When it comes to team performance, it is more than just setting guidelines and expecting results. Instead, leaders must become a strong part of the team with knowledge in collaborative workforce development. This demonstrates you are invested in the success of your employees. What to do is avoid being a tyrant and instead become a true team leader.
Today, we will talk about the difference between being an overbearing boss and a trustworthy team leader. You also learn how to turn things around to create a happier team and a more successful business.
Lead by example to improve team performance
We hear the phrase, lead by example, all of the time and it is true. In order to ensure your employees take you seriously and show pride in their work, they must see that you demonstrate the same amount of care that you expect of them. This is especially important if you are a working lead or step in when your team is shorthanded.
Let’s say you work in customer service and you answer a call. If you instruct your employees to properly greet the customer, show empathy, and compliment the product, but you don’t do that when you answer the phone, then the impact is negative. Your team realizes you don’t practice what you preach. They think, “He’s not complimenting the product, and he is the manager. Why should I do it?” You never want to find yourself in that situation.
In addition to leading by example, it is also important to build and demonstrate camaraderie as a function of high performance collaborative workforce development. Showing that you are a part of the team and that you and your staff share mutual respect is essential for positive team performance. If you ask your employees to work an extra shift, but you don’t show up that day to provide encouragement and support, they might lose respect and trust in you.
Camaraderie also means that you include your team members in important decision-making conversations. For example, you ask for their input when you are tasked with improving a process. When you prove that their opinions are important, they are willing to provide their insight. They also show their appreciation through their work.
Be There For Your Team
The distinction between overbearing bosses and true leaders is how you react when problems arise. An employee calls in sick. Family problems consume their attention. It is easy to be angry with the employee. You require they come to work sick, you order them to man-up or threaten to write them up for reduced performance. Instead of whipping them in shape you push them away further. Quite frankly. many quit under this type of treatment.
Instead, a good leader demonstrates empathy and tries to understand other people’s emotions. If you make an attempt to listen, show support, and give the employee the time they need to communicate concerns, then they understand you view them as human beings with thoughts and feelings.
Demonstrate concern for team member mental and emotional health
If you require your team to come in when they are sick and then overwork them, you contribute to employee burnout. You also add to decreased engagement and performance and increased mistakes, When employees consider you careless or disrespectful, there is a direct correlation to increased sick days and turnover.
In addition to realistic team performance, a positive approach and attitude builds trust that employees can come to you when they are dealing with stress or issues outside of work.
Essentially, you can normalize talking about mental health in the office. Although respecting your employee’s boundaries is important, you can at least be there to listen. Provide a private space where the employee can talk about their concerns. When you respond, be aware of your language and don’t use any insensitive terms. Then, provide a resource where your employee can get the help that they need.
If you have a relationships like this with your staff, then you are on the way to strong team performance.
Focus On Training And Rewards
Finally, it is essential that you take the time to train your employees in group process skills as a team leader. It is important that team members understand their daily goals and the ability to achieve them. If the only training you offer is during their initial employee orientation, you have dropped the ball. Exceptional team leaders continue to develop their team members. They meet consistently with individual team members. They ask how the employee is doing, inquire if employees want additional training and continue to help them improve their performance until they reach the desired results. This keeps group process and collaborative workforce development on track and moving forward.
A good leader offers an open-door policy so employees can come to you when they have questions or concerns. If you don’t know the answer, that’s okay. However, you should advise the employee that you will find the answer and get back to them. Then make sure that you follow through on that promise.
When your employees reach a goal or go above and beyond to help their colleagues, make it a point to recognize and reward their efforts. You will be amazed at how giving kudos to your team or pulling an employee aside to express your appreciation can favorably impact an employee’s mood and outlook. After positive reinforcement, the employee knows how to repeat their success. When you complement the team, team members also know how to repeat their success and strive to do more. Your team’s performance improves because they know you care, you are invested in their success, and you continue to develop them. Your leadership can have a positive impact on team performance, staff pride and employee work.
Care to dig deeper into this conversation?
- A good article that explains learning circles for training transference can be found here: A system approach to training that sticks
- Complimentary 30 minute on demand webinar on the TIGERS 6 Principles
- Turnkey training with repeatable resources and templates for coaches, consultants and managers for facilitating conversations with groups of employees on the behaviors that build effective teams and the behaviors that cause predictable problems.
Copyright TIGERS Success Series, Inc. by Dianne Crampton
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