Invest in Your Team
TEAM – together everyone achieves more. Is this really the case though? Undeveloped teams suffer from diffusion of responsibility and minuscule efforts to achieve team goals. To make sure that your team is firing on all cylinders, it is critical that management is taking proper steps to continually improve the company culture and team environment. Here are 7 valuable tips to improve your team environment, and set your business up for growth.
- Keep an Open Line of Communication: One of the most common problems in the team-oriented workplace is lack of communication. Regardless of where you stand on the company ladder, effective communication skills are vital to the success of any working relationship. Whether you are a college intern employed for the summer, a mid-level administrator, the top sales-person in the office, or the CEO, it is crucial to convey your ideas and opinions efficiently and respectfully. This initiates conversation, fosters growth, and improves office relations.
- Set Goals: Goal-setting is critical for both personal and professional growth within an organization. Doing this creates a motivating force to complete a task, and keeps the team focused. Having long and short term goals gives the employees and company the ability to measure success and growth over a period of time. In the team setting, it is easy to use the team goals and individual’s personal goals to push and motivate one another to achieve them.
- Set Clear Expectations: Be clear and concise with what you expect from your employees, and make sure that you adhere to those standards. This ensures that everyone is on the same page, and nothing is misunderstood. It also leaves little room for slacking off. Working in a team holds individuals more accountable to meeting deadlines and increased quality of work. Like goals, setting clear expectations focuses employees, and established a benchmark for success.
- Allow for Mistakes: Nobody is perfect. Employees often make mistakes due to poor training, miscommunication, and inattention to detail. Luckily for the manager, these are all things that can be fixed! Now, I’m not telling you to let major mistakes fall through the cracks, but give your employees room to fall; this is the time to see how well they can pick themselves up, brush off the dirt, and improve.
- Be Present: Don’t be fooled – There is a major difference between being in attendance and being present. Are you hearing your team, or are you actually listening to them? Are you locked up in the office, or are you working with them? What are you doing to help their growth? As a manager, it is important to spend time working on the ground level with your employees coaching, mentoring, and guiding them. In doing so, you are establishing and improving relationships with them, increasing respect, loyalty, and business growth.
- Take the Ride Together: Like a roller coaster, many companies experience high highs, low lows, and rapid shifts between the two. Everyone encounters positives and negatives in their life and in their careers, so being able to support them through it will improve the environment of the office. Celebrate the successes, but also celebrate the failures. Why celebrate the lows? There is only one direction to go from there – up. Watch how your team responds to bad days, help them recover and watch them grow from there. Ride the wave together.
- Value your Team: The best advice that I can give is to truly value your employees and what they bring to the table for your company. According to a study published by the Harvard Business Review, “Why Top Young Managers Are in a Nonstop Job Hunt” by Monika Hamori, Jie Cao and Burak Koyuncu, your top employees are in a constant job hunt. These eager individuals are constantly thinking of the next step, and what is best for their careers. Demonstrate to your employees how important they are to not only your business, but to you personally. Reward them for a job well done, and appreciate them before someone else does.
So you want to improve your company’s environment but don’t know where to begin? That’s easy. Invest your time into your team. By doing so, it is inevitable that the workplace will be filled with positive energy, high production, a more enjoyable experience, and an increased bottom line. Listen to their opinions and ideas, trust their judgement, and be there to support them. Respect and show loyalty to your team, and they will do the same in return. Employees are the most valuable asset of any company, so invest 110% of yourself into your team, not because you have to, but because they deserve it.