Fourth, clean up broken chords: no one is perfect, and sometimes you find yourself in a situation that prevents you from complying with your agreement. If this happens, take responsibility and make no apologies. If the agreements are broken, this can be an opportunity to re-engage in the team and ask the parties involved how you can do it properly. Try to find out all the underlying problems that contributed to the reason you broke the agreement. This will help you stay on track. I sometimes call it “the hypnosis of youth,” the things we learn early on, that become our opinion on how the world should work and how to play the game of life. And that is the beginning of the agreements that we are beginning to conclude with ourselves. Communication breakdowns in agreements are so frequent that one would expect it. I do not think it is due to an erroneous attempt to understand or be understood.
Most people desperately want to be understood even more than they want to agree. Unspoken and poorly communicated agreements are like small time-delay bombs that can leave at any time. And the more we do not practice good communication as spokespersons and listeners, the more we produce these little time-delay bombs that will explode if we least expect and cause enormous chaos. Third, renegotiating agreements that you may not be able to respect: familiarizing with colleagues can lead to tacit assumptions that they do not object to you launching a deadline or providing only part of what you have promised. This is an imaginary and tacit agreement that may not be true at all. If you have to break a deal, you renegotiate first with all the players involved and have enough time for everyone to adapt again. Then move forward in good faith. The reward of an organization that practices active listening and speaking around chords is very lively.
A team synchronized with all members is a team capable of working with optimal strength. Staying the course with our agreements means applying these good practices in a consistent manner. The alternative is disastrous and costly.