Had the privilege to hear Jennifer Jones, winning skip of our women's gold medal curling team, speak yesterday. The event was the WXN (Women's Executive Network www.wxnetwork.com) breakfast meeting. Jennifer is energetic, enthusiastic and very grounded considering her commitments as a lawyer, the curling training, international travel schedule, speaking and last but not least mom to young daughter Isabella. (Phew I was feeling tired just listening!!)
Her talk focused on a number of aspects of being part of a team. Much was familiar territory. There was something though that caught my ear. There was a lot of buzz a few years back when she made a decision to let go one of the team members in favour of someone young, lots of potential but essentially untried. She spoke about making this criticized change for their future.
Then she said "Bring in someone new (to the team) and you create a whole new team. Don't ask someone to fit into the 'old' mold team. Let someone bring who they are to the dynamic."
I thought this was unique and not how we usually receive new team members. When this new member joined, the team saw themselves as a brand new team. Deliberately took time to discover who they were now in this new dynamic and drew upon the resultant cross skills and capabilities to go onto win gold in Sochi - the only women's team to do so undefeated.
She's onto something! What if we didn't look to see how a new member on a team 'fits in'. Rather look at how they make a team new. Brilliant!