Teams: Building a Successful Team

If you are a leader you will be leading at least one and in reality probably multiple teams.  Building a successful team is a challenge but there are some simple things that you can do to greatly enhance the likelihood of success.

Be clear on the results

If you are to have any chance of building a successful team you need to start by getting clear about the outcome or result that is to be achieved.  The result needs to be specific and written in a language that will be understood by everyone.  Remember that vague specification of results is likely to lead to okay but less than optimal outcomes.

Be clear about the skills you need

A successful team needs to have the right blend of skills to deliver the results.  A soccer team for example needs the right mix of defensive, attacking and creative players.  A business team is no different.  Get clear on the essential skills to deliver the results you want.

Be clear about the attributes that are needed

Skills are important but they are only part of what helps you achieve results.  Attributes or interpersonal qualities are just as important.  They include areas like motivation, influencing, relationship building, personal drive and resilience to name just a few.  Make sure that you don’t lose sight of having the right attributes when building your team.

Bring out the best in everyone

It’s all too easy to pigeon hole people or make up what they can or cannot do based on their job title.  You know the kind of things that people say day in day out like marketing are the only creative folks, accountants won’t take any risks, quality assurance get in the way, human resources are too rules based to name just a few. 

Make a point of finding out what people can bring to the table rather than just guessing what they can or cannot do.

Recognise that it takes time

No team ever leaps immediately from forming to performing.  They go through a series of stages where they move forward, move back, work together, have conflict and hit obstacles.  Accept this and see it as a short term setback for a bigger long term gain.

Bottom Line – Teams can deliver great results.  So what do you need to do differently as a leader to get more success from teams?

About the Author Duncan Brodie

Since 2006 I’ve worked with in excess of 8,000 accountants and professionals in workshops, seminars and one to one helping them land their next jobs and become better leaders, presenters and business partners. Before that I spent 25 years in accountancy climbing the career ladder from Payments Clerk to FD. I’m a CIMA Fellow, Certified Professional Coach and Team Coach Facilitator.

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