Purpose and related goals are the glue that holds a team together. Purpose without concrete goals is just a dream. Goals without purpose are aimless activity. But although they are critical, purpose and goals are not enough. A team also needs clarity. In particular, team members need clarity about:
•Members' roles and responsibilities — not everyone can do everything
•Important work processes — the way the team does its work, such as making decisions
•Values, norms, and standards that define what members expect of each other — how conflict, for example, may and may not be expressed
•The kinds of feedback and metrics needed to measure progress.
A purposeful team leader fosters and sustains this environment. Thus, instead of imposing and directing, you as suggest, support, define, focus on, talk about, expect, lead discussions about, and evaluate performance against the conditions that foster the spontaneous formation of a team. In the end only your group's members can make themselves into a team by freely committing themselves to a mutual purpose.