As any successful business leader knows, the success of their business depends on the synergies that they create among their team members, and that dream teams are not built based on theory and concepts but through application and doing.
Creating a dream team for your business requires strategies that go beyond collecting information and writing the right job description.
Seminars, competency training, reading books and watching videos are all helpful but as the old adage goes “actions speak louder than words”. It’s true.
So being able to perform tasks in the controlled environment of a training room is not the same as applying them in the workplace in real life.
And environment is one of the key factors that influences your team’s ability to gel together and succeed.
In the 1980s crazy stories about team environments in Silicone Valley designed to create the most productive and creative thinking spaces were filmed and shown on the nightly news. As exciting and glamorous as these workplaces looked, the reality is that most modern businesses are unable to go to town with an Interior Designer and build sand pits in the tea-room.
The environment your team needs isn’t about wacky bright colored paint on the walls and a few bean bags. It’s about matching the needs of your team for the project they are focused on with a space furnished in a way that best matches that need.
There’s no point in having a clean and fancy office room if your team needs to be working in a workshop with an engine bay, or putting them somewhere with a coffee table and sofas when they need to be at drafting tables with great lighting.
With the right room and furnishings you can move on to considering beliefs and how to foster the right attitude.
People’s behaviour is mostly determined by their beliefs about themselves and their environment, so in fostering your staff to form a dream team means taking care to provide the right kind of environment that will encourage the type of team you want to have.
There are a whole range of dynamics to consider here, like guidelines or an example set by the leader on how people are to speak to each other in the team. Deciding on whether the team can further break down into smaller internal teams or not, whether there is a dress code, is there a hierarchy within the team, how responsibilities and accountabilities are managed and all those thousands of other human interactions that can cause friction.
Ideally you want every single individual within your team to have respect for themselves and for each and every other member of the team if you want to have any hope of building a dream team.
Not only do team members need to feel respected for their skills, they will also want to have a sense that they can contribute to the team environment without fear of negative repercussions, judgement or any other form of discrimination… and do it each and everyday.
Achieving this means giving your team the right equipment, authority, and policies to be effective, efficient and able to expand. They need to feel sure that they have all the parameters and metrics that their efforts are to be assessed against up front so that they can guide themselves into creating successful results over and over again.
The one most sure way of cutting down the confidence of your team is to, at the final assessment phase of their project, pull out a whole new set of benchmarks that you assess their results against that they will never be able to pass. Not only will they think that they have been treated unfairly, it’s likely to create divisions within the team to the extent that they will no longer be able to work together again as an effective unit.
So if you’ve already got a team in the early forming stages, ask them if they think there are factors in their environment which could be improved to help them be more efficient, productive or happy.
Then facilitate the change needed in the environment to make it happen and ensure that you keep your communication with the team and within the team open, unemotional and honest to foster trust and results.