Integral TeamWork; Building Extra-ordinary Team Performance

By Jay Davies, ID Consultant and Researcher

The essence of Integral Teamwork is based on Ken Wilber’s Integral Theory and makes a powerful difference in the workplace because it includes ways to improve individual well being, team culture, team effectiveness and team efficiency. Many teams in the workplace operate effectively and efficiently but have minimal regard for the individuals or the culture in which they work. Corporate leaders are increasingly recognising that for a team to continually work at high levels of performance the work needs to be satisfying, meaningful and individual team members need to be appreciated for their contribution.

Integral Development has a range of tools and processes that can help leaders and their teams take steps toward achieving sustainable, balanced and high level performance. These include;
• The Integral Team Effectiveness Measure
• Integral TeamWork Workshops 1& 2 days
• Team ‘Rolles’ Profile
• Team Coaching
• Evaluation of My Contribution to a Team

ID facilitators help a team to recognise its potential by first defining what dimensions of Integral TeamWork are working well and what are the specific areas in need of improvement. Action plans, timelines, responsibilities and coaching are put in place to ensure progress is made. ID has worked with a large number of teams in the private, public and not-for-profit sectors such as Wesfarmers, Silver Chain, The Royal Navy and local governments to progress toward Integral TeamWork. ID has also worked with a number of executive teams to build cohesion, focus and commitment of the senior executives to all be moving in the same direction.

At the core of Integral Teamwork is individual effectiveness and development. ID teaches each team member a number of techniques and skills to help them become ‘integral’ to the team. Team leaders are also taught what they need to do to be a role model of teamwork and effective leadership.

A unique dimension of Integral Teamwork is the team’s ability to provide its product and services in a way that does no harm to the environment. This involves all individual performance as well as the whole team to operate in a way that minimises any harm to the environment and truly create a workplace that is aligned with the world it operates in.

Some may question whether this approach is idealistic or practical. It is not so much a question of teams adopting an Integral way of working but when they will. With increasing competition, increasing customer expectation for outstanding quality at the lowest possible prices and the pressure to operate an environmentally friendly business, integral teamwork is not just a nice way to do business it will be the only way we can operate our teams if they are to succeed in the future.

Team Building with Executive Coaching

by Ken Milling, ID Executive Coach

Whilst Integral Development’s individual executive coaching is a stand alone process, it can adhere to organisational objectives, like team building.

Every organisation has its own culture and this culture reflects the values of the people who create and initiate the policies that govern the organisation. Within a team it is imperative that its members are aware of their personal values and how they interface with the values of the organisation.

The Integral Development coaching process facilitates individual change in a safe and supportive environment where executive team members can address specific issues that in turn enable them to function more effectively as members of the executive team.

The Integral Development coaching process involves a number of clear steps.

• The Integral Development executive coaches meet as a group to discuss with our managing director, the team building objective and mission of the client organisation.

• The Integral Development executive coach meets with the individual client, establishing a safe and supportive environment for the ongoing coaching process, with the emphasis on confidentiality.

• The Integral Development executive coach guides the individual client to identifying and clarifying individual issues that pertain to functioning more effectively as a team member.

• The Integral Development executive coach establishes with the individual client, aims and objectives and an action plan that interfaces with the client organisation team building objectives.

• The Integral Development executive coach facilitates and supports the individual client in working through their individual action plan and transitions of change to achieve individual change that contributes to team cohesion.

The ultimate test of a team is to deliver the goods and services. A well-functioning team is able to achieve results that are beyond the capabilities of an individual in isolation. Team members can provide mutual support and enjoy the collective vitality and potency of the group. With a developing team spirit it is possible for team members to share confidences, personal difficulties and doubts and work through these as a cohesive force, in turn bolstering the robustness of the team.

As a team matures it becomes possible to work through more difficult group dynamics, like hostility, aggression and competitiveness, and to harness the individual and group energy in constructive ways that facilitate the mission of the organisation.

Lifestyle Change

by Ken Milling, ID Executive Coach

In a previous eBulletin we looked at manageable ways to initiate lifestyle change with regard to fitness and, specifically, a training regimen that included 3 x 5-minute morning walks per week. Our main objective was to establish a routine that would become integral to our usual commute.

Walking helps us get away from directed thinking, allowing the left hemisphere of the brain to give way to the right hemisphere, with its greater capacity to see the big picture and create imaginative leaps. By initiating the 3 x 5-minute walks as part of our usual weekly morning commute, we not only established a baseline of regular exercise, but also gave ourselves 3 x 5-minute mental and emotional ‘breathers’.

The time has now come to increase our baseline of regular exercise. This can be done in a variety of ways, but I suggest that we up our 3 x 5-minute walks to 5 x 5-minutes as part of our usual morning commute and add a 5 x 5-minute or 5 x 10-minute walk during our lunch break. Perhaps this could be achieved by increasing the distance walked every day to purchase your lunch or the distance walked away from the office to a quiet place where you can sit to eat your lunch.

For those of us already on board – by increasing our baseline of regular exercise as described above we are gradually introducing a manageable lifestyle change that is integral to our usual routine and we will realise the myriad benefits. For the others, we encourage you to jump on board now with the 3 x 5-minute morning walks per week, perhaps increasing to a couple of 5 x 5-minute or 5 x 10-minute walks in your lunch break so that we are all at the same level before the next edition of The eBulletin.