All thriving teams have a few things in common – they share the same purpose and goals; individuals on the team understand their roles and are capable of performing their responsibilities; and they all commit to values and ground rules that keep them working in sync. Most importantly, they care about one another and will support each other through failures and successes. One clear way that they demonstrate their care and support is by saying the thing that needs to be said. They’ve found a way to share meaningful observations, feelings, and ideas with one another that have a positive impact, even when the content may be hard for someone to hear. They understand that:
Everyone Needs Feedback – People benefit from knowing if their performance and the results of their work are aligned with what is expected of them.
Everyone Needs Accountability – It’s necessary for individuals to first hold themselves accountable for their behaviors and actions. When they aren’t able to do that, they need caring people around them who will help them see how they’re showing up in ways that could prove harmful to themselves or their teams. From that awareness they have the power to make different choices.
Everyone Needs Their Idea Heard – Whether the idea is big, small, out-of-the box, or intended to keep things on track, teams will go farther, faster, and with optimal commitment if those possibilities get on the table for discussion.
Everyone Needs to Feel Appreciated – When individuals or teams are recognized for who they are, and their specific contributions are genuinely celebrated by those around them, their energy, joy, and engagement soars.
Have you ever been part of a team where feedback and accountability were given in a destructive way, where recognition seemed hollow and people stayed silent out of fear? That’s not what saying the thing that needs to be said is about. It is not about taking pot shots at people, telling them what they should do, venting at them about their shortcomings, or ghosting them after pointing out a flaw. It does not give anyone license to share every unfiltered idea or thought that comes into their head. Saying the Thing That Needs to Be Said is about speaking your truth without blame or judgement, gaining mutual understanding, and creating the conditions for people and projects to grow.
Do you have “a thing,” and want to make sure you say it in the care and support way, like the thriving teams do? There is a lot of great literature out there that can help you learn how to do that. If you need a checklist that is quick and easy to remember, try running your observation or idea that needs to be said through Vestalia Hospitality’s shared values:
Curiosity: Will saying this increase understanding?
Creativity: Will saying this generate possibilities, opportunities, or innovations?
Heart: Will sharing this contribute to growth and well-being?
Presence: Will I be able to be focused and grounded in this moment?
If you’ve answered yes to those four questions, you’ve got a powerful perspective that could propel people and projects into meaningful change. Gather your courage and say it, your thriving team needs you!
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The Next Big Idea Club is a subscription-based book club curated by authors Adam Grant, Daniel Pink, Susan Cain, and Malcolm Gladwell.
“The club is about giving these lesser-known thinkers a chance to captivate and inspire you to open your eyes to the best ground-breaking new insights in psychology, business, and the science of living a fulfilling life.” – Malcolm Gladwell
Their website is full of free articles and recorded conversations that explore topics including Habits & Productivity, Creativity, Arts & Culture, Entrepreneurship, Happiness, Health, Science, and Technology. Want to get a taste of what their website has to offer? Here are two links to content that caught my attention. See if anything in there will grab yours!
Book Excerpt, 14 minute read
Full disclosure – I have not read James Clear’s book Atomic Habits: An Easy & Proven Way to Build Good Habits & Break Bad Ones, from which this excerpt came. As a stand-alone article, it’s got entertaining stories and academic research that illustrates how small changes in your behavior, repeated frequently and compounded over time, can make a big difference. You’ll also come away with a basic understanding of why it’s better to stop focusing on a specific goal and start focusing on doing what takes to achieve it. Clear’s ideas, if you connect with them, could make an impact in your life. Click here to read the excerpt.
Recorded Conversation, 20 minute duration, with accompanying transcript, 5 min read
How to Calm Your Fearful ‘Lizard Brain” and Live Life to the Fullest
How well do you know your lizard brain? That’s the part of us that wants to fight, freeze, or flee when we’re triggered into intense, fear-based emotions. How do we grapple with such a powerful force in our own lives? Spend a moment with Heather Hansen, trial lawyer and author of the book The Elegant Warrior: How to Win Life’s Trials Without Losing Yourself, to get a peek at some core life lessons she has learned in the courtroom regarding managing our lizard brain, living authentically, and communicating with compassion. This link includes a conversation with her that covers some key points of her book, as well as a transcript of that conversation. Read or listen, it’s your choice!
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