This time of year, I have the honor of guiding people through deep team health work.
It’s often challenging for the teams as most of us aren’t fluent in offering feedback, discussing friction between us, or receiving appreciation well.
As one leader courageously offered in a recent session “I don’t feel heard…” the team missed the opening this vulnerable statement offered. I didn’t. I asked this leader a question and she revealed that if it continued, she’d leave.
The irony is this was the biggest fear of the rest of the leadership team… which is why they didn’t talk with her about it.
They were afraid of the answer.
Avoiding the conversation was causing the outcome they didn’t want. Said another way, if you actively avoid hard conversations, it’s likely you’ll get what you’re trying to avoid.
That team had a major breakthrough in trust by having the conversation they’d avoided. It was the doorway to becoming an unstoppable team. Though it wasn’t comfortable, they were better having had the conversation. It’s changed the game for them as a team and what’s possible in their company.
They had to trust each other and be vulnerable together.
With practice, you can gracefully work through the tough stuff.