Avoiding the Triangulation Trap

Focused Team Communication: Avoiding the Triangulation Trap

Is your team in sync?

How would you rate your team’s communication?

Triangulation impairs progress, decreases morale and creates division.
Groups become divided. Trust erodes, production suffers, conflict increases, and creativity may be blunted as communication dynamics worsen.

Triangulation goes something like this:

Team Member 1 (TM1) and 2 have a conflict.

• TM1 goes to TM3 to talk about TM2.
• TM2 isn’t in the loop and consequently, isn’t aware of the TM1 to TM3 interaction.
• When TM2 gets wind of this, he/she feels blindsided, resentful and mistrustful.
• Communication Challenge is Magnified!

Yet, there are simple steps team leaders can take to immediately impact their team’s communication challenges!

Today’s key to success:

1) Create awareness of triangulation within your team.
2) Generate the following agreement with your team:

a) Step 1: I agree to resolve issues directly with source of the challenge.

b) Step 2: I agree I will not talk in a negative fashion about my colleague behind their back.

c) Step 3: If I’m unable to resolve the conflict with the individual, I will seek a neutral mentor or 3rd party to coach me through the conflict or ask for mediation.

d) Step 4: For steps 1 – 3, I will be accountable and actionable throughout the process.

Most of us have experienced team synchronicity. Most of us have experienced triangulation. By following a few simple steps, your team will make giant leaps!


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