Leading is a tough role. The reason individuals make it into a leadership role is because they are very good at what they do. However, effectively facilitating and orchestrating every leadership aspect is challenging. For example, leaders may set out with the intention of building a team that delivers. Many succeed, while others struggle. So how can you, as a leader, build a team that delivers?
Stop and think before you hire
When you have a role to fill, it is really easy to rush into the process of getting someone hired. However, if you think about it, recruiting someone is one of the biggest investment decisions you will have to make.
For that reason, it is vital that you stop and think about what the business needs, what the role needs, and the type of person who is going to best address those needs.
It is also vital to consider what skills, experience and expertise you currently have. There can be a real temptation, even if it is sub-conscious, to recruit more of the same. Remember that a tool box with a lot of the same tools never gets the job done. Equally, a team with gaps in skills or expertise never gets the best job done.
Set clear expectations
One of the biggest gripes you will hear from people is that they don’t always have clarity about what is expected of them. The reality is that many leaders really struggle to provide clear expectations.
To overcome this, be systematic in your approach. Think first about what, at a very high level, you want the person in that job to achieve. This is sometimes called the 50,000 feet view of the job.
Next consider what is critical for the person in the role to deliver to achieve the overall high level aim from the job. Finally, use these critical success factors as a basis for setting results orientated objectives.
Utilize the full potential of all team members
One would think that this would be a given. However, there is a huge difference between perception and reality. Leaders sometimes just have a surface level understanding of those on the team. They don’t really know what makes them tick or even the full range of skills and expertise they can bring to the table.
To utilize the full potential of all team members you have to invest the time in getting to know them, their skills, their experience and what really fires them up.
The Bottom Line: To be successful as a leader you have to hire and build an effective team. Being the lone ranger never works.
Duncan Brodie is Managing Director of Goals and Achievements and works with accountants and business professionals who want to become effective leaders and managers and achieve more career success .