Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Leadership and knowing your team

How well do you know your team? When was the last time you spent some quality time with each member? Do you know and understand their motivations, their anxieties, their goals.

As the team leader it's time to put a plan together or revisit your previous plan.
Work through your schedule and find some times you can set aside to spend with each member of your team. Some people like to do this in a formal setting others may do it over lunch, the how and when is not important. What is important is to focus solely on the person and get to know them more fully.

Do you know:

  • Why they work for your team,
  • What they want to achieve this year,
  • Where do they think they will be in two years time,
  • Do they aspire to take your position when you get your promotion,
  • What are their ideas to improve the workplace, and
  • Do they expect a raise this year.

As a leader it is our responsibility to counsel and mentor our team members, when we know each member better we can understand why we all act the way we do. We can make our position known. While we may not have things to say they want to hear if you deliver the message in an honest and supported way, at least it's all out in the open and neither party is set-up for a surprise.

Together you and each team member can set out your individual and combined goals and plot your course to achieve them. Now with a good understanding of what makes each of us tick, you can see what will motivate and what will deter all your members.

If you've taken the time to do this, how did it go? I know it's always worked for me.

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