How to understand your team?

Your team

Do you understand your team? Chances are there are many aspects that you do not understand that can hinder your team and reduce productivity.

In the paper policy entrepreneurship at the white house a whiteboard of productivity ideas was presented as a way in which to promote effective teamwork. The motivation is that the ideas on the whiteboard can be used as a thought provoking resources and also as a means to understand what resonates with your team. By presenting these ideas and finding out which ones are important to each team member this can help you to better understand your team.

My personal favourites from this list of ideas to improve productivity:

  1. You can get more done if you don’t care who gets the credit
  2. Think of the end at the beginning
  3. Don’t be a bottleneck
  4. If you want people to do something, make it easy

This topic was discussed on a twitter thread in which further quotes and ideas were proposed. My favourite additions from this discussion are:


  • Change moves at the speed of trust [source]
  • Wonder with people [source]
  • Get excited about other peoples ideas as you do about your own [source]
  • Does it make the boat go faster? [source]
  • Stay on mission, not on task [source]


  • Its ok to say “I don’t know” [source]
  • Don’t equate experience with knowledge [source]

Further reading

You can check my coverage of the suggestions from the community and also the worksheet that I developed and proposed to understand the management style of your teams.

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