12 Tips to Bring Out the Best in Your Team
Smart, savvy leaders recognize the value of human capital as the most important asset of any company, and their ultimate success is directly tied to the abilities to motivate and inspire people.
Every leader desires to lead a great team -- a band of intelligent, creative, energizing, fun, productive superhumans. But great teams are built, not born. They don’t just happen. Someone has to put efforts in developing and fostering a great team.
Here are 12 ways to bring the best out of your team and propel them into uncanny greatness:
1. Shared Vision, Mission and Values
Your vision, mission and values form the foundation of your company, and its planning for the future. Vision guides people to where they are headed and what they want to accomplish. Mission-driven teams and organizations perform better, because they are able to see beyond their individual role and responsibilities, and devote themselves to what they value.
Vision and Mission Statement Examples from Real Companies:
Life is Good: Spreading the Power of Optimism
Google: Google’s mission is to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful.
Amazon: To be Earth's most customer-centric company where people can find and discover anything they want to buy online.
2. Instill a sense of purpose
People who have a sense of purpose at work will be more engaged and productive. When employees are engaged in their work, they enjoy what they do and tend to be more productive.
3. Set clear goals and defined priorities
Focus on shared goals and outcomes. Ideally, team goals should allow both the team as a unit and the individual members to achieve both personal and group goals.
4. Freedom to innovate and reinvent
People want to feel a certain degree of freedom -- free to explore new ideas, to experiment, and to develop (and adapt) their own working style. Just think about the enduring success of companies such as Google.
5. Develop a 360-degree trust in your organization
You've heard of 360 degree feedback, now get ready for 360 degree trust! Trust is essential to an effective team, because it provides a sense of safety. When your team members feel safe within their work environment, they are more inclined to open up, step up, take appropriate risks, and expose vulnerabilities. When trust is in place, each individual in the team becomes stronger, because he or she is part of an effective, cohesive group. When people trust one another, the group can achieve real success.
6. Encourage open, transparent communication
Trust-building begins with honest and transparent communication. Have clear measures of success and receive feedback about how they’re doing. The Gallup poll reported that employees whose managers hold regular meetings with them are almost three times as likely to be engaged. Additionally, Gallup's research found employees value communication from their managers about "what happens in their lives outside of work." All of this contributes to feeling the manager or team lead is invested in him or her as a real person.
7. Empower your team
Allow your team members to challenge the status quo. If innovation is important, it is critical that team members feel secure in being able to challenge processes if they feel that there is a way to improve. In order to innovate, teams need to be open to considering and constructively criticizing existing practices when needed.
8. Define and create Interdependence
Interdependence is a collaborative value that develops when a business builds a sense of community in the workforce and with this the spirit of team support. The result is synergy, which enhances and strengthens team success.
9. Invest in individual's personal and professional growth
Create a learning environment. Emphasize the development of individual as well as the team, learning through successes, but particularly through mistakes. A team with a culture of continuous improvement and where members are motivated to develop their skills and knowledge will naturally accelerate in its overall performance.
10. Recognize and reward good work and contribution
Use Team-Based Reward Systems. Too much emphasis on individual rewards can lead to in-fighting and resentment. A combination of individual and team-based rewards is often best.
11. Establish and maintain stable teams
Particularly in complex tasks, it takes a lot of time for team members to learn to work together at an optimum level. Keeping a team intact for the long term resulted in 60% more productivity; teams were more predictable and responsive.
12. Promote work-life harmony
The ability to successfully combine work, family commitments and personal life is important for the well-being of employees. Today’s enterprises need to support the ability to work where, when, and how their employees want, yielding higher productivity and greater personal satisfaction.
“When a team outgrows individual performance and learns team confidence, excellence becomes a reality." ~ Joe Paterno