A successful team needs:
Objectives – shared and agreed, including timelines (SMART Targets)
Roles & Responsibilities – these must be clearly defined
Communications – an effective working language and the capability to use it (remote working)
Ability to Manage – not just the task but also the relationships within the team
Within any team the individual input directly impacts upon the team result. Contributions to the overall team effort are ascertained by two ideas. Personal growth needs (for achievement and personal development) and social needs (perceived benefits of working with others rather than alone). Some people in your team will be more inclined toward the social benefit than the personal and vice versa.
The characteristics of how your team members work should be noted. This will have a huge impact on the success of your project. Some of the traits are below:
Natural hard workers, may need little supervision or external motivation but perhaps some direction
Some who require encouragement to remain focused on the task at hand, or indeed to be productive at all
You may have meticulous and dedicated individuals who need all tasks spelt out clearly.
You could have any combination of the above within members of your team.
What are teams?
Both formal and informal teams exist within organisations. Formal teams are departments and sections of people who work directly together on a continuous basis, in pursuit of specified objectives. There are also teams of senior managers who meet regularly with an agreed agenda.
Informal teams could be managers from different departments or divisions who meet informally to discuss and deal with a specific issue. It can also be smaller elements of a team who discuss things during a break.
In smaller companies the whole workforce could be classed as a team.
How to manage teams?
If the manager of the team gets to know the team members, and how they naturally work then they can use this information to help the team reach the goal successfully. For an effective team you need to organise people so they can work to their strengths rather than solely by perceived role. This could be due to job title or historic input from previous team members.
Jack, that left last month might have been stronger in an area than Jill, who just replaced him. Trying to wedge Jill in Jack’s exact spot in the team will lead to a lower team output and morale. Altering the roles slightly so that Jill can use some of her strengths will have a better result.
It is also important to highlight any essential areas of contribution that are missing. Then we can devise a plan to solve this. This will maximise the team’ success. Any potential conflicts of strong personalities need to be determined early in the team formation. Thus, allowing effective management of this threat.
If you bring in a consultant who specialises in high performance work teams you will be able to free up time of your in-house managers. The consultant also won’t be involved in the politics and therefore not distracted in any way from the end goal. You often find that employees want to impress new manager’s and they see it as their chance to shine. We can harness this for you and bring out the best from your teams. We will empower you to implement the same approach on future projects.
A successful team needs: