Team Building: Ideas For Leaders To Make An Impact & Get Ahead

The changing economy has forced everyone to think differently about a whole wagon full of topics, even things that we thought would never change. For example, if you want to stay competitive in the new marketplace, you're going to have to think differently about how you build your team.

Even if you're not approaching things from a profit perspective, one thing is clear: teams do make the difference. The power that one individual has is multiplied a thousand times when you look at how teams develop.

This guide will focus on building teams in an economy that seems dark and depressing to many. Yet there are some key insights that need to be brought to light, so to speak.

Identify Key Objectives

In order to even begin building a team, you have to identify key objectives. A lot of people try to skip this and go straight to getting people on their team. That's a bad idea, because you will have people that are irritated with having no sense of direction.

As the leader, they’re going to be looking up; to you for ideas on how to move forward. There's something important about this that needs to be understood. Clear direction leads to better teams, because you will lower the amount of time required to get the team up and running.

When deadlines are right around the corner, this is a very critical concept to keep in mind. You cannot just assume that everything is going to be okay merely because you have an idea for a team. It is much more than that.

You see, your team is going to have to work together for a long period of time. If you aren't planning things out, you could end up getting left behind in terms of having things ironed out. Let's move on to the part everyone’s waiting for: actually picking the people that will make up your "dream team".

Identify Key People

Now we come to the subject of selecting the right people. As you might imagine, this may take some time. One mistake that team leaders make is that they wait till the last minute to pick their dream team.

This is a big mistake because you just never know how long it's going to take to properly interview and study how people may interact in a team setting. We say "may" because people can be unpredictable.

It's very common to find someone that is a total rockstar in their field, only to find that they just can't seem to get along with others to the level where your team requires them to be.

This means that you cannot assume that everyone you meet will be a good fit. You're going to have to be selective, and there's nothing wrong with that. Once you have your Key Objectives, you can think about Key People.

Who among the sample population that you're looking at would be the best fit for the position? At this point, a lot of team leaders start thinking in terms of genders or in ethnic backgrounds.

The truth is that you can't worry about the "genetic makeup" of your team from that angle. Some will criticize you for the makeup of your team, but what about the results that they bring to the table? In many situations, results matter more than who is bringing those results to the table.

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Define Incentives...and Give Them Freely

One little secret that gets overlooked by most is that you must give rewards to your team. This keeps them sharer, because nobody wants to feel like they're not appreciated. What you will ultimately find is that the rewards don't have to be necessary large, but they have to be present.

If you know your Key People and your Key Objectives, then it should be easy to come up with incentives. Of course, if you're really stumped, you don't have to feel like it's the end of the world.

Just ask the team what they actually want. Sometimes we want to surprise everyone with how interesting we are, when that's really making things overcomplicated. Asking them is direct, and shows that you can take initiative.

The Road Ahead

Look, it goes without saying that building a team is going to be difficult. Anytime that you agree to work with a wide variety of different people, you’re bound for some conflict at the beginning before things smooth and even out.

There's nothing wrong with tackling things slowly and scaling out as time passes. Your team can be your best asset, as long as you're really willing to work with them. Show them that you are a true leader that has no problem working with them for as long as it takes to get them up to speed.

Are you truly ready for that challenge? Then the tips in this guide will see you through. Remember, though, that they are indeed just general points of advice. Your own situation will be different, so you have to adjust things to fit your needs. Good luck!

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