A Leader’s Focus of Treatment; The 5 Keys to Connecting, Building & Evolving in Team Meetings!!!

I know it’s not the sexiest of titles, A Leader’s Focus of Treatment, however it was one of the first impactful things I ever implemented after my first promotion into a leadership position… beginning the evolutionary process from Manager to Leader! It was the first concept I ever named, stood behind, and I had to fight to keep going; as many employees from your Inspired & Motivated to your Grouches will be lulled into “Busy” over “Better” if you let them!

I worked in a Mental Health facility and my team met once per week with our site’s psychiatrist. The format was I’d sit in the conference room with our psychiatrist and each therapist would come in for their allotted time to review their caseload. During that time, the therapist would provide a brief update, medication would be reviewed, and if the parents would like to attend that would be great! The problem was… this format provided necessary information to our psychiatrist, provided some impact for our residents, and support for their families… but did nothing for us as a team regarding connection, communicating, bonding, trust, or brainstorming by the people who work together and depend on one another all day long! Therefore, A Leader’s Focus of Treatment was forged. So, how to do it?

It’s first important to note that your people will not see this as necessary… most likely as another meeting in the day and week that they’re too busy for! So, explain what it is, its impact, the format, the frequency, and duration of time. Our meeting was one time per week for 45 mins. You won’t win everyone over right away, however as you stay consistent and not cancel… watch what happens!

The P.O.W.!

You’ve heard me mention The P.O.W.; as it’s the most powerful and impactful way I start your 1-on-1 Meetings and Team Meetings… It’s the Positive of The Week! As a leader, you always go first; sharing a professional and personal  positive. In my initial meetings at the Mental Health Facility, I lead a team of four therapist; therefore we had time for everyone to share. It’s essential to put a 1-miunte time cap on it. Remember, just because it’s fewer people doesn’t mean a Chatty Cathy or Chatty Carl won’t take up the whole time! When your team is larger, select 3-4 people at random before you share your P.O.W.; allowing them time to think before sharing aloud. Lastly, be sure everyone knows an applause after each person shares is mandatory. Most people aren’t going home or closing their laptops to a standing ovation! Be sure you and the team provide that gift of an applause… and believe me… they’re going to love it when it’s their turn to be applauded for!

Focus of Treatment!

When I travel to organizations around the world, one of the most important concepts I stress is leaders protecting their people by being aware of their “List”. Perhaps their list of duties is too long and they’re about to burn-out. Perhaps it’s too short and they’re about to bore-out. Perhaps, it’s the right length, but the severity of issues on the list are driving them crazy!

During my team meetings, I’d have a list of everyone’s clients and tasks. When the P.O.W.’s were over, it was time to go down the list of each therapist (including my own) and select 3-4 of their clients or tasks to review (picking up where we left off the following week and continuing down the list).

This process was done for a BIG reason… in the weekly meetings with the psychiatrist, in conversations in the hallways with staff, or in your own head it’s easy to discuss the client or issue that holds your current Emotion-of-the-Minute! Perhaps you’re upset, dejected, or overjoyed… it’s easy to talk or vent about. But what about the quiet, low-key, under-the-radar client? They’re the ones that tend to get ignored and then have no other choice but to act up to get attention, help, or better care… not on my shift!

The question now becomes… What’s Your Focus of Treatment?

This question examines, what are you working on with this individual… or in your case… a project, a client, or prospect? How’s it going? What’s your next step/s?

These are simple questions, but questions rarely asked as you may be surprised that your employee is working on nothing… or the wrong thing, has no plan and simply is winging it! You never know until you ask! This takes us to the next key:

Proud Of!

After The Focus of Treatment; let’s get positive again! Here’s a simple question to throw out for everyone or a few if your team is large… Professionally, what are you most proud of since we last met? In our meetings, it was what case, intervention strategy, or success are you most proud of? It’s amazing what you’ll hear. Most staff in organizations are made aware of the BIG WINS; but rarely do staff and coworkers know each other’s little wins! This allows us to celebrate one another, celebrate the client, and also have a renewed sense of positively and hope in a very challenging and tough place to work! Also, I’ve found caregivers do the worst job of caring for themselves and tooting their own horn is not natural for them. “Proud Of” allows for applause, recognition, and small wins to be seen and felt!


