Why We Are Raising The Bar on Team Performance
I have been on a stage my entire professional career. Being on a stage, my voice has always been amplified through a microphone. One thing I have learned: being heard takes more than raising the volume – it also involves speaking clearly, annunciation, articulation, listening, and the help of great sound technicians.
One of the best sound technicians I ever worked with was Adam. Each week he took his place at the vast sound board, knowing just what it took to make my ‘sound‘. More than raising the volume, he was also mixing the various tones needed to create the right sound. No matter how much I prepared, without Adam I would not sound right.
When leading, working harder alone – increasing the volume – will not achieve your desired results. As leaders, we need others to help us create and shape the right sound, those people who can influence our sound and those who know the environment, the audience and the needs of the moment.
Increase the Volume
Creating a better sound takes more than increasing the volume. Increasing volume alone will lead to distortion and one’s voice being unrecognizable. The sound of your voice is unique, and when we are asked to be on our stage, our voice needs to sound right. Sound is a composition, a mixture, a nuancing of many smaller sounds and adjustments that come together to form what people hear. In the hands of the right technician who knows how to mix it right, one’s voice can be made to sound inviting, mysterious, or even robotic.
When I was faced with challenging the Leadership Vision Consulting team to reach for a new level of excellence, I knew this would take more than raising the volume. Meeting this challenge would also involve the right mix of people, content and overall team chemistry.
So this challenge to raise the volume and mix it right was introduced by the man who is coaching me in our business development.
Yes, I believe that we have a great team.
Yes, I believe we have a specific team sound… but it needs to get better.
Each team member needed to enhance and develop their voice again – their contribution to the team and to our client services. Each team member needed to listen and help create the right mix – each sharing in the mixing and connecting to the right LVC sound. Raising the volume and mixing it right is not just my responsibility – our team shares in the creating, developing and perfecting of our sound.
Going on Tour
A great band can rehearse and rehearse, even put together a great album, without knowing how they will be received by their audience. This is one of the reasons a band goes on tour: to experience how the audience responds to their music. Great bands give great live shows, their excellence is heard and the audience responds. I knew that for our team to raise their standard of excellence, we need to hit the road.
I identified several upcoming events spanning 3-4 weeks and decided this time frame would be when we would shoot for a new level of delivery. When we faced this challenge of bettering our client services, I knew we faced a challenge involving more than simply increasing our volume. Yes, I needed to raise the volume of each of our team member – specifically challenging them to ‘raise their game‘. I also needed to listen closely and offer specific, constructive affirmation, feedback and development.
Getting the Right Mix
We also needed to mix it right. When one team member raises their volume, increases their engagement in our events, betters their teaching or enhances their relational connections… it impacts and effects the sound of the rest of the team. At first, the team may sound out of tune because the sound quality of others may not be where it needs to be. We need to mix it, we need to each raise our game to another level so we are in tune again.
Being in tune is as much a chemistry and synchronicity as it is knowing the music and content of our services. Each member of our team needs to bring both sides: knowledge of our content, process and delivery – our music and volume. Each team member needs to also listen to our sound, our chemistry, our synchronicity – getting the mix right.
We need to be aware of who we are, our voice, and how we are heard. We need to be constantly aware of our sound, when we need to work together when we need to solo, to be in melody and when we need to be in harmony.
Why Is This Important to Raise the Volume and Mix It Right?
- Because I believe that our team can do better, that we can be better at our work.
- Because I have seen and heard each member of my team when they are at their best.
- Because I know we have unique talents and experience at the work we do.
- Because I know I need to embrace the challenge to lead out of my own strengths, vision and voice.
We each have more we can give.
We each have a voice that others need to hear.
We each have something that has yet to be discovered and given away.
So lets raise the volume, lets mix it just right, lets perfect our sound…
Then lets go on tour and give it away.
There is an audience waiting for us…