Success is a team sport. No matter how strong the individual performance, you’ll always need a strong team to stand beside you. Talking about high performance teams is easy, but creating one is not. This is down to the best teams seeming almost organic in performance – they keep achieving goals in a self-sustaining manner. But make no mistake; highly performing teams are not magic. With the right building blocks your organization can establish a team like this.
Become a high-impact leader
A well-oiled team needs to have a leader who enables the team to achieve success. The team needs a leader who creates the right environment for establishing goals and who holds up the standards of high performance.
According to Phil Harkins, Founder and Executive Chairman of Linkage, a high-impact leader will showcase four qualities. These are:
- The leader is able to define goals and the vision with clarity and in terms of the overall operational aims, the so-called bigger picture.
- The leader lays out the processes and procedures required for achieving these objectives.
- The leader communicates in a way that enhances trust, encourages innovation and boosts the energy of the team.
- The leader knows how to bring together the right people to collaborate.
If you are looking for team members, this blog post will ensure you hire the right person. On the other hand, if you are preparing for an interview, use the tips from Frugaa as a guide.
Focus on the characteristics of high-performance teams
In order to create a team that’s performance driven, you need to be aware of the characteristics of such team. It’s hard to know if your team is succeeding, if you don’t know what success looks like.
Design Intelligence has studied high-performing teams and found six key characteristics to describe these teams. According to their research, your team needs to exhibit:
- A common purpose – with a strong vision, people will find it easier to commit to the team.
- Well-defined roles – you need team members to have a clear set of individual objectives to achieve and this is best achieved through roles.
- A competent leader – as shown above, a high-impact leader will motivate the team and lead by an example to maintain a solid team framework.
- Effective processes – just like the roles, the tasks must be clearly defined to ensure everyone is aware of what needs to be done, when and how.
- Strong relationships – a high-performing team doesn’t have to be a group of best friends, but the relationships must be solid and based on trust and respect.
- Enhanced communication – relating to the above point, the team must communicate effectively and in a fast and clear manner.
Deal with team conflicts efficiently
There isn’t a team in the world that doesn’t occasionally face the ups and downs. Since the best teams are diverse, bringing together a set of unique talents and viewpoints, the diversity can sometimes lead to conflict.
The issue, therefore, isn’t that conflicts appear, it is more about how you solve them once they pop up. There are a few key steps you need to take to ensure your team’s performance doesn’t suffer as a consequence:
- Don’t ignore the conflict. Be direct and get to the bottom of things fast. By acting fast, you avoid the creation of resentment and team members starting to pick their sides.
- Be objective with your support and guidance. Even if it’s clear certain side is ‘wrong’, don’t let the team know you think this way.
- Allow everyone involved in the conflict to have a say. The leader should be the mediator and the one trying to guide the sides to a resolution.
- Create an action plan for solving the issue. Ensure it involves steps both parties must take – you need to be fair and balanced.
- Hold people accountable for following the plan.
You can find more tips for conflict management from a June blog post here at the Talent Culture platform.
The final key driver for developing highly performing teams is to celebrate the success. This should include both informal and formal events. By celebrating success, you acknowledge the hard work and motivate the team to continue working towards achieving all the objectives.
Celebrate when the team reaches a milestone, an individual achieves a personal or professional goal, or when the team receives outside recognition, for example. The celebration doesn’t need to be a huge party with a cake – although this is a treat at times! A simple ‘thank you’, a small box of cookies or an encouraging quote can be enough to show appreciation and motivate the group once more.
With the above tips you can develop a highly performance driven team. Don’t forget to leave your tips and suggestions in the comment section below.