Short and sweet… what issues are you having? This refers to the places professionally where your people maybe stuck. They don’t know where to start, or have done everything they know how to do and run out of ideas, or the resistance their meeting from their client, prospect, or even their own organization are stifling progress. What to do?

My first rule is to ask two things…

  1. What’s YOUR suggested solution for the problem you’re sharing?
  2. If you had this situation to do over again, is there anything you would’ve done differently? I believe most people have the answer inside of them but either a manager is too impatient to coach them through it or the employee accepts answers without digesting the “Why”.

With this said, there are times when your people simply don’t know and now it’s time for the final key…

Solutions & Fine-Tuning!

When you people are tapped out of possible solutions to address their issue…. What a time to brainstorm as a team; asking their coworkers their thoughts, suggestions, or ways they’ve conquered similar issues. Remember, leaders build other leaders… allowing your team to assist each other will inevitably enhance trust, respect for one another’s knowledge base, and unity while working together as a team outside of meeting-time! After solutions are offered, you have the opportunity to sprinkle your thoughts if necessary, shed light on unforeseen roadblocks, share alternative ideas, or connect with leaders below you, at your level, or above to ensure the idea grows wings and is followed through.

I mentioned earlier I had to fight to keep our Focus of Treatment Meetings going… Why will you, as a leader, have to fight to keep such an impactful thing going? As our Mental Health Facility grew, our responsibilities grew, our leadership and clientele changed, and the culture and flow of our building also changed. During meetings, we would hear screaming and chaos in the hallways…and it was as if every member of my team had an ejection button as a seat cushion. One person would pop up and say, “I/We have to go help!”… and this would occur throughout the meeting… Outside of the frustration of this; it was a really funny scene to witness as it looked like Whack-a-Mole playing out in real life, Lol!

I overstood and respected their passion, empathy, and eagerness to support staff and assist with clients; however, as a leader, I knew how much more important it was to have the meeting… for several reasons:

  1. We can be “Busy” in putting out fire after fire or be “Better” as we focus on addressing the real issues and real plans of impact to that address the root of the fire.
  2. No one ever knocked on the door for our help… it was an internal pull within awesome people. The truth is, the organization overall had accepted a new clientele and failed to hire the appropriate staff to address new concerns. The existing staff had to evolve or receive proper training to be able to evolve their skills… and that couldn’t happen with our team saving the day every time there was a yell or scream.
  3. The more my team acted outside of their position, the less they would like their job, the quicker they’d burn-out and leave or burn-out and stay, and that wasn’t my idea of success!

Therefore, to address the emotional needs of the team, to assist staff in the building, and to maintain the impact of A Leader’s Focus of Treatment we agreed to shorten the meeting and have it twice per month instead of weekly. I’d like to say it was a smooth transition, but it wasn’t and was very hard for several members to have the meeting in the midst of screams, banging, and chaos! We discussed ideas of having the meeting off-site, before the work-day, or after the work-day… perhaps these options are suitable for your team and organization.

As a leader, in times of stress, you will be tempted to cancel your meetings, to get rid of the P.O.W., and all of the things you or your people may see as fluff…. DON’T! These little but big things will improve your team and organization, increase connection, and evolve your process instead of running around like a chicken with your head cut off plugging holes while the dam is sure to burst. You may modify… but don’t cancel!

“As a leader, in times of stress, you will be tempted to cancel things you or your people may see as fluff…. DON’T! These little but big things will improve your team and organization, increase connection, and evolve your process instead of running around like a chicken with your head cut off plugging holes while the dam is sure to burst… Be Mindful!”  – Andre Young

Written by: Andre Young

Click www.youevolvingnow.com to connect, chat, and to find out more about Andre Young’s Leadership & Work/Life Harmony Trainings, Speaking Engagements, Books, and more; evolving your organization, your leaders, employees, and teams!

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