Rampaging dysfunction: Goodbye trust, hello conflict.


Dysfunction is everywhere, from the political arena to the sporting fields, it’s running wild. But why? Well I believe there has been a fundamental loss of trust within the framework of these organisations. Members, players and supporters have lost faith in those who represent them in one arena or another.


The disunity, lack of transparency and the erosion of an authentic leadership base has been born from the desire of the egotistical few to get their own way, to win at all costs, to be about the ‘I’ rather than the ‘we’. Sound familiar? So much conflict, so much wasted energy. For what? Look at the scoreboard. Has it changed?


Leaders have not been actively leading or have been disempowered and lost their ability to lead. In a state of dysfunction, the blame game comes into play. Ownership and accountability have left the building, and leadership has walked out right behind it. Individuals resign or are put in a position where there is no alternative but to walk away. The followers, the team, the players are left to run their own race in the hope that someone will suddenly emerge from the ashes and rise to lead the way. But where to?


I must ask, do our organisations, political parties and sporting teams need to push themselves to the brink before creating a space for change? Our environment is not stagnant, why are those in these arenas? It’s time to get back to basics. Focus on your people, your supporters, your customers. Stop with the internal bickering and get focussed on what’s happening outside of your organisation. Get your management team together and develop a strategy. Engage. Communicate. Share information. Be transparent. No BS. Focus on truth. Rebuild relationships. Be authentic. Be honest. Show integrity. Adapt. Dig deep. Get comfortable with being uncomfortable. Collaborate.


As a business coach in the executive space, the dysfunction is real. The Epiphany Group works with organisations, large and small, who have misaligned teams and we provide a means through which the lack of alignment and dysfunction can be recalibrated. This is executed via our Group Coaching program. What our coaches discover is that fundamentally either the structure of the organisation is not working, the processes within the organisation or business unit are broken, not being followed or maybe don’t even exist, or the wrong people are in the arena. Organisational culture is at rock bottom and so are the results.


So, we flip it on its head. We challenge what is. We look at what needs to be. We develop a plan. We hold all the players accountable. We work on their mindset and their skillset. We provide positive energy. We engage. We build trust. We are transparent. We confront the difficult issues. We force clarity and commitment. We provide them with the ‘how’ to get their business where they want it to be. Sometimes there are casualties along the way, that’s business but in most cases the results are transformational and positive. We all need to be in an environment where we are supported and encouraged, to be led and to be allowed to lead.


In a time when we need leaders to stand up and deliver, there is so much opportunity to rise. In the words of Justin Langer, the Australian Cricket Coach:


“You have to keep digging deep, roll up your sleeves, play with that Australian spirit”.

Leaders, it is time to dig deep. It is time to roll up your sleeves. It is time to play with a spirit to create engagement, inspiration and success.


Shayne Miller is the General Manager and a Business Coach at The Epiphany Group.

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