Today’s workforce is looking for much more than just a paycheck. They want to know that they are making valuable contributions. They also care very much about the values that an organization lives as opposed to what the organization says. Living the values starts at the top but it is modeled by all members of the leadership team including the first line supervisors.
After you have hired the best people your challenge as a leader is to keep them engaged and producing results. And keep in mind that people want to feel that their work is producing meaningful results. Employees who are engaged will help create loyal customers who will rave about them and your company. That will happen because your engaged employees have exceeded customer expectations. But remember too that you will need cohesive and effective teams, not people in individual silos. While it is true that everyone has different talents, these must be blended to create a group effort.
Creating a winning team begins with creating a culture that allows your employees to challenge, to question, and to create. Get to know your entire team. Don’t just spend time with people with whom you are comfortable or those with seniority and experience. For example, some may be selected for their big picture systematic thinking and planning. Some may be selected for their attention to detail and getting things done right. Some may be selected for their consensus building and understanding of relationships. By the way you must look at that person that you perceive to be your weakest link. What is that person’s strength? Encourage him or her to leverage that strength.
Building a high performing team depends on the leader’s ability to construct relationships within the team. As the leader you must establish very clear goals and demonstrate full commitment to their achievement.
Trust is essential to success of the team. People must feel free to ask questions with the confidence that they will receive support and the information that they need. There must be honest, complete and open communication throughout the group.
Competency is important when creating highly effective teams. The personal competencies necessary for teamwork are technical and interpersonal skills, possibility attitudes, and the desire and ability to achieve goals. Technical competency is a thorough understanding of how to do the job and the skills required to fulfill the job requirements. Interpersonal skills are those skills required to successfully interact with others. Possibility attitudes include “All Hands On” confidence and a belief in one’s ability to positively influence outcomes. Each individual team member must bring high levels of personal and technical competencies. This means that every individual has a personal responsibility to make a positive contribution to overall team performance. Every team member knows his/her job, but they collectively have the attitude that each person on that team will do whatever it takes to get the job done.
A skillful leader empowers an engaged team which creates loyal customers and business success.
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