Feb 22 2019| Leadership

Team Formation and Dynamics

Building a culture of respect, trust and performance

by Phil Eyre Founder

Leaders is frequently invited by our clients to work with their teams to quickly build mutual understanding.


What Do We Mean by Mutual Understanding?

Mutual understanding is about how the team communicates amongst themselves and with others in the business. It explores what values and approaches that each individual brings to the team and how these values connect with the aspirations of the business.

Important questions to ask include: what skill sets do we possess together and are there any significant gaps?  


Why is it Important?

An emotionally intelligent team, high in self-awareness and team-awareness, that regulates their responses and interactions, will outperform teams that are low in these essential ’soft’ skills.


Who Will Benefit From This Work?

All teams benefit will benefit from this work,but Leaders’ approach has particular benefits in the early stages of team formation, whether due to one or two new members joining, businesses merging together or a wholesale change in the leadership team.

Establishing the basis for effective teamwork at the outset of these changes makes a significant difference to the team’s success. Establishing desirable attitudes, actions and behaviours early on helps to avoid misunderstanding, enhancing respect and trust. This in turn provides the basis for greater creativity, clarity, focus and risk awareness. For example, teams that speak up and engage in healthy conflict are more likely to drive innovation as well as identify new risks early.


What are the Benefits?

Leaders’ expertise in human data analytics positions us perfectly to address these questions and issues. Using proven assessments, we are able to quickly identify: 


  • Key skills and potential blindspots.
  • Productive skills such as ambition, accountability, awareness and agility.
  • Counterproductive habits, such as a defeatist mindset.

This work enables us to bring keen insight to each individual and to the team as a whole. Our experience allows us to focus on the key issues, both at an individual level and team environment.


  • We highlight strengths and how these can be stretched further.
  • We raise potential areas of struggle and stress.
  • Are well placed to bring up issues that need to be addressed and overcome for an individual or team to be successful. 

Awareness is only the beginning of a process; our ethos is to provide the framework and draw out the tools and processes that will allow the team to focus on high-impact actions and overcome their potential blindspots.


How Does it Work?

We tailor our process to suit each of our clients; typically our work in this area incorporates the following:


  • Exploring the specific needs, cycle and expectations of the business. For example, a start-up situation requires a different approach to team building (and arguably different skills in the team) than a long-established family business. A business that is preparing for a future transaction (listing, merger etc.) needs a different approach than one that is steadily growing organically.


  • Using human data analytics, we identify the key skills, strengths, motivators and mindsets for each individual. We explore these initially in one one-to-one meetings to ensure that the insight resonates with each person and to draw out the three or four key areas on which to focus.


  • Hosting team offsite meetings to articulate why the team even exists. Using the data that we have gathered, we help articulate the core purpose of the business and this particular team. Connecting individual motivation with the needs and purpose of the business creates the conditions for great results. We use the offsite to raise team awareness including strategies to adapt to each other and the likely issues that the business will face. We facilitate the establishment of a set of expectations, attitudes and behaviours that constitute and signal respectful working - the foundation for trust.  We spend time with the leadership team identifying top three priorities and establishing a plan of action for each. 


  • Following the offsite, we support each individual with coaching and we “check in” with the team to hold them to account as they pursue their priorities. We also challenge where we observe attitudes and behaviours slipping from those identified at the offsite. This helps each individual and the team to stay on track as they establish positive habits.

Leaders’ approach is high impact, establishing the conditions that enable teams to achieve excellent results, with measurable and objective data as the basis. 

We are helping Channel Islands and London-based businesses to overcome their relational and practical hurdles, foster a more open culture and grasp new opportunities. How can we help your team formation and dynamics?

Get in touch with Phil Eyre to find out more.


About The Author | Phil Eyre

Phil is Leaders’ founder. He has an enthusiastic and inspiring style, drawing on his experience in business, academia and social sectors to help any leadership team to achieve phenomenal performance. Phil has sophisticated expertise in psychometrics and in the application of human data for individual, team and organisational success. He has trained with, and been mentored by, global leaders in this field, notably Dr Chuck Coker in the US. Phil began his career in the UK offshore finance industry in 1994, working for a wealth management company in Guernsey, Collins Stewart (CI) Limited, now Canaccord Genuity Wealth International. Phil was head of the company's Guernsey division, with a staff of 120 and assets under management of £4.5billion before resigning from executive responsibilities in 2008. Phil has served on the boards of three charities, including BMS World Mission, a UK charity with over 80 employees and a global reach. Phil also ran the Guernsey hub of a national theology college, received accreditation as a pastor in the Baptist Union of Great Britain and served as a non-executive director for Canaccord Genuity Wealth International. Phil is a member of the NED Forum and the Institute of Directors.

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