One of the joys and the challenges of consulting is you get to walk in and work with different teams on a regular basis. These brilliant experiences also come with challenges as you have to fit into that team without losing true self, without losing confidence, without losing strength as you bend, twist and positively turn yourself into a pretzel trying to take a team (that you don’t have any leadership of, remember you are just a consultant, a guide) on a journey toward a goal.
Sometimes that team will become a tribe and sometimes it doesn’t. One of the most important things in work and in life, I’ve come to realise, is the team you work with. It can affect every aspect of your life mentally and emotionally and ultimately this impacts your performance.
I always employ people who are better than me in certain areas, who bring a diversity of experience and views. This ensures that you are constantly challenging yourself to reflect and be the best you can be. This does not mean that argumentative, negative or condescending behaviour is acceptable.
So, when you choose your tribe, choose well (and this doesn’t mean a team of people like you). When you can’t choose your tribe (and even when you can), use it to learn more about yourself, use it to learn how to manage better, how to structure better. Importantly through the good times and the bad, it is critical to not lose your authentic self to not be pulled into the noise or respond emotionally, keep it objective without becoming a homo-economicus in the process.