Why Understanding Beliefs Build Stronger Teams


Today, our discussion will help you understand why you did the sentence completions and how the answers to the different sentences impact your beliefs. This part of the blog helps you as a leader better understand how to use these tools with your team members and clients. It’s great to know your own beliefs, but it’s just as critical for you to understand how to use the tools in working with your team.

Before you hire your next star salesperson, it might be helpful to see how they see the world. Over 80% of executives feel they’ve hired the wrong person for a critical role in their organization at some point in their career. If you know how people you hire see the world, you will be better prepared to help them succeed in their role. When I worked with the military, there was a saying we used during a promotion process: it’s better to dodge a bullet than to take one. Knowing what to expect from fellow team members multiplies your success in the field. This is not a bad thing to consider when you decide who to hire and when to promote team members. So, having a tool to bring out the beliefs in individuals on your team is a powerful strategy.

The I am sentence completion is the most powerful of the three because it’s quick and taps into our basic beliefs about ourselves. However, yourself image is formed at a very early age and is many times shaped by other people around you. If you were brought up in a positive environment, you are more likely to possess stronger I am statements and can define yourself quickly and more easily than the other statements you completed. Look at what you said about yourself and ask yourself, “Is this based on my actual experience or someone else’s?” You might also want to ask yourself if these beliefs are ever challenged in the real world.

Let’s take a look at how you completed the I succeed sentence. What if you answered I succeed because I work harder than anyone else. What does it say about how you see the world? This type of belief is very powerful. There certainly is no reason to challenge such a true belief. Why don’t we explore this belief for a moment? Do you really believe it? Have you experienced success because of it? Where did it come from? It sounds correct, but let’s did a little deeper into it. Has this belief ever limited your ability to achieve a goal? Do you allow it to shape how you live your life? What bigger ideas does this belief challenge? For example, is wealth today created by only hard work? Is Bill Gates really working a million times harder than you? Can this belief keep you from increasing your effectiveness? Does it serve your greater purpose if you believe it’s true? Many people believe that if you work hard you succeed because life is always fair. Sometimes, it’s not. So when you look at this sentence completion, be aware that many of these beliefs are cultural or hand me down beliefs. They may have worked in the past but the world is constantly evolving. The values you inherited sometimes limit your success. Are you willing to change your beliefs if they turn out to be limiting you?

The final sentence completion is I respect others when they …for example, speak their minds. This completion tells you how you would like to be treated. The challenge to these beliefs is they can limit your opportunities. If you have the belief that you only work with people who have similar beliefs you miss many growth opportunities. We tend to grow more when we are exposed to people with different beliefs because they make us stretch. We do not have a limit on the number of beliefs we can have. We can adopt new beliefs, alter them, or get rid of our own if they no longer serve our greater purpose. Once you begin exploring your beliefs, you will be able to better understand yourself and the world we live in. If your beliefs are limiting, so is your life. To be become better at dealing with change you must improve the way you understand yourself and others. Understanding beliefs can take your life to a new level of excellence. If you have any questions about exploring your beliefs please drop me a line and I can share additional information that can help take your life to the next level.

About the Author

Tripp Braden partners with financial and advisory services clients to create an anticipatory strategy and mindset. By leveraging people and technology he breaks down barriers to combine planning and innovation in a way that increases profits and accelerates sales results.
He’s a growth strategist and internationally recognized Sage Global Business Expert and IBM Futurist who turns strategy into implementable business development activities for increasing market share, revenue, and profits. He has proven success seeing the big picture and creating new market opportunities.
Tripp can be contacted at tbraden@marketleadership.net or send him an invite on LinkedIn. You can find Tripp’s other blog at Market Leadership Journal.

Tripp Braden – who has written posts on Empowering Serving Advisors.


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