Last weekend we decided we wanted to wrap up our maple syrup season on Saturday so that we could spend Easter Sunday together relaxing with our family. To make that happen when the sap had been flying out of the trees for a few days prior, was a major challenge.
We pulled together a team of people that all had a desire and passion to help, and it was incredible what got done in a three day time period. Some people collected sap, others boiled the sap to syrup, others filtered and bottled the syrup, and others cleaned up. Everyone worked in their strength and significantly contributed to the achievement of the goal.
This would have been impossible on my own. The only reason we succeeded in finishing on Saturday was due to incredible teamwork. Teamwork is very important in organization, family, project, or individual success. Building a high performing team will lead to the achievement of great things!
Keys to building a high performing team and teamwork are:
- Common, well articulated and understood purpose and vision
- Leader’s responsibility – Insure that the purpose and vision of the task at hand is developed and well understood by all participants.
- Team members placed in areas of strength
- Leader’s responsibility – Gain an understanding of the strengths, passions, and talents of the team, and assign tasks that play to people’s strengths.
- Team members can clearly relate their work to the achievement of the purpose and vision
- Leader’s responsibility – Clearly articulate to team members the difference their work is making in the success of the team.
- Team members have very clear understanding of what is expected of them
- Leader’s responsibilities – Clearly delineate and explain the specific responsibilities for everyone involved. Train where necessary.
- Team members are allowed to do their best work without being micro-managed
- Leader’s responsibility – Assess the passion and competency of each team member around their roles and lead them appropriately. If they are passionate and competent with their role, allow them to do the work without looking over their shoulder.
- Measure performance and provide feedback to team members on how they are doing
- Leader’s responsibility – Provide timely feedback on performance. Re-direct where necessary.
- Celebrate successes
- Leader’s responsibility – Take time along the journey to celebrate wins. Don’t wait until the end of the project. Celebrate along the way.
Bonus: People that are a part of high performing teams learn to be great leaders by observing what led to high performance.
What are you doing to insure teamwork and high performance on the teams you lead?
From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work. Ephesians 4:16