During her sermon this past Sunday at St. John’s Anglican Church, Reverend Cathy Pharo shared “three things that tear down a family, a church, or a nation”…or a team!
Complacency is the smug satisfaction with where you are now and no need to change or improve. As with any success in life, it takes energy and momentum to keep it that way. We’ve all heard these bromides: Don’t rest on your laurels. When you think everything is going great, that’s when life gives you a sucker punch. If you always do what you’ve always done, you’ll always get what you’ve always got. Oh, how the mighty have fallen! A great team is always striving to get better and continuously improve.
Resentment is bitter indignation at being treated unfairly. But it goes far beyond being fair and equitable. Obviously, the Ten Commandments reference when one “covets” what another person has. And then there is the resentment that comes when one thinks they are better than others. Reverend Farro did a rather convincing imitation of Jack Nicholsen and Tom Cruise in A Few Good Men:
“JESSUP: You want answers?
KAFFEE: I want the truth!
JESSUP: You can’t handle the truth! Son we live in a world that has walls, and those have to be guarded by men with guns. … I have neither the time, nor the inclination, to explain myself to a man, who rises and sleeps under the blanket of the very freedom that I provide, and then questions the manner, in which I provide it.”
Resentment also occurs when one thinks they are worse off than others on the team. I call this the Eeyore Syndrome where everyone has it better and Eeyore keeps getting the short end of the stick.
Fear is the feeling of anxiety about something that could be dangerous, painful, or threatening. Fear keeps us from stretching outside our comfort zone, holding on to power/what we know, trying something new, or dealing with potential risks and negative consequences.
When I think about the teams that have gone sideways, one of the root causes was either complacency, resentment, or fear. What’s your experience?
KRISTIN ARNOLD, MBA, CPF | Master, CSP is a high-stakes meeting facilitator and professional panel moderator. She’s been facilitating teams of executives and managers in making better decisions and achieving greater results for over 27 years. She is the author of the award-winning book, Boring to Bravo: Proven Presentation Techniques to Engage, Involve and Inspire Audiences to Action. Her latest book, 123 Ways to Add Pizazz to a Panel Discussion was published in January 2021.