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The "4 S" Stages of Team - Stoked!

Updated: Mar 10

Where you live - the state of your team

This is the third of our 4-part series that unpacks the characteristics and helpful tips to navigate four key states teams find themselves in -

1. starting

2. stuck

3. shook

4. stoked

You’re stoked!

Congratulations! Your investment in your team and strong leadership has led to a healthy team. You're most likely enjoying:

  • Goal attainment.

  • Lots of connection and engagement.

  • A collective sense of meaning in the work experience.

This is the ultimate "yes, and" opportunity!

It sounds like you're already the type of leader who puts people first and invests accordingly. We like to say that yours is likely the team that others would "swipe right" to join. And this is the perfect opportunity to build on the good momentum to expand influence and impact in meaningful ways.

Mix it up

You've got a strong team which also means there is an ongoing mandate to keep them challenged and invigorated. Your team is primed to learn, implement, and benefit from less conventional and more creative approaches to problem solving and innovation. Here's where everyone can have a ball applying humor techniques to arrive at unexpected genius.


You've likely fostered a sense of psychological safety in your team. This is a good moment in time to continue investing here. It's much easier to deepen mastery in this area when the team is already experiencing a felt sense of comfort with one another. We get a ton of engagement on this topic in workshops which means there is an appetite from teams to understand these principles better.


You've got a good thing going. Now's an ideal time to develop an externalized model (we love using a brain circuits paradigm) of what's going on if/when we detect signs of misalignment and tension brewing. Prevention is always the best approach, and having an externalized model is a useful device to "call in" versus "call out" potentially problematic behavior in a way that prevents team members from armoring up. (Thanks goes to Professor Loretta Ross for developing this concept).

Be the change

A strong team has so much power. We cannot overstate a strong team's opportunity to expand reach by cascading this culture through the development of junior leaders at other levels in the organization as well as affecting change in adjacent cross-functional team alliances.

The VITAL5 ROUNDUP - The "4S" Stages of Teams - Stoked!

  1. Yes, and – Just like in improv, this is a perfect opportunity to build on your momentum.

  2. Mix it up – The team's perfectly poised to ditch convention and try more creative approaches to problem solving and innovation..

  3. Deepen – Keep investing. Deepen mastery of psychological safety while the team is currently experiencing it.

  4. Prevention – Develop a method or externalized model the team can point to if/when early signs to trouble arise so that it can be addressed without anyone armoring up.

  5. Be the change - The power of your strong team can expand reach and influence both cross-functionally and in the development of more junior leaders at different levels in the organization.

VitalConex is a connect-and-create company. To learn more about the "peanut butter cup" of successful teams, check us out at

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