April 2018 - In This Issue:

Diane Kindermann, managing partner at Abbott & Kindermann, Inc., a law firm that specializes in land use, environmental, real estate, and municipal law, knows firsthand how important it is to build an effective team. Diane and her firm represent clients throughout California obtaining approvals on projects such as a master planned community in Placer County, a luxury resort in Calistoga, and a mining project in Madera County. They also represent clients before administrative agencies and litigation in State and Federal courts. Their work demands a special skill set and expertise in order to provide on-point, cost effective legal services for their clients. No matter the litigation or client representation need, Abbott & Kindermann's experienced team is there to assist.  

Favorite Links From Around The Web 
How you communicate says a lot about how effective you are as a team player. This column offers five practical tips to help you better collaborate with your teammates. 

A quick read from Forbes Magazine about how success cannot be achieved alone.

Want to know what eight questions the best mentors ask? This article can help. 

How To Build A High-Performing Team

As a CEO or partner, it is not easy to build a great team. It takes a strong leader to establish standards of performance, and know that your team will perform at or above those standards.
While your team can possess all the skills needed to perform their job, there are two critical components required to lay the foundation for success: communication and team profiles.
For starters, research tells us that 75% to 80% of an individual's contribution to their work is communication. Communication serves two critical functions for every organization. First, it's how information is disseminated so tasks can be completed, and second it builds relationships and trust. Think about it like this: if someone cannot get along with the rest of the team, then things become tense, productivity suffers, and trust is lost.
Next to strong communication skills, are team personality profiles. Before hiring a prospective team member, we recommend having them profiled. A profile will help you learn how they may fit into your culture should you hire them, and help understand how their presence may enrich your team. We know that hiring the right people, or having the right people on the bus, is the key to being successful. We agree, which is why a profile is such a valuable resource. It will help you understand  who your team members are, and  who a prospect is as well.
Now that we have identified the foundation for success, how can we ensure our team is effective? Here's the short answer: a high-performing team consists of people with different, but complementary knowledge skill sets. This means that every person brings a specialty or certain expertise that contributes to the overall success of the company. Additionally, trust is key. One of our favorite books about building effective teams is  The Five Dysfunctions Of A Team by Patrick Lencioni. The book describes the pitfalls that a team faces as they learn to work together.
The  foundation of effective teams referenced in the book's title is an absence of trust. If two team members can't trust each other, communication between them often shuts down, which severely impacts the necessary interactions between them.
This is not to say that all workplace conflict is bad. In fact, a healthy disagreement can spark new and innovative ideas, as well as growth. Healthy conflict demonstrates that the team can come together, discuss different ideas and challenge one another. Keep in mind that everyone is entitled to an opinion. It's only if there is no resolution or compromise reached when production slows, communication breaks down and the bottom line suffers.
There are a multitude of  complex, sensitive, and stressful issues that confront CEOs, but none consumes as much time, or generates as much anxiety, as dealing with an executive team member that's not working out.  Early warning signs can often be dismissed or overlooked, and by the time the problem starts reaching crisis proportions, the CEO has become deeply invested in trying to make things work. He or she procrastinates, grasping at one flawed excuse after another. Meanwhile, the cost of inaction mounts daily, resulting in poor leadership, loss of team trust and opportunities. Don't let this be you. Know when to take action, and adhere to your performance standards. This sets the bar for strong leadership.
At  Jeanne Reaves Consulting, we offer a plethora of services that can help you build an effective team. We can assist you in executive communication training, profile your team, or profile prospect employees. Additionally, we offer coaching services for executive leaders utilizing  The Five Dysfunctions Of A Team as a resource. Sound like we can help?  Contact us, today!

In Closing 

While scrolling through this quarter's newsletter, you may have noticed the format has changed. We have in fact given our newsletter a tiny makeover. While we've made some changes, we can assure you that the content and organizations we typically feature will still be included. We're also thrilled to share that we've added some of our favorite links and reads from around the web, which  you won't want to miss! 

As a reminder, don't forget to look for Part II of our newsletter (also a new feature), which you will receive in your inbox on Friday, April 20.  

On behalf of all of us at Jeanne Reaves Consulting, thank you for reading and for connecting with us. We hope you enjoy this quarter's newsletter. 


Jeanne Reaves 

Jeanne Reaves

We can help you reach your highest potential.
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