"POSITIVE EXPECTATIONS HELP CREATE A POSITIVE CULTURE."
A great way to help build a positive culture is to work with your team members to build a list of "Agreed Upon Expectations of Our Team Members." These are expectations, not rules, so there is no penalty for noncompliance. Think of them as suggestions.
You can take your group (subculture) of 5 to 20 that you work with daily and ask them individually or collectively to come up with a list of behaviors of a teammate they like and behaviors of a teammate they don't like. You take the "do not like behaviors" and turn them into positive statements. For example: "I don't like to be yelled at" becomes "I appreciate a courteous tone of voice."
Compile the results and get the team members to agree to them and you have a powerful document that you can coach from. Make sure you can model the behavior, or they will be destructive. Here is an example, courtesy of Coach Wooden's Pyramid of Success and his great maxims (feel free to use any of these as a starting point if your team likes them):
"Agreed Upon Expectations of Our Team Members."
- Keep a Positive Attitude. "Don't whine, don't complain, don't make excuses." No Sniveling. (Enthusiasm)
- We act with Love and Balance. (Self-Control)
- No Blame Games – "A person can make mistakes, but they are not a failure until they blame others." My fault bad pass! (Cooperation)
- On our team we know: "If everyone thinks alike nobody is thinking." "We must be able to disagree agreeably." "What is right is more important than who is right." "It is amazing how much can be accomplished if no one is concerned with who gets the credit." (Team Spirit)"
- No Gossip: "If you have something to say to somebody or about somebody think if will help them or hurt them. If it will help them, say it. If will hurt them, don't." (Team Spirit)
- "Discipline yourself and others won't have to." (Self-Control)
- "If you don't have time to do it right, when will you have time to do it over again." (Skill)
- "Make your best a little better each day." "The best way to improve the team is to improve myself." (Alertness and Competitive Greatness)
- "If you don't like something only communicate it to a person who can fix it." If you don't like your playing time talk to the coach, don't complain to your teammate. If you don't like your paycheck talk to your boss, don't complain to a co-worker. Truth be told teammates don't want to hear complaints, they are just too polite to say so. (Team Spirit)
- There are No Problems only Opportunities. Whatever happens: Keep a Positive Attitude Get in the Solutions Department and find the Advantage in the Disadvantage. (Enthusiasm)
What are the "Agreed Upon Expectations of Your Team Members"?
Yours in Coaching,
COACH'S FAVORITE POETRY AND PROSE
The Man Who Couldn’t Save
He spent what he made, or he gave it away,
Tried to save money, and would for a day,
Started a bank-account time an' again,
Got a hundred or so for a nest egg, an' then
Some fellow that needed it more than he did,
Who was down on his luck, with a sick wife or kid,
Came along an' he wasted no time till he went
An' drew out the coin that for saving was meant.
They say he died poor, and I guess that is so:
To pile up a fortune he hadn't a show;
He worked all the time and good money he made,
Was known as an excellent man at his trade.
But he saw too much, heard too much, felt too much here
To save anything by the end of the year,
An' the shabbiest wreck the Lord ever let live
Could get money from him if he had it to give.
I've seen him slip dimes to the bums on the street
Who told him they hungered for something to eat,
An' though I remarked they were going for drink
He'd say: 'Mebbe so. But I'd just hate to think
That fellow was hungry an' I'd passed him by;
I'd rather be fooled twenty times by a lie
Than wonder if one of 'em I wouldn't feed
Had told me the truth an' was really in need.'
Never stinted his family out of a thing:
They had everything that his money could bring;
Said he'd rather be broke and just know they were glad,
Than rich, with them pining an' wishing they had
Some of the pleasures his money would buy;
Said he never could look a bank book in the eye
If he knew it had grown on the pleasures and joys
That he'd robbed from his wife and his girls and his boys.
Queer sort of notion he had, I confess,
Yet many a rich man on earth is mourned less.
All who had known him came back to his side
To honor his name on the day that he died.
Didn't leave much in the bank, it is true,
But did leave a fortune in people who knew
The big heart of him, an' I'm willing to swear
That to-day he is one of the richest up there.
Edgar Albert Guest (1881-1959)