Married to the Mob

themobI am lucky to live by the ocean.  Yesterday, I had the opportunity to spend two hours at the beach, by myself—no husband or children in tow.  I packed up a slew of unread magazines, my iPod, and sunscreen — I was ready for a blissful afternoon.  With the warm sunshine at my face, a gentle breeze in my hair and the ocean at my toes, I was in heaven.

As I plowed through my stack of magazines, I came across an article about marriage.  The gist of the article was this – when it comes to what makes a happy marriage, go with the 75-percent rule:  People believe that a good marriage is defined as being happy at least 75 percent of the time, according to a poll of 1,500 adults.  According to Scott Haltzman, M.D., author of The Secrets of Happy Families, rather than dwelling on what’s wrong or feeling a sense of failure that things aren’t perfect, assume there will always be highs and lows throughout the duration of the relationship.

 Whether you are part of a couple or married to the mob, the same philosophy applies.  Before you seek counseling for your project team, remember that 25 percent of not-so-good-times are normal team dynamics.   Don’t view tough times as an indication your team is flawed; don’t put pressure on yourself to solve something that’s not a problem; don’t blame your teammates for not making you happy.  Instead, follow these four steps to lead your team to steady longevity:

  1. Identify 1-2 improvement opportunities for your team
  2. Develop an improvement approach  that everyone can agree to
  3. Establish a timeline and measures for success
  4. Reward yourselves for improvements made

 Remember to have a life outside of your team; spending time with family, friends and hobbies fulfills you and keeps your relationship fresh when you rejoin your teammates.  Remember to take time for yourself so that during the happy 75percent of your time with your team, you have 100 percent of yourself to give.

 Lisa DiTullio, Principal, Lisa DiTullio & Associates, LLC

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