Best people put together don’t produce the Best; proper Blend does!

Look at Manchester United, Barcelona or Real Madrid soccer clubs. Their teams give great performance, which has catapulted these clubs in top 10 slots in the world. However, during World Cup Football or other international matches, when U.K. or Spain builds a national team drawing the best players from various clubs, statistics show that such team does not put as great a show as what club teams do!

That is precisely true for a company or country! The combination of Bests culminates into Bad! Yet, we keep chasing and collecting the Best!!

Look at the confusion, most companies are in. Chasing Best can only be costly, complicated and consumes time and efforts, which are not commensurate with the returns. Yet, companies don’t dare to follow a right strategy.

Why combination of best talents bungles

  1. Poor definition
    On paper, organization or institutions put impressive definitions of what construe the best; but in practice, these are poorly understood and followed. The result is below on how best is (mis)understood:
    By Companies                            By Countries or Communities
    Ability to trigger imagination        Ability to trigger emotions
    Outspoken                                  Rhetoric
    Dynamic and dashing                Aggressive and arrogant
    Ability to give big talks                 Ability to give big promises
    Communicates well                   Criticizes well
    Flamboyant                                 Fierce
    This is precisely the practical life all over the world and no one is too concerned about its pitfalls!
    So, when individuals graduate through above qualities and qualify as best, they become individualistic, self-seekers and self-servers!
  2. Best is not a team player!
    One, who is identified as best, has lot of pre-conceived notions and own agenda. That prevents him/her to be good team player.
  3. Identical characters can’t pull together!
    Like identical polarities or electric charges, they would only pull apart.
  4. Too many top performers together only create chaos!
    If time clocks were to still have 1 second as its least count, then in a 100 meter race, several runners would be registered as touching finishing line at the same time and there would be a chaos in identifying who is the actual winner.
    Likewise, several top performers in a team would individually race to take credit to be winner by creating chaos at the cost of cohesiveness, killing dissent rather than encouraging and managing it and listen to own voice, instead of others!
  5. The bests can compete; but can’t complement!
    This is the biggest bane from the presence of too many bests in the team! The best by above definition does not know to compromise or complement; so team has eminent risk of losing motivation to monotony and drive to despondency.
    Non-compromising and non-complementing features of the bests break couples or partners, though individually they may be highly successful, strong personalities and well accomplished in their respective areas of activities!

Why a blend blooms!

We are not alone; therefore, to blend with others is a necessity of our life!

Here is one of the key secrets of science behind our life:

Our life is borne out of two opposites! Take any pair of parameters – one does not exist without another, like positive and negative, north and south poles, good and bad, light and dark, pleasure and pain!

Our conventional understanding is these are contradictory in nature; but in true sense, these are complimentary! Otherwise, why positive would be attracted to negative and if that was not to happen, no mass or matter would have formed in our universe and we would have not come to existence! Hence –

  1. Blending creates the synergy.
  2. It promotes unison and cohesion.
  3. It teaches team spirit and acceptance of dissent.
  4. It blunts our ego and edges, which are sharp!
  5. It inspires compromise and conflict management!

So, to talk about having the bests in class is like being in fool’s paradise! Companies and institutions must focus on creating a right blend of achiever and average, performers and under performers, male and female, young and old, juniors and seniors! Such a blend would be most effective in terms of efficiency, energy and cost!

Need to redefine the Best!

Most in the world have been confusing best by clamor and not by content!

Best is never the best, unless it imbibes Acceptance, Mutual respect and being Complementary or Congenial!

It is just above 3 elements (A-M-C) and the Best would start to Blend, even with worst, yet produce the best results!!

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18 Comments
  • Rudra
    Jul 29,2013 at 6:24 pm

    Interesting post!! I think this could be a reason why many times a movie with a huge star-cast doesn’t do well, only because the Director didn’t manage them well! 🙂

    But I doubt if this is the case always, or is this?

