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Do you have a Leadership Team or a Team of Leaders?

There is a distinct difference between the two, even though it may not be obvious to you. As a Leadership Team Coach and Strategic Business Guide, I see both every day. I will tell you, to be successful in business, whether you are growing or scaling, you need to have a Leadership Team not a team of leaders. Here’s why:  

  1. A Leadership Team takes a holistic approach to the business and is aware of everything that is happening in the organization. The members of a Leadership Team focus on the organization first. They are accountable for the work they own but they know exactly how their team impacts the overall success of the business. The Leadership Team focuses on optimizing for the success of the business. Communication is also a HUGE differentiator for a Leadership Team.  They are always in the know. 

  2. A Team of Leaders tends to be more siloed and focused only on their teams and their team’s performance. When asked about what is happening in other areas of the business the members of a Team of Leaders tend to shy away or disconnect from the conversation. Communication is a challenge with a Team of Leaders because they don’t see their impact being intertwined.  Trust can also be missing in a team that is siloed and not working together for the greater good.  


Both a Leadership Team and a Team of Leaders can grow and scale a business successfully. The path you take will be different based on the team you have.  

A good test to see if you have a Leadership Team or a Team of Leaders:  

Find money in your budget, say $10,000 to invest somewhere in the business. In your next Weekly Tactical Meeting let the team know that there is $10,000 to invest but you’d like to discuss where it should be spent. A Leadership Team will evaluate everyone’s suggestions and make the decision based on the vision of the organization. Even if it means not getting the money in their team or division. The decision will be what is truly best for the business to grow. A Team of Leaders will sit and debate on why they should get the money. One team member will likely be hurt that they didn’t get the investment.  

Can you convert a Team of Leaders to a Leadership Team?   

Yes. I have coached many teams from a Team of Leaders to a Leadership Team. You’ll need a compelling vision, a Success System in place, and a lot of time to devote to the transition. As the Leader of the business, your job is to create a Leadership Team that will carry the business to its next level. Devoting time to developing this team is a priority. Maybe your only priority depending on the state of the team.  

Where do you start? Create a Leadership SMaC Recipe to set a foundation. Jim Collins coined this concept, and it can truly help you develop a Leadership Team. Creating a Specific, Methodical, and Consistent directive for those who lead your team will create a reference for you to train and guide those you believe to be your team!  

 A sample SMaC Recipe for Executive Leadership Teams:  

  1. Vision First – When making decisions consider Vision First.  

  2. Be Collaborative – A team collaborates to win.  

  3. Close the Feedback Loop – Tell the team the job is done.  

  4. Use the System – Our Success System will ensure it all works. Use it.   

  5. Be a Training Company – Train our teams to be successful. 

  6. Say Why – Remind everyone of WHY we do what we do.  

  7. Be Aware – Know what’s happening in every area of the business.  

  8. Recognize – Share what’s good and recognize those who do it.   

  9. Always Improve – Look for ways to improve, inside and outside your area.  

  10. Communicate – Communicate as if the vision depends on it.   

If you need help transforming your team from a Team of Leaders to a Leadership Team, lets chat. Go to and start a conversation with one of our Strategic Business Guides.   


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