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Making Your Good Performing Team a High Performing Team

In previous blogs, we’ve discussed the components of a successful team, and today we’d like to delve further into the subject. You probably already have a strong team that performs well, but today’s environment requires you to deliver more, on a faster timeline, and with fewer resources. Is your team thriving under these conditions? If not, your best option is to transform your existing satisfactory team into a high performing team.

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Don’t know where to begin? Simply put, you will have to shake things up. In many organizations, team members go about doing things the old way. They get good results but don’t typically improve efficiency. It is up to you, as their leader, to change the status quo. To do so, look at the following key areas:

  • Process – Are there processes that have taken on a life of their own? Have they outlived their usefulness? Try to scale back and make your processes as simple as possible while still getting the job done.
  • Competencies – What skills does your team have? Are there gaps between what is needed and what is available? Assess the team to determine gaps and offer training to help close them.
  • Leadership – Determine your team’s de facto leader day to day. Is this person a manager or a leader? In today’s complex environment, it is not good enough to simply manage. A leader is willing to roll up her sleeves and work side by side with her team. Leaders motivate. They stir up excitement and encourage compliance through trust and respect. With your managers, solicit the opinions of those working in the trenches. Ask them how your team can function better and how you could be delivering solid solutions to your organization. You will find passionate individuals who intuitively know the right things to do. They will be more than happy to tell you how to get more done.
  • Change – Your team looks to you to set the organization’s direction.
    * Be clear. Let them know how you define a High Performing Team.
    * Give them a purpose. Explain why it is important to make changes and kick it up a notch.
    * Lay out your plan. Communicate the immediate and near term changes you plan to make.
    * Let them know their part. Each member of your team should understand what is expected as they support and execute the plan.

Change is the fastest way to create excitement. See who adapts and wants to move forward with you. In addition to developing a high performing team, you just may find your new generation of leaders.

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