Florin Lungu - Is your team struggling like this?

Meet Mike.

Mike is a team leader at his organization. It is not always easy, but he loves it. He enjoys his work; he is committed to his role; and he is passionate about the organization’s mission. But his team is struggling, and he doesn’t know why.

Mike’s idea of a leader is strong, distant – he remains stoic in the face of hardship. He believes a leader should not let his people see him deal with difficulty. He does not want them to doubt him. 

However, that is not how John sees it.

John is a member of Mike’s team. The stone-faced demeanor that Mike sees as strong, John sees as guarded. John sees Mike keeping his distance and John is discouraged by the detachment.

But the leader sets the tone. The leader defines reality for their team.

So John does like he sees and stays guarded himself. He doesn’t see that Mike is dealing with issues, so he believes his leader “has it all together.” When he is confronted with problems or makes mistakes, he thinks he’s missing something. He doesn’t want to look foolish, so he keeps it all to himself.

His misconceptions go uncorrected; his missteps fly under the radar. He does not ask for help or feedback. He does not reach out to other members of the team. He wastes time trying to cover himself. He feels resentful of his role – the difficulty causes him self-doubt – and he dreads meeting with his colleagues.

In this dysfunctional environment, he does not learn or grow or develop. He flounders.

And John is just one member of the team. Mike’s whole team is guarded, discouraged, and floundering.

This is why his team is struggling. 

What has gone wrong here?

Leadership expert Dr. John C. Maxwell says,

“Everything rises and falls on leadership.”

At the end of the day, a leader is responsible for their team. The good and the bad alike travel down from the “top.”

If a leader keeps things close to the chest, the team keeps things close to the chest – and where there is no vulnerability, there is no trust. And where there is no trust, the team falls apart.

Mike, John, and the rest of their team may not be real – but they represent a very real, very common problem in today’s workplace. As a coach with Become Your Best Version, I have seen it time and again: a lack of trust is corrosive. Generally, I offer one of these solutions to repair the trust on the team…

1. Vulnerability exercises. Authenticity begins to build the bridge of trust. When a team sees each other and their leader as they are – as people, not titles – and when they see that no one “has it all together,” walls come down. They stop feeling so guarded and become more comfortable being authentic themselves – and seeking help.

My go-to authenticity exercise is the Leadership Game, which has transformative results.

2. Communication exercises. It is said that 90% of conflict is caused by miscommunication. That means that clearer communication can eliminate as much as 90% of conflict. I would say that’s a solution worth seeking!

I use Maxwell Communication Impact Reports to help leaders understand how they communicate so they can better connect with their teams.

3. Feedback exercises. While it is a leader’s job to revive trust among their team, their team’s feedback can play a vital role in the process – especially when the leader requests it. Opening a secure channel where they can share their thoughts encourages them to open up and shows them their input is valuable.

For this, I offer leaders the 360 Degree Leadership Assessment, which allows their team to give their thoughts on their leadership.

If Mike’s team sounds like your team, you may need a trust infusion. Start by making sure they are comfortable being honest with you. Or, if your team needs a bit more help, feel free to book a discovery call with me here, and I can bring any of these solutions to your organization.

That’s all for now,


Get My Free Guide: 5 Strategies for Retaining Top Talent

Voluntary turnover it’s an ALARMINGLY preventable problem.

To combat this, I have outlined five leadership strategies that will keep your top performers leaned in and performing.