Team leadership thoughts (Part 2)
I’ve been extremely fortunate to work for several great leaders during my career. Each of them brought and demonstrated different strengths in their leadership style that made them successful in my view. I’ve identified and captured some of those key strengths, observations and lessons from my experience of a number of them. Some of the aspects link to elements of the Exceptional Team Blueprint, whilst others are more behavioural.
You don’t need to be in a formal leadership position to improve the performance of the teams you’re a member of. You can think about and use many, if not all, of these aspects to help your fellow team members be part of an exceptional team.
My second set of thoughts are in this blog.
Spot potential in individuals
Think beyond the immediate team and business needs and identify potential for growth in individual team members. Work with them and help them to develop so that they can achieve their potential. One of the key roles of a leader is to identify and develop their successors.
Understand and care about individuals
Build an understanding of the members of your team and how they like to work at an individual level. Consider how your preferences and style impacts on others. Adapt your style to make things easier for someone who likes to work in a different way to you.
Make a decision, even if it’s the wrong one. People get more frustrated by a lack of decision-making than by a leader making the wrong decision.
Respect other’s views. Be honest and admit when you’re wrong and be willing to say sorry. Give credit to others when it’s due. Put others first, before yourself.
Be available and approachable for your team members when they need you. Be ready to listen.
Demonstrate the team values
Team members will look to you to demonstrate the values in everything you do. They will model your behaviour. Think about the ‘shadow of the leader’. The ‘shadow’ you cast through your behaviour reflects what you see as important. Recruit team members who align to the team’s values and live the values yourself.
Be true to yourself and don’t pretend or try to be someone you’re not. Behave with integrity. People will see through it if you’re trying to portray an image that isn’t you.
Give honest feedback
Be transparent about the performance of the business, the team and individuals. Give both positive and developmental feedback. Be open, timely and honest with feedback and address problems as they arise.
Continue to develop
Invest in your own development so that you continue to grow at both a personal and professional level. Also invest in the development of your team members.
Effective communication underpins much of these leadership aspects. Communicate effectively and check that you have been heard and understood. Ensure you listen in return.
Be confident and positive
Be confident and believe in who you are and what you are doing otherwise nobody else will. Remain positive and upbeat. Bad things will happen but you always have a choice as to how you react.
Be willing to share leadership
Recognise that team leadership may shift in order to drive and deliver results. Sometimes the formal team leader may not necessarily be the best person to lead on a certain aspect or task. Encourage team members to take a leadership role when appropriate.
Work hard, play hard and have fun
Create a team environment that encourages and rewards effort and hard work, but also ensure that team members enjoy what they do. Generate an atmosphere in which team members enjoy each other’s company at a social level as well as a business level.
If you'd like to arrange to talk about how I could help you build and develop exceptional teams in your business or organisation then please get in touch.
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