Greatness begins with awareness.

Effective Team Building Needs Talent Diversification

Diverse talent for team buildingA consulting firm hired me to do a team building workshop to help them figure out how they could work more effectively together.

The firm was overflowing with good clients and projects but didn’t understand why they struggled to work together.

The two team leaders were exhausted from trying to hold the team together while continuing to deliver solid work to their thriving client base.

The Kolbe System™ Sheds Light On Dysfunctional Team Dynamics

As I expected, using the Kolbe A™ Index as an assessment tool provided eye-opening insights on the team members’ innate working patterns and what was causing many of the challenges.

The results showed they were cloning each other in how they solved problems. The team had hired people with similar work characteristics because that’s what seemed to fit the needs of their consulting projects. However, this was hindering their team development, making it nearly impossible for the members to have synergies that would produce strong collaborative results.

Using Kolbe RightFit™ for Team Building

Since the firm needed to hire more consultants, they took the opportunity to follow a new team building strategy and create a better mix of talent. We used Kolbe RightFit™ during the hiring process to understand each candidate’s natural mode of action and predict how they would impact the overall synergy of the team.

This led them to hire a new consultant, Toby, whom they would not have considered in the past. Toby was very different from the existing team members, who were all deeply analytical and process-driven people.  Toby is analytical too but not as much as the others. Even more importantly, he is not process oriented; he is much more adaptable and flexible. Plus, Toby has a much greater sense of urgency and innovates more than anyone else on the team.

The Transformation

Once on board, Toby was teamed up with one of the most high-performing consultants and the work they delivered together was immediately much better than that of other teams, even with almost no direction from the project leaders.

The firm’s leaders were thrilled with the results. For the first time, they realized how having a team of diverse problem-solvers can positively impact productivity and performance. Now Toby is used as a key trouble shooter, his role is to move from project to project, when the consultants need a fresh perspective. He always brings his innovative solutions; improving and catapulting the results. It is a win for everyone and Toby gets to continue to be challenged and fresh, which keeps him engaged.


When team members are similar, they create inertia; working together is slow and frustrating, and output can be stale – no matter how talented the individuals are.

With an accuracy that is unlike any other assessment model, the Kolbe System™ is a great team building aid because it helps us understand existing team dynamics and how the team and the work should be re-designed for optimal performance.

Learn more about the Kolbe System™ or contact me to discuss how an assessment might help you.


Kolbe System™, Kolbe A™ Index and Kolbe RightFit™ are trademarks of Kathy Kolbe and Kolbe Corp. All rights reserved.


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