If you have experienced great teamwork you will recognise the energy lift you get when you are together. If you have been in a team where it is not doing so great, you will also recognise the soul sapping feeling every time you walk through the door at work.
If you are a team leader, and you want to create a team that is motivated, driven and energised to succeed follow these seven simple steps.
Step 1: Purpose
If your team has no idea of its purpose, you will lack focus and direction. Invest time in an away day, so that you can create your mission and vision together. You can spend some of this time really getting to know one another better, which will help with Step 2.
Step 2: Trust
This is not the kind of trust where everyone says ‘we really trust each other’ but they don’t actually mean it. This is the kind of trust where people can be open and honest and say what they think without fear of retribution or grudges being held. With this comes mutual regard and respect. If the team has a clear purpose it will act as a springboard from which trust can develop.
Step 3: Communication
With teams becoming more remote owing to greater globalisation and technological advances, communication can suffer. Have a clear communication plan that everyone can access at all times. Delegate the communication plan to different members of the team. Have regular check-ins to ensure everyone is up to date on what is happening.
Step 4: Understanding Each Other
Communication is not just for the data you are handling. Communication can break down easily between team members. We often view people in the likeness of ourselves and can be quite surprised when something we say lands in a way we didn’t intend. Understanding a bit about each other’s personality preference can go a long way to help a team avoid relationship meltdowns.
Step 5: Create a Workspace that Works for All
Open plan offices; an extrovert’s dream and the stuff of nightmares for introverts. How can you arrange the workspace to suit everyone’s needs? Delegate the task to the team to self-organise. If people are happy with their work space then they will be more productive. If the environment is noisy or busy, what can you do to provide quiet spaces for people to concentrate? Does that always have to be in the office?
Step 6: Conflict
The dreaded conflict word that is all too often avoided. Actually, conflict is a good thing if it is not an interpersonal one. Different views need to be heard if you are to avoid group think. If you have developed sufficient trust, conflict will not lead to relationship breakdown. If you do have an interpersonal issue in the team then speed is of the essence. Don’t leave a conflict to simmer as eventually it will impact on the rest of the team.
Step 7: Cultural Bias
If you have a multi-cultural team, be careful that the dominant culture doesn’t overpower. If team members are working in their non-native language they may need more thinking space. Allow plenty of opportunities for them to contribute and summarise often to check understanding. Think too about the age, and gender imbalance. If people feel in the minority, they may not feel as able to contribute.
These seven steps will start you on the right path, and you can buy the book ‘How to Coach your Team: Release Team Potential and Hit Peak Performance’.
To find out how you can do even more to create a team that everyone loves being in, click the Contact button now, or call us on 07468560780. Make 2017 your team’s best year yet!