The Five Functions of a Good team

Calo staff is a collection of teams, not a collection of individuals. Really good teams arent just made, they are continually being refined as a normal, healthy part of functioning as a good team. During our most recent staff training, Dr. Ken Huey highlighted the five functions of a good team (a twist on Pat Lencionis book) and how important it is for Calo staff, as a whole, to embrace these functions.  The five functions are trust, conflict management, commitment, accountability and focusing on results.


To have a functioning team, one thing is a must and that is Trust.  Trust is the foundation of a good team.  Trust is about being vulnerable.  The only way to gain trust is if concerns or problems arent buried and there are no hidden agendas.  Trust is gained through time and evidence.   

The second function of a good team is Conflict Management.  Great relationships are not characterized by the absence of conflict, but actually the ability to repair after a break (conflict).  Things that are damaging to relationships include passive or sarcastic comments and gossip. 


The third function of a good team is Commitment.  Buy-in does not require consensus.  He highlighted with our staff that they must believe in Calo and believe that the leadership team and therapists know what is best for our students.”  A student recently commented that, after 19 months in treatment (not all at Calo) Calo is the only thing that changed my life.   The Calo team is changing lives! 

The fourth item that creates a good team is Accountability.  High standards drive accountability.  Accountability often has a negative connotation, but its not necessarily negative.  Accountability is simply having high standards and taking responsibility, which includes both reprimands and praising.  It is not about keeping score. 


The final function of a good team is Focusing on Results.  That means there is no status or ego.  Its not about us.  We must believe that If the team fails, I fail and If I succeed, we succeed. 

As I view the work we do with students at Calo, the Treatment Team, which includes our parents/guardians, is the team that must function at the highest level. The Treatment Team must be founded on Trust, have healthy and proactive conflict management, be committed, demonstrate accountability and be focused on results. The results being that we are changing the lives of the students that we work with everyday.