It’s no secret that most business teams desire to be successful in their respective industries. However, success doesn’t happen without optimal performance from team members. Therefore, businesses must carefully build their teams with success in mind. The operative word here is “build” because a big misconception among team leaders is that the success of others can merely be duplicated. No, successful business teams have to be built from the ground up. Below, I list five keys to building a successful business team from the ground up:
KEY #1: Employ Strong Leadership
I believe strong teams require strong leadership! Because the spirit of leadership is contagious, it’s critical for business teams to employ strong leadership throughout their organizations. I believe leadership should never be weak, passive or unintentional. Strong leadership is about setting clear vision, being assertive, and taking responsibility for team productivity – good or bad. It is essentially the foundation for building a solid business team – one that’s poised for success.
KEY #2: Recruit the Best Team Members
It’s not surprising that business teams often spend a lot of resources, financial and otherwise, in efforts to recruit the best team members to their organizations. There’s no flaw in this logic.
The mistake, however, is often made when teams perceive the best team members as those only having the best individual talents or skillsets. Contrastingly, I believe that the best team members are those who ultimately work best inside of the team concept. It doesn’t matter how good a person’s skill or ability is if their behavior, attitude or actions prove to be counterproductive to the rest of the team. Remember that classic job interview question, “Do you work well with others?” Never be afraid to ask it! Even take it a step further by doing background references on a potential team member. Remember, just because an individual works well doesn’t necessarily mean he or she works well with others.
KEY #3: Clarify Roles
When building a successful team, it’s critical that everyone on the team knows their particular roles. Roles and their associated responsibilities are often clarified through job descriptions. In any event, I can’t stress the importance of each team member knowing exactly what his or her role is on the team. Having roles on a team are like having lanes on a roadway; whereas, lanes prevent crashes – roles prevent clashes! It’s such a waste of time and productivity when team members clash over who’s to play what roles on the team. Therefore, it’s imperative that all team members know explicitly what their assigned roles are as well as be held accountable for fulfilling those roles.
KEY #4: Establish a Teambased Culture
During one of my team-based presentations, a lady in attendance asked me if I thought an organization should have a family paradigm or team paradigm. Without hesitation I told her that I believe teams should have a team paradigm verses a family one because we tend to bend rules for those we recognize as family. I went on to explain how organizations often get into trouble when trying to take care of the man instead of the mission. That’s why I believe organizations should establish a team-based culture in which everyone is conscious of doing what’s best for the overall team. Additionally, when a team’s culture is steeped in unity and has cooperative interaction among its team members, then success becomes a very viable outcome.
KEY #5: Evaluate Individual and Corporate Performances
One of the main keys to building a successful business team is evaluating individual and corporate performances. The whole purpose of evaluating performances is not to harass or intimidate team members, but rather to produce maximum results through effective evaluations. Sometimes, individual team members aren’t as efficient as they need to be; this in turn affects the corporate performance of a team. However, it is through the evaluative process that team leaders determine the best course of action to deal with inefficiency among team members. In some instances, team members will have to be developed more or trained in order to produce maximum results. In other instances, some team members may have to be released from the team if there are no notable improvements. In any event, business teams must be committed to implementing frequent, objective evaluations in order to attune their organizations for peak performances.