EFFECTIVE TEAMWORK is a
vital component to attaining
goals in your business. But
just because you have a group
of people working for you
doesn’t mean you have a
team. For example, are your
salespeople a team or just a group? Are
they merely together or are they all facing
the same direction and looking at the same
target? Granted, your staff could team up
and never get the job done. Or, they could
do what brings success: They could gather
themselves together and plan their approach, pool their resources and skills and
communicate with each other effectively
and then you can watch them make that
six-figure sales mark with bravado.
BUILD AN EFFEC TIVE TEAM
Attend to and apply the following 10 elements in order to build an effective team.
To help guide the process, make sure you
have a strong and flexible team leader.
1. Inspiring work settings. Employees should
feel relaxed and comfortable with each
other. Try to remove any tension, boredom
or indifference employees may have about
2. Engaging discussions. During staff meetings or informal chats, encourage everyone to talk about their work, but be
careful not to let one person dominate
3. Clear tasks and goals. When you have
open discussions, everyone knows and accepts the team’s purpose and plans, as well
as your general business goals, which helps
to eliminate separate or hidden agendas.
4. Active listening. Assure that everyone
pays attention to each other’s ideas and
takes them seriously. Avoid distractions by
insisting that staff not privately use their
cell phones or laptops during meetings or
5. Comfortable disagreement. As a team,
employees do best when they approach
conflict as a challenge to be dealt with,
not as something to avoid or magnify. Do
not let unresolvable disagreements block
6. Constructive criticism. Effective teamwork relies on having employees who can
handle criticism from you and other team
members as an opportunity to improve.
Everyone should be frank and supportive,
so no one feels attacked or embarrassed.
7. Decisions by consensus. Employees need
to arrive at true group agreements. Rarely
would you want members to vote formally
with the minority expected to go along.
8. Clear assignments. Once decisions are
made, help team members know and understand their roles and tasks. Make sure
no one is feeling left out or in the dark.
9. Shifting leadership. Depending on the
circumstances, let team members take
turns leading with their ideas, skills, discussions and plans of action.
10. Group assessment. As part of a team, all
employees need to be aware of their goals,
and then frequently stop to examine how
they’re doing. They should all openly discuss problems, changes and solutions.
BE A GREAT LEADER
As the owner or manager, the role of team
leader likely falls on your shoulders – and
it’s not an easy task. When attempting
to build an effective team often there
are barriers which can impede a team’s