Ensuring The Performance of Your Team
The role of a leader is to continuously assist their team to improve performance in the areas of quality and productivity. But do teams always have the right “culture” and environment to assist them to maximise this potential, as all too often a team will fail to capitalise these efforts, energies and investments made in improvement.
So how does a leader develop this culture? A good leader needs to recognise, understand and manage the issues confronting the people they lead. They need to understand what issues impact their individual and collective performance. A high performing team is the ultimate goal of any leader, but this will not be achieved if they do not embrace the thoughts and needs of their team members and seek to take them with them on a shared vision. A leader needs to recognise however that the needs and demands of a team constantly evolve and shift. If a leader is to attract, and harness the potential of team members, they must be willing to do what is required.
So is it possible to develop a team culture and environment that people want to be a part of, a culture of mutual benefit, clear accountability and results? Sounds like the Holy Grail doesn’t it? But there are some clear steps to assist any leader respond to the potential changes that are needed to positively challenge a team to achieve greater performance and productivity.
Consider these opportunities:
1. Understand that the team must be continually developed. A team is constantly shifting and never stands still; it is either shifting forward or moving back. As a leader, your role is to know where your team is today and where it is heading and adapt your style given the needs of the ever changing environment. A leader cannot lead in the same way at all times. They must assess their team’s needs as well as the needs of the individuals within the team and adapt their style accordingly.
2. As a leader, have you set the vision for your team? Do you have a group of individuals working toward their own individual goals, or do you have a team working toward a singular mutual goal and outcome? When a team works together, they enrich each other’s jobs, build skills, make work more meaningful, build motivation and improve efficiency and productivity. A strong leader demonstrates and communicates a clear direction to the team.
3. A leader manages dissatisfaction proactively. Dissatisfaction can occur for a number of reasons, including conflict between staff, no focus on continuous improvement, overwhelming work load or a team feeling out of their depth. This is where the greatest opportunity lives for a leader to assist. By LISTENING to the team’s needs and proactively managing issues, differences that are revealed through discussion can provide significant insight and provide opportunities for improvement.
4. As a team starts to move toward productivity and mutual trust, leadership also needs to evolve toward coaching rather than training and mentoring. A leader needs to demonstrate trust to their team and develop their self-confidence. Often the introduction of a coaching culture is valuable to assist team members to take on a problem solving approach and greater independence, rather than always seeking out guidance.
Team synergy means a team working together with mutual trust in each other and their leader. Individuals strive to embrace challenge and are self-confident. How are you capitalising on your greatest asset?