Greatness begins with awareness.

How to Stop Losing Talent Because of Team Conflicts

Having great talent on your team doesn’t do much unless you know how to make the most of everyone’s innate abilities and understand the dynamics they create when working together. If the team members don’t have a sense of their collective synergies (or lack thereof), they will work against each other, causing team conflicts and misunderstandings that can lead to talent quitting.

This is the situation Amy was in when she approached me. Her team members weren’t getting along. She loved them all, and they were all bringing something wonderful to the table. However, she knew there was a real risk that she might lose some of them if she couldn’t resolve the team issues they were having.

Watch the video or read on to discover how I combined coaching with the Kolbe Assessment to prevent her from losing talent due to team disagreements.


Amy’s team took the Kolbe A™ and B™ Indexes as part of the coaching engagement.

  • Kolbe A™ Index revealed how every person operates at work, the differences and similarities in their approaches, and the patterns that were causing team conflicts.
  • Kolbe B™ Index revealed how each person viewed the functional demands of their position, and if it was different from their A Index scores, it told us they were experiencing a kind of mental exhaustion since their job expectations did not match their innate talent.

We did a series of team coaching sessions so everyone could learn the concepts behind the assessment and understand each other’s scores and what they meant in regard to the team’s dynamics and the challenges they were encountering. Everyone had a chance to share how their innate patterns helped them be successful and what type of help they needed from others on the team.

This graphic (from the Kolbe Team report) shows the team’s distribution of talent across Kolbe’s four Action Modes®: Fact Finder, Follow Thru, Quick Start, and Implementor.

The report told us this team had difficulty working together because they are very similar. They tend to get stuck in the weeds, arguing about process and specifics, very slow to get moving.

Their business and clients did not allow them to be slow – so the pressure and stress were tremendous for everyone. Given these patterns, we talked about how the team could be effective together.



We also did individual coaching sessions with the members who were having the greatest amount of conflict. We looked at why and how they were triggering each other and what they could do to smoothen their differences and collaborate more effectively.


Ten months after the coaching started, Amy is happy to report everyone is still there and she no longer feels the constant threat of somebody walking out the door.

Kolbe gave the team a greater understanding of each other’s contribution, and with it came appreciation and compassion. The coaching through Kolbe also gave them a common language to discuss their challenges and a path to follow when collaboration hits a snag. They can go back to their scores to remember how they function differently and what they need from each other to perform at their best.

They all come into the work with the best intentions, and Kolbe gives them a framework to talk about how they are going to accomplish the team’s goals using each other’s strengths instead of getting upset and resentful.

One particular moment of tension came last December when two team members were coming at the work in very different ways, and tempers were rising because of it. Going back to what she had learned through the process, Amy helped them take a step back and see the merit of each other’s approach, with the understanding that both were following their own natural way of taking action.

The focus of the discussion shifted to what steps they all could take to get to the finish line, allowing everyone to leverage their innate abilities and contribute at their best without getting in each other’s way or wasting time and energy arguing.


Is your team experiencing recurring collaboration issues?

Are you afraid of losing valuable employees because of team conflicts?

Through a Kolbe Assessment and team coaching, I can help you find a path to more effective collaboration. Let’s talk!

Kolbe A™ Index and Action Modes® are the trademarks of Kathy Kolbe and Kolbe Corp. All rights reserved. The description in this blog is my interpretation of the Kolbe System™. Here is an overview to gain an understanding of Kolbe’s approach and wisdom. 


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