How to be an even better leader than you already are (& increase team performance in the process)
For some of us it happened quick, for some it took time to grow into it, and others never thought they would be one until they were...
We are talking about becoming a leader. The head of a team. The manager of a workforce.
Business owners usually get thrown into the leadership role. They have this great idea for a new company, it takes off, and from one day to the next (at least seemingly) they have a whole team in place that they are supposed to lead.
But… leading a team isn’t that easy, is it?
What might be easy is getting the team performing tasks and getting somewhat by. However, what might take some effort is creating the overachieving, motivated, ‘coming up with own ideas’ team that business owners envisioned once they knew the company was going to be successful.
Luckily enough, being a great leader isn’t something that you have to be born with but a set of skills that can be acquired and practiced. Sure - for some it might come as more natural than others, but becoming a great leader is possible for everyone. What aspiring leaders need to understand is that the way to get there is through hard and focused work.
Becoming A Better and Effective Leader: 3 Shifts to Making An Impact on Your Team’s Performance
There are 101 things you can do to become a better leader: from being more logical, to becoming exemplary, to having more team building exercises... Over the next few minutes you will read about 3 important shifts that will impact your team’s performance for the better and, therefore, create better efficiency, motivation, and results.
1. Give and Acknowledge Ownership
Randomly distributing tasks to get them off your to do list sounds easy, but it is not efficient nor proper at all. In contrast, actively giving work and distributing the ownership of it to specific team members dramatically improves the quality of the end results. It will also pave the way for you to hold them accountable, actively track results, and understand their strengths and weaknesses.
In allowing for a sense of ownership, you will also be allowing them to share their point of view on the subject matter (however big or small it might be), make their own decisions, and bring up their own ideas. This will create a sense of responsibility and a feeling of contribution to the goals of the company, which then boosters the self-esteem of the person within your organization.
In order for this shift to work you need to be sure you are sharing your vision, your goals for the company, and actively integrate your team members into your perspective. Strive to make your team members understand how their contribution in the team forms part of the bigger picture.
2. Become a Great Communicator
Communication is key in almost any area of life. This certainly holds true for your team communication.
Poor team communication not only leads to inefficiency but also to businesses failing as information may fall through the cracks and get lost. In order to prevent this from happening, you need to become a great observer and listener. Qualities of a great leader are not only their own communication skills as a speaker but especially as a listener.
A good leader is someone who sees when things start to turn before they go wrong, someone who is able to ‘read’ the nuances of conversations, and as a response to these react well to the different situations and personalities within the team.
If you feel like team communication is the biggest issue (stealing you time and killing money) make sure to check out this post about two simple shifts to crack your team’s communication
3. Give Credit Where Credit Belongs
Of course everyone’s productivity and efficiency is boosted differently, but, simply said, we all thrive off of positive affirmation and being acknowledged for our efforts. A simple “thank you” or enthusiastic “awesome work!” goes a long way.
This is especially true in bigger corporates, where it is not uncommon to see leadership take credit for the work of others. This shouldn’t be the case in your company. Always give credit where it’s due.
“It is amazing how much can be accomplished if no one cares who gets the credit.”
- John Wooden
Being egoless and generous with your praise fosters a healthy work culture and inspires others to give their best, which in turn boosts productivity in the workplace. This can be more than just verbal praise. Think about performance based rewards or incentive programs! People sure get motivated to give their best when there is a reason to do so. Still, this doesn't solely have to be a monetary one. Other options may include time off, paid vacation, vouchers to gyms, etc.
So there we go! Implementing these 3 team management strategies and becoming aware of your leadership style, what you pay attention to, and what your team needs will heavily impact your team and team’s performance. Are you ready to brush up on your leadership skills? What is the strategy you would want to try first with your team?