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Mad, Sad, Glad! A Simple Leadership Tool for Building Trust

Good morning, I'm sat out in the sun on a lovely Sunday morning here at Successfactory, beautiful views. It is great to get outside - even with the infra red heaters on!

As you know my work involves building many high performance teams as organisations realise the importance of collaboration and real teamworking in today's foggy world. I believe a key part of a leaders role is to build elite, high performance teams so they can fix things, and take advantage of all the possibilities out there - quickly.

More and more I'm finding that cross functional, cross company, partnership, multicultural, and virtual teams are required to be created and led effectively. In a previous blog I outlined the 6P's process I use here at Successfactory which is a great process you can use to set up a team. In this blog I'd like to share another simple, free and very powerful tool you can use to enhance teamworking.


Once a clear purpose is set and understood by the team it is important to build trust by getting to know each other and how you like to operate. With the cost conscious world we live in now there isn't always the money available to use one of the many wonderful psychometrics out there.

Here is a very simple and effective way to understand the differences in your team for FREE- it is called MAD SAD GLAD. At the end of the exercise you will see the patterns of your team members personality and their values.

What is it?
A useful tool to help you understand team members. It also guides you in how you communicate with each other and interact in the best way to achieve a positive team climate and great results.

Where can I use it? Areas it can be used are:

  • Building trust;
  • Enhancing relationships;
  • Managing conflict;
  • Building awareness;
  • Project set up workshops;
  • Reviewing;
  • Understand why people are behaving like they are;
  • Creating a positive work environment;
  • Team building.

How do I use it?

  • Personally invite team members to a workshop sharing and explaining the purpose of the session;
  • Explain why this is useful and what the benefits are of doing it and what it can overcome.
  • Use real life good and bad examples to illustrate if possible.
  • Set up a relaxed environment
  • Welcome team to workshop and then explain reasons why here again, set boundaries, ground rules etc. Hopes and Fears is a great tool to use at the start.
  • Then ask each person to think about what makes them Mad, Sad and Glad.
  • Record on a flip chart, visual board, or even a paper table cloth on the table
  • Discuss and draw out patterns
  • Agree ways of working based on data
  • Use on a regular basis as a review tool to understand why people feel like they do and to ensure you are working well together.
  • Worked Example...

have fun using it...

Every success,