What makes a good organization great? A strong team working together with a clearly defined purpose. The cohesiveness and organizational might that builds strong teams often begins at the top, with leadership leading by example and focused on achieving objectives at every level.

While building a culture of trust and embracing conflict can as an impetus for change are some of the key components of a strong leadership team, it’s also important to look at commitment, or lack thereof. As Patrick Lencioni writes in The Five Dysfunctions of a Team, “In the context of a team, commitment is a function of two things: clarity and buy-in. Great teams make clear and timely decisions and move forward with complete buy-in from every member of the team, even those who voted against the decision. They leave meetings confident that no one on the team is quietly harboring doubts about whether to support the actions agreed on.”

A lack of commitment can not only slow progress, it can lead team members to develop an avoidance of accountability, which can have far-reaching consequences. To develop or increase commitment with leadership teams, I have found several approaches to be quite effective:

Look for strengths – Kevin Eikenberry, a leadership expert and author, says that while you may see your team member’s strengths already, to build commitment it’s important to, “Spend time consciously thinking about what they do well and in what situations they excel. Think about how often they use those strengths in their current roles. Think about how you (and they) might be able to further use those strengths in their work.”

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Author: Rand O'Leary

Rand O’Leary, FACHE most recently served as the PeaceHealth Chief Executive for the Oregon Network. Rand joined PeaceHealth in 2014 and had oversight for operations in Oregon at Sacred Heart Medical Center, RiverBend in Springfield, University District Medical Center in Eugene, Cottage Grove Community Medical Center in Cottage Grove and Peace Harbor Medical Center in Florence. Rand is an experienced healthcare executive and leader, seasoned by over 20 years of leadership in Surgical Services, Neurosciences, Cardiovascular, Ambulatory and Physician Practice Operations during tenures at Borgess Medical Center in Kalamazoo, Michigan, a 425-bed tertiary referral and teaching hospital and member of Ascension Health and the 537-bed St. Joseph Mercy Hospital in Ann Arbor Michigan, the flagship hospital of the St. Joseph Mercy Health System and a member of Trinity Health.