Book Review: The 8 Qualities of a Drama Free Team: Do More, Stress Less, Zero Drama

In 2015, Mark Zuckerberg set a goal of reading a new book every other week. I’m an over-achiever, but not that much of an over-achiever, so I’ve set a goal to read a new one a month, and so far, out of 2017, I’ve met the goal twice (It’s almost August)…

I was listening to a podcast where they were interviewing Dennis McIntee, the author of  The 8 Qualities of a Drama Free Team: Do More, Stress Less, Zero Drama and what he talked about really intrigued me.  I’ve been on a journey lately of becoming a better leader and since this book was on my Kindle Unlimited plan (free!) and had a high rating, I grabbed it to read.

I’ll be honest, I thought the title was cheesey.  Something that you would see on an infomercial, so I didn’t have high expectations for what I would find inside.  Imagine my surprise when I found that I couldn’t stop reading it, highlight passages I wanted to remember or that I would finish it in a weekend.

I highlighted a lot of portions in the book, however, my favorite is this…

If you focus on the problems it won’t take long for anger to rise. Once that occurs, you’ve lost your personal power. When you’re angry, you’re not creative or constructive. You can’t help your team when you’re mad at them. If you are, change your focus.

I felt the author did a phenomenal job breaking down the different areas that you face on a regular basis as a leader, providing scenarios that you could connect to and clear instructions on how to make it change. He talks about trust and ownership as well as the chapter that I felt was most important to me:  Stop Asking Why.  We ask why a lot.  Why did you do this?  Why did you think that way?  Why didn’t you do it this way.  The problem with this that in most cases, we actually don’t care why, we want the behavior to stop happening and for the problem to be fixed.  When we ask Why to our team members, it can lead to mistrust and lead to time wasted. The why question causes a team member to be defensive and to defend why you did what you did. Stop asking why and start asking “What are you going to do with this problem you have?”.  Just that one question changes the entire dynamics of the conversation.

I will most likely re-read this book again in the near future, and may continue to keep re-reading it to build the habit of thinking about the tips that he provides.  He also has a website with some great tips and downloads. I downloaded the Drama Free Coaching Question and carry it in my bag every single day as a reminder of the right way to ask the questions instead of asking Why.

Have you read The 8 Qualities of a Drama Free Team: Do More, Stress Less, Zero Drama?  What was your impression?  What are you reading right now?  Share your recommendations in the comments!