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Is it me? The Question We Should All Ask More…

ask is it me teammates taking responsibility

In a recent virtual workshop I did for an organization, I encouraged everyone to ask themselves the question, “Is it me?”

It’s an accountability question. It’s a look inward and do your part kind of question. It’s the kind of question that builds relationships and improves performance. 

As part of my workshops I always ask participants to complete an assessment that puts this question, “Is it me?,” squarely on the shoulders of each of them.

The assessment includes a scale – three being most of the time, two being some of the time and one being rarely – for each question. I have included below a small portion of that assessment around the principle of selflessness so that you can get an idea of the types of questions asked (you can see the full assessment in“You Are the Team – 6 Simple Ways Teammates Can Go from Good to Great.”)

I Selfless 

1. I find opportunities to help and serve others on my team.

2. I actively look for ways to help others on my team shine.

3. I think about my teammates’ needs.

4. I put the team’s needs ahead of my own aspirations and recognition.

By answering each question, teammates begin to understand their personal role in helping the team succeed. 

The assessment came about as a result of a highly dysfunctional leadership team I had done some consulting work for, about five years ago.

As part of that work with this team, I interviewed each of them and found a strong common theme – no one would take personal responsibility. Each team member pointed fingers and put the blame for the team’s dysfunction on everyone else. 

Team members had failed to look inwardly and ask, “Is it me?”

However, I knew that each of them had some portion of the responsibility for the decaying relationships and resulting lack of team collaboration. 

I created and administered the assessment talked about above as a result and then something magical happened. Members of that team were forced to look inwardly and see their responsibility in the team dysfunction. Positive changes begin to take place immediately and the team hasn’t been the same since. That assessment became the basis of my first book!

Next time you get the urge to point a finger, say an unkind thing or make a quick judgement, ask, “Is it me?” We all benefit from your honesty!