As the world moves out of recession the pressure is on for business leaders to do more with less. This may at first seem to be a “big-ask”, but there are areas where significant gains can be made by doing more with what you’ve got, lots more. One of those is tuning your team to gain the best performance as you would a high performance engine.
It has been said that a team is not a team until it has been made into one. Before then it remains a group. At best a group delivers the same result as if its members worked individually. At worst they work against each other reducing effectiveness and often creating a toxic atmosphere which spills over and poisons the onlookers. But when they are formed into a properly functioning team they can be many times more effective; then they become a high performance team
Where is your team on the scale ranging from pulling against each other thru parity with a group of individuals to performance with exceeds expectations?
Based on the work of Pat MacMillan (The Performance Factor*) here is a simple diagnostic tool to help you decide.
In Part 1 we look at the issues of:
For your team to be a great team the members must be” Aligned”. This requires a clear and shared purpose and a 100% commitment to realising that shared purpose in a common and coherent way. The following questions will help you consider exactly how Aligned your team is:
Clarity is required in the minds of the team as to exactly what is the role of each member.
A High Performance Team requires clear and competent leadership to facilitate and orchestrate the achievement of its goals. However, for specific activities task leadership will be provided by individual team members who have the necessary competence and capability to guide on that issue. Thus effective leadership at any specific time is not based on a static position but by dynamic response to the encountered need and individual role.
Find a quiet place for half an hour and ask yourself these questions about your team and see how they score. In the light of the answers you get begin to work out an action plan to address your team’s weaknesses.
Then don’t forget part two in which we will take a look at:
Would it make a difference to team functioning if your team was made up of professionals or shop floor workers? What do you think?
The Creative Leader Bulletin is a free resource for business and Third Sector leaders. It is currently running a series called The Spirited Team. Along with other postings at the Creative Leader an in this blog It may give you some ideas for your team.
*The Performance Factor, Pat MacMillan, B&H Publishing, ISBN-8-8054-2375-3