I admit it, I like to win. My wife makes fun of me for turning everything into a competition. A few of the bigger fights we’ve had in our marriage revolved around her amazing ability to beat me in most games (I’m looking at you Settlers of Catan). As you can imagine, being competitive is not always good, and I’m working on it (hoping to become the least competitive of all my friends).
But, there is a good side to competition. Winning teams change the world. A winning team of doctors may keep you alive. A winning team of scientists may find the medical breakthrough. A winning team of politicians may change national policy. Winning at your job can help you get a promotion. A winning team will be able to make a difference in the area they’re serving and accomplish great things. You want to be on and lead a winning team!
So, let me ask you this, if you lead any sort of team, “Is your team winning?” I love that question because many of us will have no idea.
I read a book a while ago called Deep and Wideby Andy Stanley. One of the most practical ideas I took from the book was this concept of winning. He encouraged every team in their church to define their win. First, they wrote down their big picture win. Second each team wrote down 2 or 3 measurable wins they could use to help them know they’re on the path to winning.
Defining your Win
Andy encourages teams to define their major win in one simple phrase. So, simply put, what is your team trying to accomplish? This phrase should be more big picture and vision oriented. It should give you something to work towards. It should inspire your team to achieve greatness. Since I love coffee, I’ll use Starbucks as an example. They hope to, “become the premier purveyor of the finest coffee in the world…” This is a big statement that helps aim their efforts in the right direction. What about your team?
After you determine your team’s big win, it’s time to define measurable wins. You should come up with 2 0r 3 very specific milestones that will let you know if you’re winning.
Going back to Starbucks, they could know they were winning if they were:
Opening up more, financially profitable stores
Developing new relationships with potential coffee regions
Increasing baristas coffee knowledge
Each of these wins is achievable and measurable. When it comes to your team, once you have defined your win, it’s now time to write down your own 2 or 3 measurable wins. If your team was winning, how would you know? What are a few major things they would be doing?
You can not create a team that accomplishes anything substantial without first understanding what you’re trying to accomplish. Have you ever seen how fast a Nascar pit crew can change a tire? How about gas and tires in 8 seconds! The reason they can work so fast is they know exactly what they’re trying to accomplish as a team and the role each person plays to accomplish that goal. What about your team?