An Easy Way to Make a Hard Decision


“We know it has to be done, but it’s hard to do so without it being perceived as personal!” said Jess.

Do you occasionally face a similar situation?

In Jess’ case, it was just a simple thing: removing a former member of the team from the team’s chat group. But it was hard because they had a good relationship with the former team member.

Eventually, they created a new chat group (sans the former team member) and used it in place of the old one. I suspect it might have been easier if they didn’t have a good relationship with the former team member.

This “difficulty” shows up in other situation too, for example:


  • Starting the meeting on-time when one of the key participants has yet to arrive,
  • Getting someone to start or stop doing something,
  • Calling out someone for unacceptable behaviour.


We don’t want to offend another person, and much less wanting the other person to think that it’s personal. We don’t want to be the bad guy!

Yet by not acting, we allow the team’s interaction, perhaps even effectiveness, be compromised.

But this doesn’t have to be the case. There is an easy way!

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Ten Sample Team Norms to Get You Started


Are you trying to craft a set of norms for your team?

A well-crafted set of team norms is a great way to shape your team’s interactions and collaborations, allowing them to function more effectively and achieve greater impact.

If this is your first time crafting team norms, you might be wondering where to start. The process of crafting them is not complicated. To help you get started, I have listed some team norms for your consideration.

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How to Craft an Effective Team Norm


As a team leader, I want my team to work together effectively. Having a set of team norms is one way to shape how team members interact and work together.

There are several advantages to having a set of intentionally crafted team norms. The best time to do this is when the team is new and malleable. While you will face some challenges in reshaping your team’s norms if it has been around for a while, the benefits are still worth the efforts.

If you are thinking of crafting a set of team norms, here are some tips that could help you.

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Five Reasons for Having a Written Team Norm


Team norms exist, whether you like it or not. Any team that works together develops a certain set of norms over time.

These organically developed norms, which are often unspoken, help team members know how to behave and interact with one another. While some norms help the team function more effectively, other norms might erode the team’s effectiveness.

One norm (which I liked) from several teams I worked with gives team members the freedom to voice out differing opinion, even if those opinions are contrary to the team leader’s opinion. One norm I often observe (and don’t like) is that of keeping quiet during meetings because “it’s not going to make any difference!”

As a team leader, if I could have a set of constructive team norms that help my team work more effectively together, and not have any norms that might negatively impact the team, I would have a better team. I would then have more time to lead and empower the team and spend less time dealing with misunderstandings and mismatch of expectations.

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