If the last decade of business research has taught us anything, it’s that if you want to know how to increase productivity, raise job satisfaction, and create a healthy working environment you need to learn about creating and managing a team. Effective, high performance teams are the one thing that almost all top companies have in common.
Not all organisational teams can be considered as high performance teams. High performance teams are those that are committed to working together in order to accomplish the business goals, individual goals, and personal goals. These teams are able to improve your business in a way that no ordinary company team or individual workers would be able to.
In this article you can learn about how to make your own high performance teams and how to manage them in a way that keeps their performance at an elevated level.
HOW TO CREATE A TEAM
Not every team has the capability to be a good team. There must be a proper mix of people and talents if you intend to create a team that will perform well. Building a team can be the hardest part of team management, as you must be able to make a calculated guess at how certain members will work together. If a particular member is not a good contributor to the team, you must be able to evaluate if they are a necessity in that team and figure out if you can replace them or not.
BEST PRACTICES: CREATING A HIGH PERFORMANCE TEAM
- Look for the best workers inside and outside of the company.
High performers may take some time and some work to acquire, but the difference between them and an average performer can make a lot of impact on how well the team works. Taking the time to look for high performers to add to your team is a good way to use your time to create a great team.
- Find workers with skills that match your team’s needs.
Don’t add anyone to the team unless their knowledge and skills are needed for the work. If there are already enough team members working in those same skill areas, you may create a frustrating situation where there is too much labor and not enough work to be done. Nothing creates disgruntled employees faster than not being needed for the job.
- Prioritise a healthy teamwork environment to achieve results.
Instead of trying to force new members onto a team, think about what s best for the team. Will this new member add or detract from the current teamwork level? Are they a good fit with the other members? The team mix is very important if you want to have a great team, so think about this before you add a new team member.
- Remove or replace non-productive team elements.
On the other hand, if someone on the team is not being productive and not performing well, it might be a good idea to remove or replace them. When other members have to put in extra efforts to cover the incomplete work from one member, they can easily become very dissatisfied with the team itself and the whole performance level will be brought down.
HOW TO MANAGE A TEAM
Even if you have created the “perfect” team, your job is not over as a manager. You are now responsible for managing that team in a way that will help them to stay productive and keep up the high performance. Many times if a high performance team is managed improperly their performance can suddenly become quite average or even poor. It’s up to you to make sure that you are getting the best results from your team and creating an atmosphere in which high performance teamwork can thrive.
BEST PRACTICES: MANAGING A HIGH PERFORMANCE TEAM
- Give recognition and credit when it is due.
When the entire team or any individual on the team does great work or goes beyond their responsibilities to get something done, acknowledge their efforts. This can be accomplished by something simple like audible recognition during a team meeting or something more such as an individual or team reward.
- Delegate responsibilities and avoid micromanagement.
One of the worst things you can do as a manager is to try to manage everything the team is doing. If you want your high performers to do the best job they can, you have to let them have some space and responsibilities. Delegate some tasks and expect them to be done well; there is a good chance that your high performance team will not disappoint.
- Involve team members in the goal-making process.
How can you help employees become more engaged in the work that needs to be done? By including your team members in the process of making goals, they will know that their thoughts and opinions are valued by the organisation. This can help increase employee engagement in the goals of the business.
- Create measurable progress assessments and keep team members accountable.
This step goes hand-in-hand with delegation and goal-making. You will want to make sure there are measurable performance matrixes set up so that each employee can know what they have accomplished and what still needs to be done. Doing this will help you as the manager make sure that work is getting done by your team without any micro-management from you. It also allows team members to keep themselves and each other accountable for their work.
- Promote organisational goal transparency.
True engagement in the work means that employees must be able to see how the work they do actually affects the organisation as a whole. Goal transparency can help with this. To achieve goal transparency you should be able to show your employees what the strategic goals of the organisation are, the operational goals of your sector and other sectors of the business, and then demonstrate in a logical way how these things all work together to improve the business.
- Give useful and relevant feedback.
Make sure your employees always get the necessary feedback to perform well at their job. If they do not know that they are doing well or poorly, there is no way for them to be confident in their work. Feedback can help your team members become confident that their contributions are relevant and appropriate, giving them a greater sense of being appreciated and useful.
TYING IT ALL TOGETHER
Both creating and managing a team are important skills to learn if you want to keep a high performance team in your organisation. If you cannot create a good team mix, it’s highly unlikely that any amount of great management will turn the team into high performers. On the other hand, you could put together the perfect mix of people, but due to mismanagement they might become disgruntled and highly dissatisfied with the work, leading them to do mediocre work as a team.
For the most ideal results, you’ll need to create a good mix of people for your team and then adapt your management style to deal with the team’s needs most effectively. If you can effectively apply these tips, you may be able to create and manage your own high performance team in your business.