Basics of High Performing Teams

By Declan Collins

Every leader wants their team to be a high performing one and almost all team members want to be part of a high performing team, so why is it so hard to achieve, and what are the things to consider to get there. It is really difficult to achieve, so in this article we will consider prerequisites and conditions that are present that allow teams to operate at this optimal level

A lot has been published about creating high performing teams and nearly all of the thought leaders in the area agree that a shared purpose is the key to creating a high performing team. It is very important that everyone is not only working towards this shared vision but also that they each know what their individual purpose is and how they contribute to the overall success of the organisation. Everyone needs to understand your purpose or to quote Simon Sinek, your “why”.

Once everyone understands their purpose, everyone’s goals and objectives need to be in line with this overall purpose and their specific role in achieving this should be clear, not only to themselves, but to everyone in the team.

Unsurprisingly, teamwork is vital in high performing teams. There are several factors that lead to the great teamwork needed to be a truly high performing team. A sense of affiliation is created when everyone is connected through that shared meaning or purpose. From here the leader must ensure that each member is full empowered and given responsibility. The leader’s role is vital. They need to communicate regularly and transparently. They also need to show recognition and celebrate the team’s successes. It’s really important not to forget that all important team need to socialise! This is important in building togetherness.

Great teams are extremely safe places for the members, where everyone operate with complete openness and they have the courage to step outside their comfort zone. No one is ever afraid to fail while trying to do the right thing. Part of this is an environment of trust and mutual respect.

The best teams also have an unmistakable energy. Typically, a diverse group of people working towards a common purpose create a dynamic synergy that is that is very obvious to anyone working within it or in close proximity to it.

Finally, high performance teams are relentlessly results driven – individually and collectively focussed on outcomes, and individually and collectively taking ownership of it.

If you want to create a high performing team, make sure everyone is clear on the purpose and then work hard on developing the environment around it.

Categories: Managing & Leading


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