    Your 5 points regarding why combination of best talents bungles – does this essentially be true in all the cases? A mother wouldn’t want to make all her kids BEST then… 😉 just kidding… but then of-course, she will have to blend the kids properly!!

    Good read!!

    • Jul 30,2013 at 2:32 pm

      I appreciate your views and ideas!

      I have never seen that a mix of Bests would not create a mess!! A mother wanting to make her kids best is only her wish. How many have been able to do that? I have witnessed mothers finally stating all 5 fingers can’t be the same!

  • Sunil Khanna
    Jul 29,2013 at 1:33 pm

    Murli Sahab

    Very well written article. You are absolutely right. Best people do not make the most successful team. We need a blend of profiles of leaders and implementers and followers and complimantry skilld to make a business successful.

    • Jul 29,2013 at 10:27 pm

      I can’t thank you enough for your valuable views and feedback! You have very appropriately orchestrated and emphasized the need for a blend of profiles and skills!!

  • Roshan Pais
    Jul 29,2013 at 12:13 pm

    Dear Sir,

    I agree to most of your article and I do consciously try to achieve the blend that you describe. But your comments on the following will help me.

    Its indeed useless to have exactly the same kind of talent and goals for all team members even if the ultimate objective is the same e.g. we the goalkeeper is meant to save goals, not score them. It’s not so clear when you look at a sales team that apparently should comprise of individuals possessing the same set of skills and apparently the same objectives. Here its critical that the organization maintains a proper structure and targets so that there are good growth paths and organizationally aligned achievement objectives for individuals and teams. It’s when these become muddled that problems creep up on several fronts.

    If i was to ever have an operation performed on me, I would want every single individual in the hospital to the be the best of the best of the best: i don’t want an under-performing anesthetist or surgeon or nurse or lab technician. By the same yardstick, I would prefer to work in a team of individuals who are the best at what they do because of either inherent talent or through sheer hard work. It’s not easy to declare whether the talented ones are better to work with or the hard-working ones. But once people realize that individual and collective results can improve by working together and catapulting each-other forward, these individuals produce extraordinary results as a team compared to other teams that will just enjoy their time together and pat each-other on the back for the hard work irrespective of the results.

    • Jul 30,2013 at 12:56 pm

      I highly appreciate your views and comments!

      Your point on sales team, if individuals work independently, each one can be best by his/her talent. But, if they need to work as a team, then it is necessary to jive or blend well to bring out the best results. I have seen sales teams messing up before customers, even though they were best individuals. It is not question of targets or objectives of individuals alone; people can always explain failures (albeit wrongly). Psychologically and practically, all bests can’t create synergy together!

      In medical surgery theater, is not just a wish that every individual involved to conduct surgery be the best apparently out of fear. Does such wish by itself guarantee that things can’t still go wrong? What one wants is the best result or successful surgery. Here again, what works is a well blended team, which can respond to patient needs promptly and correctly! Have you ever come across that team of extra-ordinaries could produce extra-ordinary results? Idea of blended team is to produce that!

      Have I sufficiently addressed points to your satisfaction?

      • Roshan Pais
        Jul 30,2013 at 4:47 pm

        This is quite interesting, so please allow me to persist!

        We have two hands, but one is on the left and the other on the right.

        If we get down to it, we all have the same four basic proteins in our DNA, yet each one of us is unique in his /her own way. When DNA chains within cells see redundancy – as in the case of inbreeding populations – we see deformities in bodies and associated problems.

        Similarly, if two individuals have to do exactly the same job in a team, then whether they are the best at what they do or the worst, there will always be problems.

        Its in nature to eliminate redundancies. That is the basic rule of the blend also – everyone contributes in his /her own unique way.

        A team is only required when the task is too big for an individual. The task and responsibility of building the team should remain with the designated leader i.e. his /her boss should not interfere and create redundancies of function and action. The leader identifies parts of the task that he /she can perform and those that need to be performed by others. These tasks should be separate, i.e. no redundancies in action( or targets). If there are 5 tasks, select 5 individuals who are the best at each of those specific tasks. And then, let them do what they are made responsible to do.

