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How to build successful teams

project managerWhether you are a manager of any type of programmer, project or company, a team leader, or the owner of a company there are a few ways to ensure that you have a successful team working under you.

1.  Know who you are as a leader

As a project manager/programme manager and team leader you need to know yourself, your work style and your leadership style. Also, you need to know how your team reacts to you; do they respond well? Does your team accept your leadership techniques? Do they accept you as leader?

You need to take action, hold yourself accountable for your actions, and change the way that you do things if it does not work for your team.

2.  Get to know your team.

Taking time to get to know your team will not only help maximise performance and results, but it will help build a bond between you and the team members. You need to understand the needs of your team, and care about their needs – then you will be able to help them. By getting to know your team you will know their strengths and weaknesses, what each person can bring to the table, and how best to deal with each individual.

Taking time to get to know your team means that you have invested time in them and will therefore make them more willing to invest time in their work.

A great way to get to know your team is through “out of the office” team building activities. Adventurous types of team building activities include; paintball, raft building, and quad biking. Alternatively the team can get together for a cocktail making competition or “braai-off”. One could even host some type of game show event for the team to participate in.

3.  Define roles

Think of your team as a puzzle where each member is a puzzle piece that can be used differently. Each member has his/her own responsibility, but they are interconnected and dependent on one another. It is important to know each individual’s talent and set their roles according to their abilities.

4.  Acknowledge and reward

People love it when their hard work doesn’t go unnoticed – so be the leader that notices. Take time to give team members feedback on their performance; it is key to assuring that everyone is on track. Do not only give feedback when things go wrong, but give accolades where they are due. People tend to have greater work satisfaction when their hard work is acknowledged and they feel appreciated – this inspires them to work harder.  Feedback should always be constructive and genuine to build mutual respect within a team.

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