In many business environments, team success is essential for financial growth. Small-, medium-, and large-sized task forces should be responsible for specific tasks, handling them efficiently, quickly, and accurately. These task forces are generally collaborative but require management and leadership as well. When teams work together, they must assign individualized tasks properly, manage time well, and collaborate without argument. In any case, maximizing the performance success of teams maximizes the overall success of a business, so leadership representatives need to know how to do just that.
Improving Team Performance
There are several keys to success to keep in mind when forming or managing a team. Great leadership is one of the most important factors that will contribute to the success of a team on any given project. When assigning tasks, C-suite executives need to communicate effectively with team members, while supervisors should carefully consider the skills and experiences of each team member. They should explain the requirements clearly, lay out deadlines, and make themselves available for questions as well.
Leading by Example
It is also important for people in management roles to lead by example. For example, if managers want team members working on a project to manage their time more effectively, it is imperative to set a good example by showing that they possess the time management skills that they require of others. If they want to encourage good communication skills within teams, they should communicate effectively with those teams and their team members. If they want their employees to utilize problem-solving strategies while working on projects, they should demonstrate problem-solving strategies themselves, serving as a good example. And so on.
Leadership through Collaboration
It is also important for leaders to collaborate with team members to maximize team effectiveness. This needs to occur on both the team level and the managerial level. Lower-level team leaders need to collaborate effectively with their team members. They should listen to new ideas, respond receptively to feedback, answer questions, and employ new ideas or methods where necessary.
Leaders on the managerial level also need to approach collaborative opportunities with an open mind. Team projects in the workplace are most successful when this collaboration occurs effectively on all levels.
Communicating between Leadership and Employees
Communication between leadership and employees is essential for team success in the workplace as well. Lower-level team leaders need to communicate effectively with team members when assigning specific tasks, providing feedback, and communicating deadlines. Higher-level team leaders need to communicate deadlines, project requirements, and questions for team members effectively. Keeping the lines of communication open also sets a good example for communicating within teams.
When people in leadership roles set a positive example for calm and effective interactions, team members often mirror this behavior and incorporate these communication skills into their daily interactions. Calm and effective message relay is not just important during meetings in the boardroom, but it is also important when communicating via memo, e-mail, and other nonverbal methods, as ineffective communication in this area can cause a disconnect in the workplace.
Continued Education for Both Leadership and Employees
For the best success in the workplace, team members at every level must take advantage of available continuing education opportunities. Ideally, these should be coordinated and offered by upper management or human resources so employees are not expected to seek these opportunities elsewhere. According to the recent Gallup report How Millennials Want to Work and Live, nearly 60 percent of millennials rated growth opportunities as extremely important. More and more, employees expect the companies they work for to not only provide wages but also help them improve professionally.
If there are opportunity areas where teams can improve, managers should assess and make suggestions to improve skills in those specific areas. For example, if managers find that team members are having issues with time management, it might be a good idea to host an in-house seminar or training session on this topic. While oversight from upper management and HR is good, it is not a substitute for self-evaluation; employees should always take advantage of available professional opportunities on their own time. When everyone takes advantage of learning opportunities both in and out of the workplace, the work environment and overall productivity will improve.
Conclusions on Improving Performance of Teams through Leadership
There are many effective ways to improve the performance of a team in the workplace. Generally, the most effective leaders create the most positive work environments. Always remember that both individual and team achievements are vital to business success. The best leaders encourage personal and professional growth, and they understand that a happy workforce is essential to a change-making business.