Intention is the most important component in a leadership team. What I mean by intention is that the thoughts and actions of the members of the management team are focused on what’s best for the company, not what’s best for their teams (the service department, for example), or themselves.

Often, the members of leadership teams believe their role is to represent their departments (such as call center or marketing). They believe their job is to fight for the recognition of their teams, or for company resources for their teams. With that mindset, it’s possible to view success as their departments hitting budget. In other words, success is achieved when individual teams win. They’re not concerned if the rest of the company falls short. I’ve seen that as the preferred outcome for many management team members. It makes them and their departments look good. They’re thinking, âہ“My installation department exceeded budget? Good. My job is done. In fact, truth be told I am kind of glad the other departments missed budget.â€Â (Sly smile)

Sure, departments are important, but their primary focus needs to be on the company.

The best way to get intentions aligned toward company goals is to confront the very real possibility that members of your management team are putting personal or department goals above the company’s. Acknowledge that it’s there. Discuss how important it is that intentions shift to company goals.

It may take a while to shift thinking away from being self-focused to being team focused. But a great team will only be great if intentions on the team are in the right place. Start there in building a great leadership team.

Nexstar members benefit from a wide variety of leadership training, including our Leadership Mastery course, where we bring leaders together to create alignment in mission, vision and message. Learn more about Leadership Mastery today.


Jack Tester is the President and CEO of Nexstar Network, a business development and training organization serving hundreds of independent plumbing, HVAC and electrical contractors in North America and internationally. Jack is also one of the foremost experts on business leadership in the HVACR industries. His book, “On the Shoulders of Giants,” was published in 2017, and he is the host of the Leadership Lounge Podcast, where he discusses business development from the leadership perspective. To see all of Jack's publications, click here. He can be reached at 651-789-8512 or [email protected].