Yesterday morning during practice 16 with a team of producers, we teed up three top performers and played with some deliberate practice. We dissected the secret sauce from Ceph, Rogue, and Sprague (pronounced spray goo). These three took curious questions for 42 minutes and offered up anything asked of them. As I listened in and tried to find the melody line it became apparent these three are strong in similar and unique ways. First, lets look at what is similar. All three prepare like banshees. All three understand the specific skills that make them strong. All three have an appetite for good work. All three are believers. They really believe.
Rogue is tough. He believes his job is to eliminate weak competitors. He walks into his clients offices with crystal clarity around his value prop. You cannot miss this. When Rogue speaks you want to listen. Ceph is tender. He believes his job is to understand everything about his client. He walks into his clients office and they know he’s there to help. His trust starts deep and goes deeper. Sprague is a lawyer and a systems thinker by education and training. He thinks about what could go wrong and, unlike many law men, he has empathy – lots of it too. He thinks and feels. His clients can’t miss his combination as competence.
Rogue understands his clients strategically. Ceph understands them relationally. Sprague is in between these two. Together, these three are dynamite – TNT, if you will. Tough and tender. Rogue. Sprague. Ceph. TNT. Good.
Like any team, the magic is in how they come together. Today, this team got better because more of the signature strengths got exposed to the air. We let them out in the open where they belong. We, as an extended team, got curious with these three even though some of us may have thought we were one of the top performers – not them. Humility informs genuine curiosity and both were built yesterday morning. The first step, remember, in building expertise is always a deeper study of your domain specific experts. The elite, btw, study themselves and other elite around them. Nobody, remember, is as smart as everybody. Humility tells the elite to keep working ’cause there’s always more skill to build. Good.
Certainly, this system has many other performers with expertise as, most likely, does yours. The problem is that most of the specific skills that lead to expertise are not out in the open. Many systems have high performers who believe their secret sauce, if you will, ought to stay their secret. Sharing with their teammates, they believe, makes them less, not more. This is a belief in scarcity. Scarcity leads to hoarding. This kinda mentality turns us into takers. Takers don’t make great teammates and a team of takers will never reach their full potential. Not good.
Here’s what I believe. I believe we humans are most human when we’re giving. We come from a God who can’t give enough. We’re designed by Him to slowly, as we mature in both strength and humility to become more of a giver and less a taker. Today, a few elite performers gave away some of their secrets. They did not become less. They became more, more human, more known, more consciously competent, and more aware of each other and how they can best do good work for those clients they are called to serve. Good.
Want a better team, my friend? Become more human. In the process of becoming more human you will become a better version of yourself. You will feel better eventually even though it may hurt acutely cutting out some of your self limiting habit along the road to becoming. Give anyway. Give. Give. Give. Give like Ceph, Rogue, and Sprague. Give ’cause you want to. Practice abundance. Give freely. Good work today, team of producers. Good work. Remember, keep working, keep working, keep working. I believe we can trust God at His word. Give it time, my friend, you’ll see. Someday, you’re gonna learn to trust your teammates. When you build deep trust you will become TNT – it will be good. You will become more. And, when you least expect it, something special will be added to your sauce too.
You will receive…