6 september 2021

High-Performing Teams:
Work on High Belonging

6 september 2021

High-Performing Teams:
Work on High Belonging


We often associate high-performing teams with exceptional skills and capabilities. However, true high performance is not solely dependent on individual talents or expertise. The key ingredient that sets high-performing teams apart is high belonging. In a high belonging team, individuals feel emotionally connected, valued, and invested in each other’s success. Let’s debunk the myth of high performance and explore the transformative power of cultivating a sense of belonging within teams.

Belonging: The Key to High-Performing Teams:

Performance is indeed an outcome, but the true essence lies in how team members feel in connection to each other. In a high belonging team, individuals feel seen, heard, and appreciated for their whole selves—the good, the bad, and the ugly. Let’s delve into the essential aspects that define a high belonging team.

Belonging in Action

To understand the significance of belonging, consider these statements that colleagues can wholeheartedly reply with a loud YES:

  • “I feel seen and heard for all I am: the good, the bad, and the ugly.”
  • “My team members want to get to know all of me.”
  • “My team members are genuinely interested in how I feel.”
  • “My team members ask me questions to understand me better.”
  • “My team members appreciate my positive traits.”
  • “My team members know my triggers and red buttons.”
  • “In our team, we focus on progress as a team and learning as individuals.”
  • “I can clearly see how my work and contribution connect to our ambition and goals.”
  • “I can spend all my energy helping the team progress without worrying about what people think of me.”
  • “I see a future for myself in this team.”
  • “The future that I see in this team has meaning for me.”

The Power of Interaction

In high-belonging teams, what truly matters is the quality of interaction, rather than individual skills alone. These teams succeed not because they are inherently smarter or more talented, but because they create a safe and inclusive environment. Belonging cues become the guiding principles for nurturing a sense of connection and psychological safety within the team.

Belonging Cues

Belonging cues determine the depth of connection within a team. They include:

  • How much someone feels seen and valued as an individual.
  • How much positive energy is invested and released in the exchange.
  • How much future orientation the relationship seems to have.

The myth of high-performing teams solely relying on individual skills is debunked when we embrace the power of high belonging. In a high belonging team, individuals feel emotionally connected, valued, and invested in each other’s growth and success. The sense of belonging creates an environment where team members feel safe to be their authentic selves, share their vulnerabilities, and collaborate without fear or judgment. By prioritizing and nurturing belonging, teams can unlock their true potential and achieve outstanding performance together. 

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About the Author

Miranda Berkhof is an International Transformation Facilitator & Leadership Coach

At the core of Miranda Berkhof’s work lies leadership transformation. Miranda is deeply committed to guide leaders on their personal and professional journeys.  

With over 15 years of experience in developing leaders and transforming organisations, she understands that business/system transformation requires a personal transformation of leaders. 

In her words: “Life is a transformational journey, and so is leadership. In both, we are invited to learn, to add new discoveries through experience and to gain deeper insights about ourselves, and about how we relate to others and the world at large. Often, the best we can do is get out of our own way and allow ourselves to embark on the journey.”

May you live your best life and discover the new leader within,



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