Team-workWhat is needed in building a Team-based relationship-centric work environment? You can achieve this with your team if you apply the following guidelines.

Create a Relationship Development Learning Environment

Make no mistake about it, performance trumps all. In the end, though, relationships give high performers the extra edge. As such, balance the expectations your bench has of a performing versus learning environment. How?

  • Empower a cascading culture of relationship development; say, ‘‘I know you get it; how about the rest of the team?’’
  • Remove the un-wows! Whatever is unimpressive about how your team identifies, builds, and nurtures relationships—find a way to remove it!
  • Recognize impactful relationships—relationships that are enabling; when they enable success, recognize them openly.
  • Make learning from relationships fun!

Give me an hour inside any company and I can tell you whether they ‘‘get,’’ value, and invest in relationships— and learn a great deal in the process. It’s in the air from the minute you walk in. If you can’t tell, invite trusted colleagues in who can, and then be open to their input.

Conduct Individual and Team-based Relationship-centric Assessments

Just as fingerprints are unique, we build and nurture relationships in very unique manners based on our past experiences, knowledge, talent, and perceived value for doing so. To understand the team you’ve assembled, assess them using criteria relating to personality, values, attitudes, interests, or lifestyles— similar to how the popular behavioral assessments such as Myers-Briggs, Hogan, Birkman, DiSC, HBDI, and psychographics have worked. We have developed two: Relationship Signature IndexTM, which evaluates individual attributes, and Relationship DNATM, which takes an empirical look at team attributes.

At the end of the day, a relationship-centric team that is unafraid of retribution and has the courage to fail—fast, forward, and cheap—will learn to perform together and deliver results!

To learn more, read the revised and updated Relationship Economics paperback edition with 40 percent new content, including an all-new chapter 10 on social media and business relationships (Wiley, Feb. 2011).

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