The Real Barriers To Team Success

Teams, as we know, have the potential to contribute significantly to organisational performance. On the other hand they often fail to deliver to optimal performance levels.

While there may be whole host of barriers to success, I have found that some of the real barriers include the following:

  • A Lack Of Listening

    So often people say that the problem is a lack of communication. Yes, communication matters but what I have found is the real barrier is the inability to listen to each other. When we stop listening, we close our mind to insights and ideas that could make a big difference.

  • The Know It All

    You might have met this person: the individual who has the answer to every possible challenge that the team could have or face. The trouble is, they tend to steam roll through their ideas and end up alienating people.

  • Pessimism

    Achieving anything of significance is tough and let’s not pretend otherwise. At the same time, if you are overly pessimistic you never do anything because you worry as to if you are doing the right thing.

  • Promising A Lot, Delivering Little

    The people who used to frustrate me were the people who promised to do a lot of things but just let the team down time and time again. If you are the leader, you need to hold these individuals to account.

  • A Lack Of Trust

    Trust takes time to build and can be destroyed in minutes. Delivering what you say and going out of your way to help others builds and maintains trust.

I would love to hear your experiences of what gets in the way of team success and, if you have a moment, I invite you to leave a comment.

Duncan Brodie of Goals and Achievements helps accountants and health professionals to become highly effective leaders and managers. He invites you to take advantage of his free audio e-course Leadership Success at

About the Author Duncan Brodie

Since 2006 I’ve worked with in excess of 8,000 accountants and professionals in workshops, seminars and one to one helping them land their next jobs and become better leaders, presenters and business partners. Before that I spent 25 years in accountancy climbing the career ladder from Payments Clerk to FD. I’m a CIMA Fellow, Certified Professional Coach and Team Coach Facilitator.

Leave a Comment:

Marc Beune says 4 March 2011

Important barrier: not sharing the revenues (or losses) in an accepted way. Asking continuous inprovement and team effort without a clear upfront added value sharing system, can lead very quickly to demotivation as soon as real improvements are made. Being transparant from the start and showing costs, investments and benefits is crucial for the legitimacy of the leadership.

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