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Many CEO’s hold the belief that putting a group of highly skilled executives around the same boardroom table makes them a team.  It does not. This is merely a talented group of people who excel in their independent areas of expertise who seldom operate from a place of organisational alignment.

High performing Executive Teams don’t materialise after talented executives are appointed.

High performing Executive Teams don’t materialise after talented executives are appointed.  While most CEO’s know this to be true, many still view the Executive functioning as one that will sort itself out independently and I’ve rarely seen this happen.

In my work with Executive Teams I’ve noticed a common pattern.  The teams that have clearly articulated their purpose as a team and have shared goals that can be measured, are the ones that have collective impact and in turn produce results.  This Executive Team purpose is generally different to the purpose of the organisation.

In a move towards developing a cohesive Executive Team, consider the following:

  • Executive Teams need to be intentionally designed and continuously fine-tuned as members grow and the organizational needs change.
  • Clarify the purpose and direction of the team by defining the future that they collectively wish to create.
  • Reconsider and potentially re-model your personal approach to building a high performing team.
  • Provide an opportunity for the team to co-create.  Potentially this could mean collective agreements around how they operate, make decisions, handle conflict and what the meeting cadence of the team will be.

Whilst this may sound overly engineered, a solid structural foundation helps Executive Teams hold a broader perspective of the organization that extends beyond their individual roles.  This enables better performance from your Executive Team resulting in a far reaching positive impact into your organisation.

Anne Hartslief

Anne Hartslief

Anne Hartslief is the Managing Director at Lockstep and leads the Gold Standard Executive Team programme.  Anne brings operational experience, business performance and an understanding of human behaviour to her role at Lockstep.  She believes that high-performing cohesive Executive leadership teams spread influence throughout the organisation, acting as a powerful point of leverage for success.

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