Keep your team on target:
Teams can easily get sidetracked for a variety of reasons. Their sense of direction may weaken as a result of your leadership style, the team's internal working or conflicts that may exist within the team.
Find out what the problem may be:
As soon as you realize there is a problem, deal with it immediately. The most important piece is to identify the problem. In many cases the problem could exist for the following reasons:
· Misunderstood or ill-defined goals
· Lack of focus on team dynamics
· Lack of communication among team members
· Lack of commitment to the team’s performance
· Gaps in critical skills
· Unresolved internal conflict
· External misunderstanding, hostility, or indifference from other groups
Resolving the problem:
Don’t avoid or deny the problem by hoping that it will simply just go away. Problems and issues have a way of hanging around and growing larger and more annoying if ignored.
Often there are simple things that you can do to help a team to get back on track. For example:
· Lead a discussion the reviews the team’s purpose, approach and performance goals.
· Establish goals and a course of action to achieving them
· Share new information and a different perspective.
· Share outside information and data via benchmarks and case studies.
· Remember to tell your tell team how much you appreciate their efforts and their work. Often a simple “Thank You” is all that team members may need from their leader or a pat on the back.
The art of leading a team is to persuade a person who is unmotivated – which can range from a community outreach manager, and executive director to an administrative assistant – to do his or her job. As the team leader, you must always show appreciation. Remember to thank people for the simplest things like opening a door. How many of us have worked for and with people who never uttered words “Thank You”, but instead focused on what you weren’t doing according their non-verbal expectations of you?
One of the lessons I learned early in my career was that leading a strong and successful team takes an entire team’s effort in constructing a positive relationship.