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Successful Teams – Part 2

Storming, Norming and Performing

For those of you who watched the Super Bowl on Sunday you saw the epitome of a high performance team. The Seahawks “Legions of Boom” dominated the Denver Broncos.
Storming, norming and performing follow the forming stage of team development. They are the stages a team moves through to reach high performance.

Storming = conflict often happens in this stage where the team is trying to figure out how to work together. Various ideas compete for attention and frustrations and disagreements often flare up as everyone gets settled in their roles and goals.

Norming = rules of engagement, team values, accepted behavior and a common understanding of the goals are established. At this stage, the group of people begin to work together as a team and feel like a cohesive unit.

Performing = the team has a relational bond that is built on trust and supports their work together.  Roles and responsibilities are clear, loyalty and morale are high, and everyone is equally task-orientated and people-orientated.  Group energy is focused on the task.

Whether you are leading a team or participating in a team, remember that there are developmental stages that every team goes through. It’s not unusual to experience some conflict or frustration on the road to high performance. Some tips to help you move to high performance:

  • Accelerate through storming by teaching team members about different work styles and strengths. Use a personality styles tool to facilitate the conversation.
  • Don’t leave high performance to chance, define what it means and make sure every team member understands the required behaviors and the ultimate goal of the team.
  • Coach team members in communication and conflict resolution. Make sure that everyone knows how to be successful.
  • Create a culture of safety. Make it safe to raise conflict and get it resolved to ensure that the team can focus on performance rather than allowing conflict to erupt and create disruption.

Check out our sample Team Charter.

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