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5 Dysfunctions of Unhealthy Teams

Workgroups become a cohesive team when they are trained to appreciate the differences between individuals within the team, live the values of the organisation and work towards the common objectives of the organisation, and in line with the strategy, culture and structure.

When a leader strives for a cohesive team, he/she has to decide who is in the team. Fundamentally, self development of the individual is key – it starts with understanding oneself, others and then the environment.

Teams are not born great. They navigate through a development journey to be high performing. Over time, they form a unique team style, a set of collective values, norms and beliefs that give them a team identity.

It is key that leaders are aware of what inhibits a team from being cohesive. The five (5) dysfunctions of unhealthy teams are:

Inattention to Results

Avoidance of Accountability

Lack of Commitment

Fear of Conflict

Absence of Trust

Individuals do not exist in vacuums within a team, and teams do not work in isolation within an organisation. As such individuals and teams achieve personal and business goals when they exhibit healthy levels of self awareness, social intelligence, collaboration and engagement.

While technical skills get employees through the door, it is the people skills that open most doors. Top Universities, Deloitte, McKinsey and the World Forum have highlighted in different platforms, the following top skills required for 2030 and beyond:

· Cognitive Flexibility

· Digitial Thinking and Computational Thinking

· Judgement and Decision Making

· Emotional and Social Intelligence

· Creative and Innovative Mindset

· Problem solving

· Lateral thinking skills

· Negotiation and Persuasive Skill

· Contextualised Intelligence

· Entrepreneurship Mindset

· Critical Thinking

According to HR Hub, team profiling looks at what qualities each member of a team brings to the table and considers how all these individual qualities work together cohesively. A good team profile will identify strengths, find out where the team is most effective, and identify key areas for development. It helps the team to understand and celebrate difference amongst its members and gives managers a real insight into what it is that makes their team tick.

Some statistics that are worthy to note in context of individual and team profiling:

· 75 percent of survey participants said that the most stressful aspect of their job was their immediate boss – McKinsey, 2020

· 15% of job seekers declined a job due to the company’s culture - Builtin, 2021

· Motivated workers outperform those with low engagement by 202% – Business2Community, 2021

· Managers are responsible for 70% of deviations in team engagement - Gallup, 2018

· Millennials prioritize ‘people and culture fit’ above everything else - HBR, 2021

· Companies that build a positive culture could see a 400% growth in revenue – CultureIQ

· Happiness raises business productivity by 31% – Bonusly, 2019

· 69% of Millennials are concerned their workplace does not develop leadership skills – Apollo, 2022


Highly engaged business units see a 41 percent reduction in absenteeism and achieve 59% less employee turnover – Gallup, 2018

Employee, team and leadership development using the Team Enneagram offers endless possibilities for self managed teams. Self managed teams contribute to the agile way of work where every employee accepts accountability, knows their role within the organisation, have trust in each other and are self driven.

Teams that have a high level of self awareness, social cognition and contextualised intelligence

are most likely to solve business and personal problems.

Email who is available to all leaders who choose to embrace the opportunity of Team Development through the Enneagram .


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