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Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Between the "year end" and "year start"

Building a Great Team - Ten Easy Ways to Start

It's all about focusing on where the best value in using time lies. Who is the leader of the team and what is your best use of time? Getting to know your own value and appreciating where you add it best is a big, and very productive step.
So, to start at the beginning, here's how...

1/Do Less
One of the most important shifts for you is to appreciate that leading a team is about giving way and letting others get on with it.
2/Communicate Well
Keep in touch regularly. Keep your people informed and listen to them well. Ups and downs - if you do this, they will build their trust in you.
3/Be Interested in the People
By creating a great team remember that they are all individuals too - they are real people who have differing needs from you. Appreciating that differentiates you as an exceptional team leader. There is an I in team!
4/Choose Well
The best time to choose a team is at the start. If you tolerate poor team members it is much, much harder to fix. So choose well. Recruit well. It's the best form of Team Building you can use.
5/Learn Together
This is a concerted effort of co-operative learning - all together, including you - admit your shortfalls and they will support you. Support them and they will grow!
And as part of that learning, review progress regularly; appreciate if someone is struggling and encourage ways to learn and move on. Review the end result too Using what's been learned for the next project.
7/Be Open
As leader you have an important role to make sure that the job gets done. Yet you are allowed to be open with them - to share your concerns and fears. It is OK to be human and within that emotional bond, you will all become a stronger team.
8/Allow Failure
How you handle things when they do go wrong is a vital component in how your team will evolve and how you will evolve as a team leader. The outcome will be positive or more fear and doubt. As Charles Lindbergh said:-
"What kind of man would live where there is no daring. I don't believe in taking foolish chances, but nothing can be accomplished without taking any chance at all"
9/Have Fun
It's OK to have fun. A team leader walks a fine line between over-familiarity and easy business relationships. But it can be done - watch for signals and respond accordingly. At the same time enable laughter and joy. It is a strong bond.
10/Spread the Word
When the team work is over, or if key people move on, rejoice in what they take from the experience with you. Encourage them to use their experience of Team Building with their new people and do it for themselves.
Once you get on a roll and take all these on board, Team Building develops a self-sustaining momentum all of it's own...



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