Is there a tool or assessment that you would recommend for a team who is newly forming?

For a team that is newly forming, one helpful assessment tool mentioned by executive coach Ed Batista is the Values in Action Survey of Character Strengths, often referred to as the VIA, which was developed by Martin Seligman and Christopher Peterson. This assessment can help team members understand their individual strengths, which is a critical component of forming a strong team foundation.

In his article "Exploring a Potential Partnership," Batista emphasizes the importance of understanding individual strengths as a precursor to deciding where one belongs in a team or partnership. The VIA can inform team members of their "signature strengths," which can then be discussed among the team to explore how these strengths complement each other or might conflict.

Additionally, Batista suggests using a worksheet to help team members articulate their work style preferences, which can also be useful for a newly forming team. This exercise helps to identify what conditions allow each member to do their best work, and understanding these preferences can aid in creating a team environment that is conducive to everyone's productivity.

Moreover, it is essential for the team to have a clear understanding of their core values, as alignment in values is crucial for team cohesion and effectiveness. Batista provides an exercise for reaching actionable definitions of core values, which involves creating a list of value words, illustrating them with stories, and narrowing them down to a few core values. This process can help team members to identify and share their values, providing a foundation for how they will work together and what they collectively stand for.

In summary, Batista recommends several tools and exercises that can be valuable for a newly forming team, including the VIA for assessing individual strengths, a worksheet for understanding work style preferences, and an exercise for defining core values. These tools can assist in building a solid foundation for teamwork by highlighting individual and collective strengths, preferences, and values.