“It’s all about connection,” Pablo said. “If a team member is connected closely with their manager, most likely they will remain engaged. If the team member becomes disconnected from their manager, or connected to a toxic manager, the job search has already begun.”
“Only the manager?” I asked.
“The manager relationship is the key, with a supporting cast of the team,” Pablo explained. “Conceptually, a manager’s accountability is simple (not easy). Create connection, prevent disconnection.”
“That’s the popularity of team exercises,” I said.
“The problem with exercises is just that. Exercises are exercises. They startup muscle memory, but if you really want to build a team, give them a real problem to solve. Stand back. Allow the team to struggle. In that struggle, you will see some things occur. Leadership will emerge, automatically. Leadership takes the form of restating the problem, clarifying the obstacles and laying down the challenge. If the problem is complex, it will require expertise in specific areas, team members will consult, rely on each other to help carry the burden. In essence, problem solving builds connection.”