A True Team!

Just 2 weeks ago, one team I work with, was finally ready to go out and have dinner and drinks. It was after a few weeks of struggles about processes, (a lack of )leadership and (unclear) demanding clients ánd a first successful release.

During the night, their name changed from “team 1” into : MaxPinguins.
Just because they could, I guess. And it was ‘just funny’ for a few days ( and embarrassing when meeting with the client too).
But then a team member came up with a clip from the movie “Pinguins of Madagascar”.
And within 10 minutes, they decorated the on- and offline board, created a yell, named each other nicknames, renamed “sprint” to “mission” and decorated the HipChat channel.

The Team

Now, they unite around the theme. They are proud on the team-as-a-team. They help each other citing movie scenes. During standups, they question each other about “making the mission a success”.

It’s a great real life example of how a name, an identity, really helped to unite / create a True Team.

So, whenever you struggle with the unity in a team, please do other stuff together then work. Go to dinner, go bowling, walk together, let them cook dinner at your/their place, just something else they are up to.

I read a post by Jurgen Appelo once about naming a team. As I remember it:
“If you don’t have a shared identity, you’ll never work as a team. A name is step one and essential”.

I’ve worked with many teams, and some are very open to building a team.
Others think it’s nonsense. They are just my colleagues, we just do our jobs. If you’re working with the latter: pick your timing for suggesting a non-work activity wise….

Bottom line:

  • Let the teams name themselves.
  • Doing non-work stuff might just be the right moment to come up with one.
  • Respect and use the name carefully: it’s their identity.
  • Enjoy the True Team

Want help in your company? Contact me for (Agility) coaching

Events I'm attending

Veranderkunde - Unloop model
Friday 07 October, 2022  | Unloop

Een dag samen-werken met mensen uit het Unloop netwerk, olv Steven van den Heuvel.
Zijn drive om te gaan voor echte verandering, liefst in maatschappelijk relevante context, maakt dat ik me verheug op deze dag!

All attended events

About me

I'm currently working as a Scrum Master & team coach at the NPO, the Dutch broadcasting company, to help the teams setting (and getting) their goals.

More about me or read my articles.