Three Ways to Create Team Success in 2010

2009 is now a memory and organizations are focused on what the coming year will hold.  And while New Year’s resolutions are popular in our culture, I believe they also have a place in the business world.

So what are the New Year’s goals for your organization?

Every organization would quickly say they want to be successful.  However, it is important to note that success is only achieved through intentional efforts.

So, as you begin executing goals in the coming weeks, here are few intentional actions that will ensure your success:

1.  Create Role Clarity
Does every member of your team have a clear understanding of their role?  And better yet, do they understand everyone else’s role on the team?

Too often tasks remain undone, not from lack of effort but from false assumptions that someone else is taking care of it.  Consider interrupting the normal conversations that often occur in a meeting and spend some time ensuring everyone knows what they have been tasked to do and how individual roles link to one another.

2.  Clarify Authority
Unfortunately, many teams stop just short of completely defining the most important aspect of a role – what authority does each person have?  As the leader, how much empowerment do your team members have? And do they know it?  A power vacuum is created when the individuals on the team lack a clear understanding of who and how decisions are made.

3.  Close the Gaps
In the absence of information, people make up their own “truth”.  As the leader, your role is simple: communicate progress to the goal.  So what does that mean?

You must take advantage of every opportunity to talk about your performance.  Are you hitting milestones?  What gaps need to be addressed?  Do any individual team members need assistance?  Are the team’s activities being communicated to other stakeholders?  What barriers do you need to remove?  Are you praising success?

Answering these questions will reduce ambiguity and let’s face it:  you will never be accused of communicating too much.

Role definition, clear authority and communication:  three actions that distinguish winning teams.  So as we anticipate the ringing in of a new year, I wish you a year of success…a year of intentional success.

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