Yeah…TEAM is spelled wrong to you, but to selfish teammates, that’s exactly how they spell team. They are right in the middle and feel they are more important than others.
Dealing with a selfish teammate can be tough. From time to time you will encounter people who have overly self involved attitudes and don’t really care about you or anyone else on the team. Maybe they didn’t get all of their emotional needs met when they were a kid. Maybe they didn’t have the proper boundaries set up by their parents. Or maybe they were spoiled.
The way I see it, these “I-guys” act like this to cover up some sort of shame they experienced when they were younger. Even though they may be confident on the outside, inside they have beliefs that the world is out to get them, and this nasty smokescreen is how they protect themselves. They look at things differently than you and I.
Human beings are hard wired to be perceptive and observant for the threats around us. Unfortunately, some of us are so dialed into this way of thinking, it actually blocks our ability to absorb good news.
What options do we have when dealing with them? Do we confront them or do we ignore them? If you are a team leader, you almost have the duty to confront them. The problem with this may stir up locker room problems. Some teammates may side with the narcissist rather than following you. Then you are creating separation…this could ruin a season.
If you ignore them, you are allowing this person to get away with their selfish or self-centered ways. Again, possibly hurting the team.
Well, the odds are, everyone can recognize what you are recognizing. The whole team knows who is selfish, and who has the best interest of the group in mind. So if you let this person get to you, the only person being hurt is you. The “I-guy” isn’t hurting because they are just being themselves…you are up in your own head getting pissed off. And its throwing you off your game.
The key here is focus. What are you focusing on?
Are you paying attention to the people who are helping the team, or are you paying attention to the people who are hurting the team. If a majority is there to help, that’s where the effort and energy need to go.
Let’s just say there are 12 people on your team. Should 1 person ruin the other 11? Take your focus and keep it on the 11 that think like you. It will move you and your team in the right direction, and it will keep you focused on what is important.
Hopefully over time, the lone wolf will change their ways and come around to join your pack.