Hope is not a Strategy when Building High-Performance Teams


Hope is not a Strategy

Each morning at our daily Stand-Up meeting, a team member shares an inspirational challenge with the group. There is no official structure or formal outlines and the tone typically changes from day to day. Sometimes the challenges relate directly to family and personal life. Other times it remains very professional. But most often, the inspiration can be applied to many different aspects of life and is up for interpretation by the individuals.

One of our recent inspirational challenges was “hope is not a strategy”. It played off a video we watched together about a rock climber who had an almost-fatal fall. His life was saved by piton that was “luckily” left in the mountain by a previous climber. He vowed to never again allow himself to be in a situation where he was unprepared and had only luck to hope for.

Although most of us in the room have never been extreme rock climbing, we discussed several ways this applied to us. For example, professionally, you would never want to go into a sales meeting without properly researching the client. You must know their business needs not just “hope” they won’t ask detailed questions of how you would add value. There are many other examples that are much more simple. Driving on an expired license or waiting until the last minute to buy a birthday card forces you to unnecessarily rely on luck. Hoping you don’t get pulled over or the store is still open is not a strategy.

Leadership Techniques for Building High-Performance Teams

The daily inspirational challenges also build leadership among the team. Because the process is not structured or assigned, every morning one team member takes the initiative to come up with and share the challenge. It is a small yet powerful way in which we encourage every member of our team to be a leader.

We are building high-performance teams each day by encouraging different people to step up and lead the meeting and inspire the group along the way. It exercises the leadership skills of all team members instead of always falling to the functional leaders of the organization.

Corporate Leadership Development Is a Key Part of Having a Strong Team

Along with daily inspirational challenges that come from all members of or organization, building high-performance teams is made possible with training workshops and corporate leadership development programs. These programs bring together entire organizations or smaller groups to inspire and align teams. This structured training reinforces the leadership skills used when leading the stand-up meetings with an inspirational challenge each day.


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