How to Build a Team as a Leader
There are many attributes that make a successful business, many of which are uncontrollable; think the economy, your competitors, and your customers. However, there are a few that are controllable, that can directly influence the success of a company or business department; one of which is building an effective team.
As a leader, it’s your responsibility to hire the right people, develop those people and establish their place within your team, encourage and motivate them to drive performance, and continue to celebrate the good work achieved as a team. These are just a few key factors in building and developing a valuable team. In this article, we’ll take a deeper look at ten steps on how to build a team as a leader, and not just any team, a successful one.
Our steps to building a strong team include:
Establishing your own leadership style
Finding and hiring individuals you can trust
Establishing the company and team culture
Defining your teams’ roles and responsibilities
Foster openness, trust, respect, and diversity
Encouraging and motivating your team
Communicating and seeking feedback
Celebrating wins and rewarding good work
Investing in coaching
Establish your own leadership style
Before you can build a successful team, identifying your own leadership and working style is a must. Why? Well, ensuring you’re aware of how you work, how you’ll need your team to work with you, and how you can use your strengths to develop your team continuously is really important to building a successful team. This step is all about self-awareness.
Find & hire individuals you trust
This step might sound simple, but the key to an effective team is the people, right? You can put the most amount of effort into building and developing a team structure as a leader, but if you don’t have the right people for the job, it won’t be as effective or productive as you’d like it to be.
As a leader building a team, you need to trust the people you work with; if a team continuously fails to meet targets, performance goals, and client needs, you take a lot of responsibility – so do your research! Think, what does a successful team look like? Then find and hire the right people, even if it means having a more rigid hiring process. Look for self-starters, collaborators, autonomous workers, and individuals that are going to fit into the team culture you’d like to create.
Establish the company & team culture
Culture within any team, department, or company is key to success. According to one study, positive practices at work produce positive effects on employees; increased satisfaction with work, increased wellbeing, reduced intentions to quit, and reduced conflict within the workplace are just some examples. What’s more, 77% of employees agree a strong culture allows them to do their best work, while 76% see the effects on productivity and efficiency. So, establishing a strong, positive team culture and establishing what is expected from your new hires is likely to have a really strong impact on the success of your new team overall.
Define your team's role & responsibilities
Once you’ve got the team in place, make sure you define with clarity what your team members’ roles and responsibilities are. In doing so, you’ll give them a sense of ownership, allowing them to set clear goals, know how they fit into the team, and understand your expectations of them. Make sure to play to people’s strengths to gain the most value and get the most out of your team.
Foster openness, trust, respect, and diversity
Building a strong team means fostering an environment where your team has the opportunity to become strong. This comes with an open environment, where employees feel valued, trusted, and respected. You could adopt this environment by engaging in active listening, acting on feedback, showing appreciation, and empowering your employees with your trust. Help your employees feel like they belong by embracing diversity and differences – the feeling of belonging has been linked to a 56% increase in job performance and will likely transfer into greater engagement, collaboration, and teamwork.
Don’t knock the simplest things. Without organization at the top, you’ll see this lack of organization trickle down into your team, and performance, productivity, and success will be impacted. Keep on top of workflows, have regular meetings with your team, and plan ahead and be ready for challenges or delays.
Encourage & motivate
It might sound cliché but be the leader you’d want to follow. Encourage and motivate your team both through positive reinforcement and by becoming an influential figure that others aspire to be.
Encourage a growth mindset and inspire your employees to autonomously improve themselves through hard work. This is going to boost engagement, and subsequently productivity, whilst also motivating them to achieve their goals and develop as an individual, all of which are aspects that will positively impact on your teams’ overall success.
Communicate and seek feedback
Open dialogue: a key aspect to workplace success and therefore to building a successful and effective team as a leader. Establish an environment of trust and transparency by encouraging communication and feedback. As a leader, take on that feedback – actively listen to your team, see how you can change things for the better, give feedback too, and look to understand what your team needs – after all, they’re providing you with all the hard work!
Celebrate wins and reward good work
The workplace can be incredibly fast-paced and it’s often difficult to stop and look at people’s successes, but celebrating the little wins and rewarding good work is not only linked to encouragement but is key to boosting a sense of appreciation.
Invest in coaching
Building a team as a leader is a big commitment, and it can become an overwhelming experience. So, invest in coaching to help guide you; EZRA’s leadership coaching solution provides you with support to ease the pressures of leadership, while personalized coaches can help you understand how to build a team at work.
Developing your new team can also be a difficult procedure, but investing in coaching for your whole team can help to aid this challenge and can lead to incredible successes, both as a team and for the individuals within it.