As a business leader, it’s vital to build a solid, skilled and reliable team who can support you as you grow your enterprise. Although having the right combination of skills and experience is essential, another key part of creating top-performing teams is ensuring they can work together effortlessly.
That starts with the hiring process and continues through creating, expanding and managing the team. If you want to build a group of people who can help your business ascend to the next level, start with these pieces of advice.
Hire for attitude and ability
Of course, it’s vital to hire people with the right talent, experience and expertise, but there are other “softer” skills that play a critical part in choosing the right people.
- Attitude – What is the person’s general attitude to work? Ensure they’re able to take ownership of any tasks, that they’re self-starting, and that they can delegate and ask questions when they need to.
- Communication – Are they good communicators? You’ll want people who are very responsive and flexible when it comes to communications. This is especially important if you’re building virtual teams.
- Approachability – Hire people who are approachable and friendly. No one wants to work with others who have a short temper or are too busy to help when needed.
Ensure you cover all the necessary functions
Define exactly what you need the team to do, and use that to decide the capabilities you need on the team. Use those capabilities to fill the roles with highly competent, motivated people who have the right skills to carry out those functions.
Encourage an open communications and feedback environment
From the start, you’ll want to get clear lines of communication in place. This might mean weekly or daily team meetings, easy feedback loops, one-to-ones, or peer reviews of work. Ultimately, you want to create a friendly, open, constructive environment where feedback can be given freely and acted upon, to everyone’s benefit.
Make every member of the team feel valued and trusted
Even on a team, people are driven by their own motivations and needs. That’s why it’s important to understand what matters to each team member and use that insight to ensure they feel valued. This could be a friendly word or a thank-you, or a more formalized recognition and rewards system. Remember, it’s not (just) money that motivates your employees. Find out what else drives them, and use that to engage and inspire everyone to do their best and build trust throughout your business.
Encourage team and area-wide meetings and activities
Once your team is in place, it’s important to ensure they can meet and communicate with other individuals and teams, both within their own area and across the business. Encourage cross-functional working, acting-up opportunities, secondment or mentorship. Essentially, you want to give every team member an opportunity to grow in their career through working across and within other teams.
Reward and recognize your teams
Openly reward high-performing teams, and make it clear what they’re being rewarded for. Once teams and their members understand they’re being recognized, it will encourage similar, self-reinforcing behaviors across your business, which will only help to improve team cohesion.
Start with these techniques and you can rapidly build a high-class, top-performing team with motivated individuals providing the skills and services you need to grow your business.