When it comes to running a successful business, having a strong and capable team can often make or break your efforts. If you sense a weakness in your current team, whether it be a breakdown in communication or general inefficiency, working on that weakness as soon as possible is vitally important. On the other hand, even if you have an already strong team, taking steps to strengthen it can mean taking that team from acceptable to incredible. Here are some of the steps you can take to boost the strength of your current team.
The key to survival for any species is being able to successfully adapt to change, and a business is no different. In the cases of some teams, everything goes swimmingly when the team’s mission goes according to plan. But as soon as something goes wrong, the whole objective falls apart. You can help your team reduce the risk of this happening by focusing on adaptability. Talk to team members about what to do if something goes wrong or if complications arise. Of course, one of the best ways to learn is to do so while on the job. Rather than scolding teams or only offering suggestions after the fact, be prepared to offer constructive advice if something gets in their way.
Focus on Collaboration
One of the most important parts of being a team is, of course, teamwork. Some people are naturally better team players than others. If your team is full of hardheaded independent thinkers, introduce collaboration tools to help them get accustomed to working with one another. Finding appropriate tools for collaborating with your team can help keep everyone on the same page. These collaboration tools will look different depending on what your team is working to accomplish. They may look like online platforms where employees can communicate and share progress. They can also take the form of a general strategy for brainstorming and task delegation. Either way, devoting a little time helping your team collaborate will go a long way when it comes to results.
There is some research to suggest that small workplace teams work better than larger ones. While some projects may need to be all hands on deck, others are easier to accomplish with a divide and conquer approach. If a given project seems to call for it, separating your team into smaller groups may be wise. For instance, if a given project involves several discrete tasks, you can save your team time by assigning a small group to each task, rather than simply asking them to divide the work themselves. However, make sure you don’t do the dividing randomly and take time to consider employee personalities and who will work together best. If your sub-teams have major personality clashes (or are made up entirely of your least motivated employees), this approach will likely be less efficient.
Have Regular Meetings
This approach can help your team quickly identify what’s working, what isn’t working, and how to improve. However, not just any meeting style will work. If you want honest collaboration, you’ll need a meeting that is free of judgement. Many people, especially those who are anxious or have a tentative idea, will avoid speaking up for fear of being dismissed or ridiculed. Make sure to host team meetings that give everyone an equal opportunity to speak. It’s important to emphasize that you are looking for input from each team member, whether that input is positive or negative. While it’s good to have regular meetings, make sure you don’t overdo these. Many people view meetings as a chore, and if you’re having your team meet every other day, this might decrease the quality of the input you get. Leave a reasonable amount of time between meetings and consider bringing refreshments. This will encourage your team members to relax and enjoy the time sharing.
Make Sure Your Team Communicates With Other Departments
Making sure your team members can effectively collaborate with one another is a very important focus. However, some managers end up getting trapped in a state where they can’t see the forest for the trees. That is to say, they focus so much on strengthening their team that they forget to make sure their team communicates with others in the company. After all, few company endeavors are a one-team job. Your team will be stronger if its members are integrated into the office. Be sure to introduce your team to other teams working on the same project. This will help avoid mistakes and ultimately make your team stronger.
Working to strengthen your team doesn’t only benefit your company, it also benefits your team members themselves. When they feel confident working with each other and taking on tasks, they will have significantly less stress while on the job. Be patient, try different strategies, and watch your team build its strength up.
For more ways to be a great leader to your team, read on, here!