Key strategies to foster buy-in and clarity in decision-making include creating a culture of honest conflict where people feel heard and their opinions are considered. This helps them buy-in to the group decision even if they initially disagreed. Clear decisions should be made, even in situations of high ambiguity. It's also crucial for executive teams to be completely aligned, as even small gaps in alignment can lead to significant misunderstandings among employees.

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Small gaps between executives in a team can lead to significant issues. These gaps can grow into larger divisions when they reach employees, causing confusion, misalignment, and potential conflict. It can also lead to a lack of clarity in decision-making and a decrease in commitment among team members. Ultimately, these gaps can undermine the effectiveness of the team and the organization as a whole.

Executive teams can ensure alignment on even the smallest details by fostering a culture of honest conflict and clear decision-making. This involves creating an environment where everyone feels heard and their opinions are considered, even if they don't agree with the final decision. This helps to foster buy-in and commitment. It's also important for the team to make clear decisions, even in situations of high ambiguity. Any small gaps in alignment at the executive level can become much larger issues when they reach employees, so complete alignment is crucial.

Achieving consensus is not the primary goal of conflict within a team because the main aim is to foster commitment through buy-in and clarity in decision-making. Conflict allows for open and honest discussions where everyone's opinions are heard and considered. This process helps team members feel valued and more likely to support the group's decision, even if they initially disagreed. The goal is to make clear decisions, even in situations of high ambiguity, and ensure alignment among all team members, down to the smallest details.

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The Five Dysfunctions of a Team

Patrick Lencioni, who has coached hundreds of CEOs and Fortune 500 companies’ crews, presents a powe...

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