What great teams do … that make them great

The theme for our blog in September is Developing Winning Teams ….. So, what is it that individuals in a great team do that makes the difference? How do they out-perform other teams on a consistent basis and achieve spectacular results?

We know it’s a combination of many factors, including self-belief, discipline, motivation, determination, attitude and resilience, but one simple common behaviour can be distilled from all of these factors.

Individuals in a great team do extra.  They go the extra mile and, sometimes, they literally do put their ‘balls on the line’ to achieve their goals and those of their team.

This week, we have been enjoying re-reading the brilliant book, “Legacy”, by James Kerr, which explores the most successful sporting teams ever – the All Blacks rugby union team – and what they can teach all of us about life and business.

Kerr tells an excruciating tale of how, in 1986, Buck Shelford demonstrated extreme resilience in the face of adversity during his debut as the All Blacks’ captain. The game was subsequently dubbed: ‘The Battle of Nantes’ and is considered one of the most gripping and hard fought matches in the history of rugby. It is not an easy read, so be warned, but it is eye wateringly moving.

Just 20 minutes into the game, Buck was embroiled in an aggressive ruck in which he lost four teeth and suffered when a French boot collided with his groin, severing his scrotum and exposing at least one testicle. Limping to the side-line he instructed a medic to sew up the wound, without anaesthetic, returning to the game, where he continued playing, only to be substituted later on after a blow to the head left him badly concussed.

Although this example of an individual’s “champion” mentality is extreme to say the least, it represents a particularly profound form of courage and commitment to a cause… to never give up, to “spill blood” and to be prepared to make big sacrifices for your team. To put your “balls on the line” for what you believe in. Buck would be the first one to tell you, that this attitude had little to do with him – it’s simply the All Blacks’ ‘unstoppable’ team culture… their winning culture.

So, how far would everyone in your Senior Leadership Team go to secure victory? How strong is the ‘unstoppable’ team culture in your team? It’s critically important because it’s the foundation for outstanding, and sustainable, performance and results.

As Lou Gerstner, who turned around IBM, once said, “(Team) culture isn’t just one aspect of the game; it’s THE game.”

If you want to create an ‘unstoppable’ team culture that will drive performance results to levels you never thought possible, you need to understand how to do this. So, why not  click here and be in with a chance to win TWO FREE PLACES on our next “Working Miracles … with Performance™” workshop on 15th & 16th September 2021 and discover what you would do through thick and thin, to keep going in your very own “playing field”!

“I was expecting a ‘normal’ training course and thought it would be the same as ones I’d been on before. After the first hour I realised that I couldn’t have been more wrong!  I found it enlightening!”  Director

And, for another example of how champions go the extra mile and show unfaltering determination to reach their goals, click here.


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