Building Great Teams
Organizational restructuring invariably means more emphasis on team working and team building skills are seen as essential to cultural, organizational and personal growth. Talent management relies on maximizing the potential talent of the team to be creative, innovative and effective in competing in a complex and challenging environment.
If you want a team to work collaboratively in an atmosphere of trust and commitment to common goals. Success depends on familiarity with each other’s work style, experience on prior teams, and their clarity of purpose and performance is hampered if team members don’t work well together.
Harnessing the potential of individuals as a team can be helped along with a few simple building blocks:
- Look for opportunities to mediate and resolve disputes before they escalate; ensure the focus is on the team’s higher goals.
- Focus on the ways in which team members work together and endeavor to improve communication, cooperation, trust, and respect in those relationships.
- Encourage good communication and focus on the value of each team member’s contribution and show how their roles interlink to move the entire team closer to goals.
- Encourage problem-solving by empowering the team to work on creative solutions together, be open to suggestions and value the ideas of all team members, good ideas can come from all quarters.
- Provide clarity around goals and standards – how do you define success; do you have established clear time frames, and do all team members understand their responsibilities.
- Consensus is important as it leads to better decisions and improved productivity by securing every employee’s commitment to the work at hand.
- Encourage debate as this inspires innovation and creativity and lead the team to better results.
10Eighty defines a team as a group of people working together toward a common goal. High performing team members are co-operative rather than competitive and support one another in working towards the common goal.
Build on strengths
You need to know the team, what matters to each individual, what makes them tick, what motivates them to invest their energy and commitment and offer that discretionary effort that makes all the difference? We use a strengths-based approach to help individuals and managers understand their skills, values, and motivators and make the most of them.
Aim to mentor team members, encourage them in passing on technical knowledge and sharing ideas and experience. Create a collaborative environment where employees feel comfortable to bounce ideas off each other and explore new perspectives. There are always innovative ways of doing business and it is important that new ideas are encouraged including the off-the-wall, outside the box, blue-sky thinking that can be inspirational.
A strong team needs support to discover the best ways of achieving goals and a level of autonomy to question and brainstorm and learn from their mistakes and inefficiencies. Collaboration doesn’t necessarily mean lack of conflict, on the contrary, learning how to address challenges makes a team stronger and more cohesive. Collaborative teams work successfully when members pick up on each other’s feelings, share their concerns and have the skill to challenge inappropriate behavior and give honest feedback.
Encourage and empower
Try to encourage an environment where all team members feel valued and empowered as this helps team members own their work, taking responsibility for their results and accountability for their actions.
Armed with a good awareness of team strengths and weaknesses the team can collectively discuss how team performance might be enhanced and how individuals can improve their contributions to the team. Team members learn from the thought processes of co-workers and use team discussion and reflection to compare team performance to goals. In essence, they develop greater levels of understanding and stronger working relationships among all members.
Employees are inspired to achieve peak performance when they work in an organization where excellence is expected; the best way to motivate high performing teams is to make that commitment to peak performance in your field or industry.