Top Ten Tips... How to Build a Successful Team
You know you have a good team when everything clicks – the balance of skills, a shared ethic and ambitions. A good team will support and mentor each other rather than be competitive, be creative and forward thinking and will know how to engage and communicate well.
If your workplace needs a revamp, then read our Top Ten Tips for building a successful team.
1. Share your ambitions
Whether your company is big or small, you should have some strategic objectives which outline your ambitions. You may also have a mission to guide you and a set of values unique to you which show how you will work towards achieving your goals. You should ideally engage with your team to develop your values so they feel a sense of ownership and pride in what they’re working towards.
2. Get your work/life balance right
We spend the majority of our lives at work but balancing work life with busy families, hobbies and holidays can be tricky. Many of us can feel torn between the pressures of our work and home lives, particularly as technology now means workers are easily accessible around the clock. Employers are more likely to have a happy workforce if they allow, within reason, flexible working for colleagues to deal with family issues. Allowing staff to work from home or to use their lieu time in emergencies, for example, will help everyone feel more relaxed and happier at work, knowing if something does crop up, they have your support.
3. Promote creative thinking
Even if your industry isn’t typically known for it’s creativity, there will still be opportunities to use your imagination to create new and exciting ways of doing things. We spend most of our daily lives at work surrounded by the same people, equipment and office space. This environment doesn’t lend itself well to thinking creatively. Why not arrange a team away day where you can have more informal and creative discussions about your roles, department or business as a whole?
4. Communication is key
Good communication skills are key when it comes to promoting a high performance team. A lack of communication and engagement can easily lead to a lack of unity and conflict. Good communication should motivate and inspire your teams as well as inform them. Think about the ways you typically talk to each other at work – would another way work better? You could introduce daily team meetings, staff email bulletins, drop-in sessions with managers or even no- email Mondays!
5. Inspire them
One of the best ways of creating a team which works well together is to lead by example. Taking charge, being positive and encouraging ambitions and continual professional development will hopefully rub off on your colleagues and inspire them to change their mind-set. People are also more likely to perform well if they’re working on something they believe in. You need to check that any new employees also have the right mind-set and are a good fit for the existing culture of your business so they don’t become disengaged.
6. Introduce a Code of Conduct
A Code of Conduct is a firm way of showcasing how you expect your employees to reflect your company’s core values and principles. It sets out the parameters of what is acceptable behaviour and what isn’t. A well written code should always have your employees at its heart. It should be clear and accessible in the language used and way it’s written. Avoid using industry jargon and overly complicated sentences.
7. Support your colleagues
By having regular appraisals and team briefings you can gather useful information from your colleagues about what they want to achieve and how you can help them do this. Rather than seeing a gap in someone’s skill set as a weakness, you should champion their ambitions to develop and improve. For example, could you provide opportunities for them to attend a training course, to work-shadow a more experienced colleague or allow time out to attend networking events. Providing a supportive environment will help you understand your team’s strengths and weaknesses.
8. Reward your colleagues
The achievement could be for something big or small but it’s always a good idea to take the time to thank colleagues who have performed well.
You could show your appreciation to colleagues who have done a good job by having an ‘employee/team of the month’ award or a financial or extra annual leave bonus. Make sure you reward all staff for their good work, not just the top performers or those at higher levels.
9. Make time for each other
Taking a break from work can make us feel happier and more productive for the rest of our shift. So, if you’re not taking a lunch break – down your tools and start now. We all need to eat, so why not do it together? You might make new friends within your team, discover a delicious new sandwich shop or build relationships with the partners and clients you work with in a more informal setting.
10. Trust your team’s instincts
Colleagues who feel they have autonomy over their jobs and who are allowed the freedom to make day-to-day important decisions can really feel appreciated because they know their boss trusts them to get on with the job in hand. Being micro-managed and having to check every detail with your boss can be demoralising and disheartening if you feel you’re capable and confident to do it yourself. Trusting in their skills and instincts will make them feel their judgement is appreciated.
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