Archive for December, 2012

Getting The Most Out Of Both You and Your Team

December 18, 2012


FountainBlue’s December 14 When She Speaks, Women in Leadership Series event was on the topic of Getting The Most Out Of Both You and Your Team. Below are notes from the conversation.


We were fortunate to have a wide range of perspectives on our panel, and that our panelists shared their insights, suggestions and advice with poignant humor and candor. Their comments and suggestions ranged from leadership development to emotional and social development, and traversed a range of experiences from sports to software, from start-ups to corporate R&D, from newly-formed teams to teams with long history of relationships and processes. But their insights and suggestions had many things in common. And their overall input, suggestions and advice show what exceptional leaders they are.

Confidence and Self-Awareness are Key

  • Focus on personal development, knowing who you are, where you fit, how you are adding a value, how you are being perceived by others and what all that means for the success of the team.
  • Embrace your past experiences, successes and strengths and build upon them to create the next successes and opportunities and empower those around them to do the same.
  • Be flexible and focus on growing and learning, ever attempting to see how *you* can think and act differently, rather than how you can change others for their benefit.

Effective Strategists Who Can Execute

  • Look first at the high-level strategy of what the company wants, what each of the team members and groups want, and how you can together can get from here to there.
  • Then next focus on building relationships and communications, processes and milestones in order to get from point A to point B.
  • Be decisive in action, transparent in communication, fluid in revising milestones and goals as required, and ever-focused on moving the needle forward.
  • Be intuitive and decisive, focused on meeting the needs of the team, organization and individual, but taking quick action to ensure that the right people are fulfilling the right role for the organization.

It’s Always About the People

  • Be relationship-based and clearly communicate by aligning your words and actions.
  • Nurture your people, particularly talented people, and help them grow and figure out what’s next for them, regardless of whether it fits into the current game plan for the current team and company.


  • Be customer-focused, so important in this day and age, and focus on the problems of the customer rather than developing a technology or solution looking for a customer.
  • Work hard to understand the motivations of all the stakeholders, and help focus everyone toward a common goal that addresses the needs of the customer.
  • Be an exceptional problem-solvers, and engage and enlist a wide range of stakeholders to address specific problems of internal and external customers.
  • Be open minded (with a ‘people aren’t being difficult, just different’ attitude) and truly listen, always focusing on engaging and learning in order to get a better understanding of the wants and needs of others.

Exceptional Communicators

  • Be authentic and transparent in all communications, particularly when the conversations become difficult.
  • Attract a team that also wants to communicate transparently and collaborate toward a common goal. Build a track record of success, and you will keep attracting people who share your passion for delivering results and communicating transparently and authentically.
  • Whenever there is conflict regarding the strategic direction of a company or team, they focus on explaining the reasons behind a decision, invite feedback, and are transparent in their communication about the new direction. They might provide future alternatives, but they won’t sugar-coat what’s happening, and they communicate authentically with others, building relationships of trust.

In the end, authenticity and trust-based relationships are the key to managing dedicated, collaborative people successfully, and working strategically and communicating clearly on the measurable results achieved when we all work together.


Please join us in thanking our panelists for FountainBlue’s December 14 When She Speaks, Women in Leadership Series event, on the topic of Getting The Most Out Of Both You and Your Team:

Facilitator Lucie Newcomb, President and CEO, The NewComm Global Group, Inc.

Panelist Maryanne Flynn, Director, Operations Group, Cisco

Panelist Rosy Lee, Director, Life Technologies

Panelist Marie Tahir, VP, Design, Marketplaces, eBay

Panelist Luciana Vecchi, Business & Product Manager (International Development), Strategic Growth Markets, Adobe

Please also join us in thanking our gracious hosts at Life Technologies.