By nature, every one of us has his or her own habits and character. Just as it’s impossible to find identical leaves on the tree, there are no identical people in the world. Managing a team means finding a unique approach to each employee to ensure that work flows smoothly, the team gels and every member feels motivated and rewarded.
That sounds easy if you say it quickly enough, but what are the practicalities of establishing harmony among the workforce and creating a team that is greater than the sum of its parts?
The Golden Rule
“Treat people the way you would like them to treat you.” It might sound like something of a cliché, but the thing about clichés is they are based in solid, irrefutable fact. This Golden Rule is one that underpins everything that follows.
A wise man once said that we have two ears and one mouth for a reason. The best leaders will always have an ear open to ideas from employees. After all, they are the company’s main engine, and often understand the business better than those in the board room.
Appreciate and encourage
Reward success and learn from failure. The best managers will delegate the plaudits for a job well done to their team, while carrying the can for less glorious moments on their own shoulders. It might sound unfair, but sometimes, it’s tough at the top!
Choose the right environment
Today, a growing number of teams operate remotely, for example via platforms like Slack or Skype. These provide an opportunity to engage in “water cooler” type chat that is so important for teambuilding. For a more conventional office setting, location and layout are key considerations. If you are just starting out, an office in the suburbs might make more sense than a city centre location, and certainly engenders a greater feeling of belonging. Take a look at this website for some inspiration. For solid teamwork, you don’t need a rabbit warren of workstations, so focus on co-working spaces with informal seating where the team can spend time bonding and exchanging ideas.
Selecting your team
When choosing a team, in order to create an atmosphere of trust, respect and mutual understanding between your team members, follow these three simple rules:
1. Whatever your business is, do everything to create a stress-free atmosphere in the office. People who say they “thrive under pressure” are usually talking nonsense.
2. Find and nurture those who are prepared to go the extra mile and lend support to you and the rest of the team when it is needed most.
3. Hold on tight to those professionals who have a passion for what they do, even if they are not the highest performers. Attitude is as important as aptitude, and it could be that you have the right person but in the wrong role.
Keep the above in mind, and follow that golden rule we mentioned earlier, and there is no limit to what your team will be able to achieve!
Photo Credits: eOffice