Monday, November 8, 2010

Teamwork - Virtue or Choice?

I came across a video clip of various snippets of Patrick Lencioni speaking about his book The Five Dysfunctions of a Team. I found this quote worthy of discussion: "Teamwork is not a virtue. Teamwork is a choice we have to make; however, it's a choice that has a cost." Patrick refers to teams that come together in crisis and are often disappointed with their results.

Have you been a member of a dysfunctional team? Our Incident Command System is designed to handle such situations. How does your team function in a crisis situation? Does your team function well as part of the larger organization?

In one of the clips Patrick asks the crowd which team--the team at the top of the organization or the team that the individual leads (a department or crew)--is more important. Most answer that it is the team the individual leads; however, Patrick claims the leadership team of the organization is most important. We do a great job with local level leadership, but how well do we do when we come together as a larger team?

The leaders of wildland fire organizations set the example for those below them. They have the opportunity to make a difference in the future of wildland fire service. Investment in the Wildland Fire Leadership Program, albeit expensive, prepares the organization for the future and helps all come together more efficiently and effectively in times of crisis and in our day-to-day operations.

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