At the 2014 Bid and Proposal Con (held by the Association of Proposal Management Professionals aka APMP), I had the pleasure of giving a presentation on team building titled “Mastering Team Management: Moving from Second Fiddle to Maestro.” The focus of the talk was how to use your team’s strengths, build cooperation, and be recognized as a resource.

We had a great discussion on ways to build fun into the process and how to get your team enrolled in your goal. My colleague, Ali Paskun, shared how she enrolled her team to meet all the project milestones so everyone could enjoy Thanksgiving with their families.

Proposal and project teams are people who work together to meet a common objective. Too often we become so focused on the “doing” we forget the human element. As Beatriz Arantes wrote in her Fast Company article, “How to Design your Workspace to Encourage Positive Emotions at Work”, we need to remember emotions occur every day in the workplace. Often they are the result of what is happening to us outside of work, but often it is due to stress, overwork, and fear of failure.

A good team leader is able to support their team’s emotional wellbeing through good communication, acknowledging team members daily, showing by example that emotions are acceptable; and having a sense of humor. Just as importantly, they know not to take people’s behavior and responses personally. Building trust and collaboration of a team leads to a successful project; with less overtime and much less stress.

If you’d be interested in having one of my presentations as part of your team training, contact me at