        I would agree that if 5 Sales Managers went in to pick up the same order, God Himself would leave the building. But if the VP Sales, Area Sales Manager and Sales Executive (each of them, the best at what they do) went in to pick up the order with each of them contributing within their function and authority levels, I imagine that they would walk out with the order.

        Perhaps by redefining the “Blend” as – a full image of all the pieces of the puzzle – we could make allowances for each of the pieces to be the “Best”, so that we can also achieve the “Best Blend”?

        • Jul 31,2013 at 3:19 pm

          I admire your sustained interest and additional thoughts! They are giving me an opportunity to go deeper.

          So, I assume that you agree to possibility of “more than one best together for same function” not giving best results is high. Now, let us look at a team of bests but with graded functions or responsibilities. Consider the sales team of 5 per your example. In practical life, 5 individual bests would have to blend (adjust or compromise) together to make the team work and win the customer order. What would happen, if only the leader was to be best and the rest 4 were not; but make an effective combination. To my experience, they would still win the order! If that be so, what is the necessity of having the said balance 4 to be the best candidates; it is not economical and is time/energy consuming. Point, which I am making is that whether you take a team of best 5 or 1 best and balance 4 such as to make a good team, the result would be no different!! On the other hand, the former alternative of all bests run the risk of failure or chaos,if they don’t jive well which is more prevalent if real life.

          To conclude, Best Blend most probably would not come out of the individual bests.

          • Roshan Pais
            Jul 31,2013 at 6:04 pm

            Dear Sir,

            Thank you for your comments.

            From your comments above – What would happen, if only the leader was to be best and the rest 4 were not; but make an effective combination. To my experience, they would still win the order! If that be so, what is the necessity of having the said balance 4 to be the best candidates – it seems to me that a] a lot depends on the leader and b] the rest of the team are required to primarily perform assigned tasks and be tightly managed.

            If this arrangement meets the requirements of the leader’s goal, which I have to assume is aligned upwards in the organization, then there is nothing more to ask for as long as the status quo is maintained within and outside the organization.

            Once the demand on performance increases, what would the Leader’s strategy be to cope? Larger Blend or Better Blend?

          • Aug 1,2013 at 11:18 pm

            I can’t thank you enough for your sustained interest!

            Yes, a leader matters most in a team. Regardless of demand on performance or stakes, efforts should always be for effective (or best possible) blend!!

  • Arun Sadhashivan
    Jul 27,2013 at 6:25 pm

    Dear Mr. Lohia,

    As usual, it’s a very interesting idea. Sometimes teams just need to be “good enough” – where “good enough” is just the specific skills – arranged in a proper way – so that the work gets done to a customer’s satisfaction.


    Arun

    • Jul 27,2013 at 9:56 pm

      Many thanks for your feedback! What you have stated is true and works well!!

      • Jul 27,2013 at 10:17 pm

        In the same theme of “good enough”, I remember you once saying that if you want to do good quality work, you should give the customer just what they asked for, no more and no less :-). Understanding why you should not give more took a bit longer.

        • Jul 28,2013 at 12:47 pm

          Thanks a lot! Your observations and memory are incredibly sharp!!

  • Murli Lohia
    Jul 26,2013 at 12:55 pm

    Transferred from LinkedIn

    On 07/25/13 9:47 PM, Sachin Rasane wrote:
    ——————–
    Gud one Sir!!!

    • Jul 26,2013 at 12:57 pm

      Thanks a lot!

  • Murli Lohia
    Jul 26,2013 at 12:54 pm

    Transferred from LinkedIn

    On 07/25/13 7:01 PM, Bas Mutsaers wrote:
    ——————–
    This is one of the better ones of the month !

    • Jul 26,2013 at 12:57 pm

      Many thanks for your remark!

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