How to Build Great Teams

The company’s most vital project of the year somehow defaulted to you. Because you knew it was so important, you assembled a crack team of your top performers to get the job done. With great expectations, you gave them a timeline and turned them loose to do what they do best. A week later you checked on their progress only to discover they’d made no headway whatsoever. In disbelief, you had to ask yourself, how could this have happened?

While your most successful performers may be standouts on their own, when it comes to participating on a team, they may struggle. In order to develop a shared sense of responsibility, your star performers must learn to perform as a team rather than as individuals.

To assist, here are 5 elements of building a successful team.

1st – Create Trust

First and foremost, your team members must trust each other when it comes to accomplishing goals. They must know they can rely on each other’s individual strengths to meet deadlines. Remember, trust is the foundation of a team. Team building activities may seem like a waste of time to some, but these activities allow team members to establish and strengthen trust.

You’ve most likely seen the team building exercise where someone falls backward, and the rest of the team is there to catch him. Try using similar team building exercises to bring your team together as one cohesive entity.

2nd – Create a Shared Vision

Let all team members know why it’s so important to achieve goals and observe timelines. Help them to see the bigger picture for the company, so that everyone

involved knows exactly what’s at stake. Keeping team members in the dark about the company’s vision only leads to frustration, resentment and lack of motivation.

Enlightening team members makes them feel more invested in both the company’s vision, and their shared vision as a team.

3rd – Establish Open Communication

A successful team is able to address problems amongst themselves and keep lines of communication open at all times. To assist, be sure teams have the ability to network and discuss obstacles or changes. If team members are in different locations, be sure to have plans in place for them to communicate.

In addition, schedule regular meetings for all team members to discuss their progress.

4th – Conflict Resolution

Even the most harmonious team, on some occasions, disagrees. In order to address the inevitable, be prepared to resolve conflicts in a fair and expeditious manner. Assess obstacles and allow the team as a whole to decide what best moves a project forward.

Instead of emphasizing what’s right or wrong, focus on the “most viable option” for success. A shared sense of what’s best will serve to strengthen the team.

5th – Establish Shared Incentives

Establish a shared reward system for the entire team for accomplishing their goals. When rewards are contingent upon the entire team’s success, team members feel inspired to help each other. Creating a shared incentive will help to create a shared purpose.

Identifying your top performers is fairly simple. Having them work together as a team may be a bit more challenging.

Use the 5 elements of building a successful team to ensure you get results that meet all of your expectations.

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