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December 22, 2016

Leadership Team Composition

Leadership Team Composition

We’ve heard this many times… “it’s important to have a team with well-rounded strengths”, but we tend to forget, this is also important in having a diverse leadership or coaching team.

Over the years, Gallup has studied thousands of executive teams.

As they worked with these leadership teams, they began to see that while each member had his/her own strengths, the most cohesive and successful leadership teams possessed broader groupings of strengths.

From their study data, 4 distinct Domains of Leadership Strength emerged:

  • Executing
  • Influencing
  • Relationship Building
  • Strategic Thinking

While these categories appear to be general, especially when compared to the specific talent themes within StrengthsFinder, it struck Gallup that these broader categories of strengths could be useful for thinking about how leaders can contribute to a team.

These broad Leadership Strength Domains offer a more practical lens for also looking at the composition of a team.

They found this beneficial to the leadership team and the team members.

They found that it serves a team well to have a representation of strengths in each of these four domains. Instead of one dominant leader who tries to do everything or team members who have similar strengths, contributions from all four domains, lead to a strong and cohesive team.

Although individuals need not be well-rounded, teams should be.

This doesn’t mean that each person on a team must have strengths exclusively in a single category. In most cases, each team member will possess some strength in multiple domains.

So as you think about how you can contribute to a team and who you need to surround yourself with, this may be a helpful starting point.

As you think through this… how does your leadership team and team member composition stack up?

Does it have the right strengths?

StrengthsFinder – Gallup, Tom Rath, Dr. Don Clifton

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