”