Can Trust with Greater Communication Drive Greater Results?

In my last published article, How Can You Win by Sharing Challenges and Problems? I introduced our Collaborate Leadership, Four Meeting Model which gives leaders an alternative approach to the development of teams into collaborative and innovative units. This team approach gives organizations the advantage by incorporating individual leadership development as the connection, and alignment, of the team progresses.

I believe that the Collaborative Leadership Four Meeting model is the best for creating greater cross functional goal achievement with an organization, and more effective project management among leaders and their teams. Effective communication is an essential part of this collaboration, and meetings that communicate goals and initiatives must be deliberately structured to encourage input and maximize engagement.

Creating engagement and buy-in – perhaps the most important part of our meeting model is the Introductory Meeting. This is where team leaders set the new tone and expectations for meetings going forward.

Here are the steps for your first Introductory Meeting:

  • Discuss the concept of using meetings to move into greater connection, accountability and solutions. Emphasize that practice shows that taking time to develop better communication, partnership and sharing of possible solutions will move strategic plans and goals forward with greater speed and empowerment for all involved.
  •  Ask them to use the time between this introductory meeting and the first of the Four Meetings to consider what is going well and what is presenting a challenge to them.
  •  This is a time to introduce the idea of presenting a report that has a focus on a win, as well as a current challenge, as a way of effectively utilizing the meeting and the team. This will replace the usual business report that is often read without comment. It sometimes takes some time to get people comfortable with the vulnerability of talking about challenges
  •  This is an opportunity for the leader to demonstrate by having an example of what’s going well (a Win), and a challenge that is being presented; and what a next step might be. You can let them know that no one will question during the presentation. You can use ½ hour to have everyone give the same communication. There is no right or wrong way to do this. The important element is the communication and the willingness to do something different to enhance results.

For one global organization I work with, this model moved regional vice presidents and directors to greater communication and accountability, which resulted in creative solutions coming from everyone. The trust in the meeting and communication process, created greater trust with each other and in working together. Leaders now talk to each other more regularly. In addition, engagement in the strategic plan and implementation increased as the members of the team communicated more frequently with each other to create planning, and to share ways to move forward more effectively.

One VP told me that he used the model to lead his own group, and to assist his leadership team to manage their work teams to meet the goals that were set by the business. Trust to be authentic and to share the truth became easier and productive.

This change in focus can create some discomfort as people move out of the comfort zone of protection and presenting a good picture. A leader must assure team members that challenges are part of growth which allows us to step into new territory with a sense of support rather than being judged and evaluated personally.


  • Make Collaborative Leadership and team alignment a priority and communicate that to your team
  •  Set up a team meeting to discuss and to introduce the process
  •  Know that the team alignment process with a consultant and with the team during regular interaction will take time which will be made up by creating more efficiency and implementation with a new mindset
  •  Give yourself as the leader the coaching and reflection time to develop new goals based on the fact that 21st century business demands collaboration
  •  Be open to new ways of thinking and doing and to your own leadership expansion
  •  Know that empowerment of the members of your team will create more time for strategic thinking and interaction with other business leaders

Stay tuned for more on the Four Meeting Model; we’ll be taking a closer look at the elements of the First Meeting next time.

Would you like to see the Four Meeting Model in its entirety? Request a copy here: Send me a copy of the Collaborative Leadership Four Meeting Model.

Do you have a leadership question, challenge, or success you would like to share, please be sure to leave a comment. I would enjoy hearing from you! – Patricia