A group consists of many different kinds of people all possessing a valuable skill. To facilitate the effective development of a work group, the leader must understand his or her role. If the leader performs his or her job properly, the team produces well and become an efficient part of the company. The following tips will not only help you with team management, they will also help you to improve your leadership skills.
Identify a mentor
Assess your abilities as a leader and determine your strengths and weaknesses. Then find a mentor who possesses the skills you desire. Consider choosing someone who is strong in the areas where you are weak. Your mentor can help you with questions or problems that you may have regarding your team.
The best leaders are excellent listeners and the most effective teams are strong communicators. In addition, when the group needs to speak as one entity to another department or entities outside the company, the leader must step up and be the spokesperson. The leader understands the details of the group’s operation, and needs to be able to speak on behalf of the team when necessary.
One of the more difficult parts of being a leader is resolving group conflicts while trying to facilitate team development. Sometimes conflict can be good because it can encourage team members to improve their skills and contribute more to the team’s success. Other times, conflict can be damaging and threaten the successful development of the team. It is the leader’s role to monitor conflict and determine when it is time to step in and mediate. Remember, competition can kill collaboration. If you want the team to work together, you need to be sure you do not single out employee’s efforts too much. Instead look at team performance as a whole.
An effective team leader is honest and open with his team members. Establish team goals for the month, either individually or as a group. It is essential that you ensure everyone clearly understands the goals and objectives. Offer to clarify if there is any confusion.
Give positive feedback when you observe any step in the right direction. Immediate praise after observing behavior corresponding with goals will reinforce goals and expectations, and help to maintain positive behavior. Also, empowering the team to contribute ideas can build strong cohesion among the group. It’s a fact that the more important your employees are made to feel, the more pride they’re likely to take in their daily duties and achievements.
Teamwork is something that is nurtured and developed with a cooperative effort between the group and manager. An effective team leader is confident in his abilities, as well as confident in the abilities of his team members. The best leader grows on the job and earns the right to lead by coming to understand the role, the responsibilities, the requirements and the people. With the above tips in mind, you are well on your way to improving your leadership and team management skills.