Learn and understand the difference between an average team and a high performing team. Get insights on how to build a winning team for your company
The definition of a high performing team varies, but the concept behind it is the same everywhere - a group of individuals that achieve goals together. Leaders strive to create such teams within their companies as they are the key to business growth. But most find it challenging to do. This raises the question, how do you build a winning team?
Successful leaders may say hiring the best talents is the best way to build a winning team. While hiring right is a key aspect of it, it takes more than that to build a winning team. Leaders have to play a more hands-on role to make the talents work together. Before going into the details of how to build a winning team, let us first look at the qualities of a winning team.
What are the qualities of a winning team?
Every winning team possesses something in common that sets them apart from any other team. These qualities are:
- Embrace change: For a company to realize its long-term goals, there is a need for it to change its business approach constantly. Hence, one distinguishing quality of a winning team is that members understand and are comfortable with changes. For instance, with the sudden shift to remote work because of the outbreak, a winning team will find it easier to adapt to the change.
In addition, members of a winning team strive to transform the status quo of how things are done in pursuit of better outcomes.
- Openness: Winning teams have a strong feedback culture. Every member knows how to give and receive feedback. As a result, they are open and direct with each other when communicating. The members also understand that feedback is not personal and try to work on doing better without becoming sentimental.
- Excel outside the team: Another quality of a winning team is that members excel after leaving the team. They set up successful businesses or take up higher roles in another company. An example of this is the core team at PayPal known as “The PayPal Mafia.” After members of this team left the group, they created the likes of YouTube, LinkedIn, Tesla, etc.
- Organized: A winning team is a coordinated unit. The members are always on the same page by means of frequent communication or collaborative technology. They work together to produce regular upgrades of their products and usually meet up to compare data for better efficiency.
What are the steps to build a high performing team?
5 steps to build a high performing team
1Have a definite vision
3Cultivate a team culture
4Set the example
5Adopt the right technology
Step 1: Have a definite vision
The first step to building a winning team is to a clear vision. As a leader, you need to have a specific vision, perhaps a set of goals or aims; you want to achieve in the long run. It should be simple and easy to communicate. That way, you can inspire people to join you.
Not having a clear vision will lead to confusion not only on the leader’s part but also on that of the future team members as their work depends on the leader’s vision.
Step 2: Onboard properly
Next, you help the team members understand that vision by explaining the details to them. Properly onboarding the members is the best way to do this. Let each member know the reason behind your vision and tell them the role they are to play in helping the team achieve it. This will be vital to the team’s eventual success as members grow.
Step 3: Cultivate a team culture
Every team has a culture - certain behaviors that are encouraged and discouraged among members. Taking a laissez-faire approach to the creation of your team culture will lead to the emergence of unhealthy team culture. It is up to the leader to choose a culture that will help the team members function better.
Winning teams have a culture of feedback. Adopting this culture into your team will help your members be open with each other. Team members will not hesitate to give feedback and will have a positive outlook towards receiving feedback. Having a culture of feedback will also help ensure your team continues to communicate efficiently.
Step 4: Set the example
It is of great importance that team leaders set the tone and model for the rest of the members to follow. This means as a leader, hold yourself accountable to inspire your employees to do the same with themselves. Actions such as not owning up to one’s mistake or stealing credit for the team’s accomplishment are detrimental to the success of a team.
Step 5: Adopt the right technology
In a small team, it is easy for the leader and members to improvise. But as the team grows in size and vision, there is a need to integrate technology into the operations to make it easier to run the company. For instance, in a company of 20 employees, HR can make use of spreadsheets. However, when the team reaches 500, a digital solution in the form of an HRM software is essential to the smooth running of operations.
Building a winning team is essential to the growth of a business. It is more critical now as businesses face uncertainties about the future. Leaders need to know and apply the method of building a winning team so they will not only excel and overcome the business challenges of today but that of the future.