7 Top Tips For Improving Team Working

TeamWhat can team leaders do to improve team working? In my blog ‘Team Working: What does it Actually Mean?’ I talked (not surprisingly given the title!) about what we might mean by the term ‘Team Working’ and, using examples of performance objectives, how we might describe ‘Team Working’ to our employees. In this blog I’m going to outline my 7 top tips for improving the way your team members work as a team

So, here goes: in order to improve team working, and build a highly effective team, be sure to spend some time focusing on…

1. TEAM PURPOSE

• Agree the purpose of the team

• Agree team objectives

• Plan with the team

• Agree individual objectives for team members and share these with the team

• Regularly review team purpose and objectives

2. EMPOWERING THE TEAM

• Allow, as far as possible, team members to devise their own ways of achieving their objectives

• Coach and train

• Work with team members to identify and obtain the resources they need

• Identify with team members their personal strengths and work with them to find ways to utilise those strengths

• Understand the strengths and weaknesses of the team

3. TEAM WORKING RELATIONSHIPS AND COMMUNICATION

• Hold regular team briefings

• Encourage openness and honesty by inviting feedback and ideas

• Model openness, honesty, understanding and acceptance

• Listen

• Encourage and value difference of opinion

4. TEAM FLEXIBILITY

• Develop the teams understanding of the different roles and functions

• Train team members in different roles and functions

• Manage changing demands through communication and involvement

• Encourage a range of ideas and approaches and explore these fully

5. TEAM PRODUCTIVITY

• Effectively manage performance

• Develop effective decision making processes

• Develop problem solving and performance improvement processes

6. TEAM RECOGNITION AND APPRECIATION

• Regularly review individual performance

• Regularly review team performance, as a team, and celebrate success

• Ensure the achievements of the team are recognised in the organisation – promote the team

7. TEAM MOTIVATION

• Work with members to understand their motivational / satisfaction needs

• Effectively manage conflict and difficulties

• Regularly review with the team the ‘how’ of team working

• Regularly review and reinforce the team purpose and objectives

IMPROVING TEAM WORKING: SUMMARY

I guess the problem with lists of tips like the one above is that they can describe the ‘perfect world’ scenario. In reality, I know that as a team leader you are often short on time and resources. So my top tip is this; start at the top of the list and identify one or two things you can start working on straight away (don’t try to do everything at once!)

You’ll see from my tips that performance objectives are one of the keys to clarifying purpose. If you would like to know more about how to use performance objectives – the easy way then grab a copy of my free special report ‘Performance Objectives Made Easy’ HERE

 

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