I used to not swear at all. I thought it was wrong to use foul language. When I started BTL back in 2002, I learned to swear to get my clients attention. It mostly worked and became something I overly relied upon over time. A few years ago, I swore off swearing, more or less. I still swear, on occasion but much, much less. Last night that changed. Last night I let loose with a barrage of profanity. Nothing seems to work with this team and it felt like the timing was right to pull out all the stops. I did a lot more than swear, however. I gave this team hard truth they could use, whether they do or not is on them. I did my job as best I knew how. You see, as a BTL builder, you use whatever is necessary to cause growth in another. It’s our responsibility to be a catalyst for growth, even if we dissolve by so doing. Unlike a true catalyst, the builder does change as a result of “being the change” we want to see in any of our family, friends, and clients. Our aim is to build individuals and teams that are deeply united in talking truth, building deep trust, and tasting team chemistry. Most teams are miles from flow. This team has many miles still to go.
Moments of team chemistry always remind me of the Spartan 300. Here’s an exerpt from the book Gates of Fire, by Steven Pressfield describing the secret sauce of Spartan chemistry. Check it out. The man nicknamed “Suicide” was not a leader – just another teammate.
“When I first came to Lakedaemon and they called me ‘Suicide,’ I hated it. But in time I came to see its wisdom, unintentional as it was. For what can be more noble than to slay oneself? Not literally. Not with a blade in the guts. But to extinguish the selfish self within, that part which looks only to its own preservation, to save its own skin. That, I saw, was the victory you Spartans had gained over yourselves. That was the glue. It was what you had learned and it made me stay, to learn it too. When a warrior fights not for himself, but for his brothers, when his most passionately sought goal is neither glory nor his own life’s preservation, but to spend his substance for them, his comrades, not to abandon them, not to prove unworthy of them, then his heart truly has achieved contempt for death, and with that he transcends himself and his actions touch the sublime. This is why the true warrior cannot speak of battle save to his brothers who have been there with him. This truth is too holy, too sacred, for words.”
Want a better team? Die to self. Kill your selfish ambitions. Build big, crazy big, ambitions for the team. Give what you want from your teammates. Give without restriction or expectation of return. Give because you want to. Give. Glue comes when someone gives. Not all of us can be the man, so to speak. Anybody on the team, however, can be the glue.
Gain victory over your selfishness. Build crazy big, ambition for the team. Fight for them. Be the Glue , not the self absorbed, less mature version of you. Be the glue. Good…