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HCI Webinar: Cultivating a High-Performing Team Culture, with Kimberly Gerber

In the latest HCI Webinar, Dr. Jonathan H. Westover talks with Kimberly Gerber about cultivating a high-performing team culture! Check out the full episode and let us know what you think!


Watch the episode here:


Cultivating High-Performance Team Culture


Jonathan and Kimberly discussed the concept of cultivating a high-performance team culture. Kimberly, a leadership development expert, shared her experience as a marketing director and how her understanding of what motivates people influenced her coaching and training. Jonathan and Kimberly agreed that a high-performance team culture is one where a group of people work together for a common purpose, making decisions and executing plans that serve the whole business. In response to Jonathan's question about the first steps in this process, Kimberly emphasized the importance of creating a charter.


Team Chartering Significance


Kimberly discussed the importance of team chartering and its significance for leaders. She highlighted that leaders often overlook the process or are unaware of its existence, leading to teams that may not function optimally. Kimberly emphasized that the chartering process requires a team leader to consider the team's purpose, its members, and how they will work together. She also noted that the process is not just about team building but also establishing a foundation for how the team will operate.


Team Charters and Organizational Development


Jonathan and Kimberly discussed the importance of team charters in organizational development and change management. Jonathan emphasized the need for structured teamwork, particularly when working with students who may have had negative experiences in group projects. Kimberly highlighted the value of the "road rules" process, which involves team members identifying their individual values and expectations for the team's behavior. Both agreed that the charter provides a foundation for teamwork and helps to overcome communication barriers.


Nurturing Talent for High-Performing Teams


Jonathan and Kimberly discussed the metaphor of cultivating a garden and its application in the workplace or classroom. They emphasized that building a high-performing team involves proactive effort, understanding the team's needs in terms of skill sets and competencies, and nurturing the talent within the team. Kimberly underscored the importance of using personality and talent development tools to understand each team member and create a balanced team. She also highlighted the value of cross-pollinating team members for projects and creating a psychologically safe environment where team members can admit their weaknesses and ask for help.


Conflict Resolution and Emotional Intelligence in Leadership


Jonathan expressed his thoughts on approaches to conflict resolution as a leader, emphasizing the need for emotional intelligence and psychological safety. He also raised a concern about team members facing conflicts with their team leads. Kimberly, in response, revealed her background as a certified mediator and expressed her belief in the importance of mediating team conflicts. They both agreed on the need for navigating power differentials within teams for high performance.


Discussing Conflict Resolution Strategies


Kimberly and Jonathan discussed the way to handle conflicts within teams. They highlighted the importance of acknowledging the parties involved, letting each express themselves, and constructing a group dialogue. Kimberly suggested using a project to expose the value of each team member's approach, which can help resolve conflicts. Jonathan agreed, noting that understanding and interaction with the other person can help manage professional frustrations and navigate differences. Kimberly stressed the need to start the process of conflict resolution, regardless of the power dynamic between the parties involved. She also emphasized the need to build rapport and not let resentments fester. Jonathan stressed the importance of starting from a place of trust and generosity towards team members. Kimberly shared her website as a resource for more information and emphasized the importance of trust in building high-performing teams.


Listen to the episode here:

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