As we have been working with a variety of clients and teams this year, we’ve noticed a pattern of waning enthusiasm for actual team meetings and team focus. Part of this pattern stems from company stresses and challenges related to growth, but another part is directly caused by lack of time and effort put forth to bring team members together. In today’s remote environment, it is easier to have individual goals and responsibilities and gather periodically to compare notes, rather than expend the extra effort of implementing practices that ensure the team is working and thriving together.

Boost Team Performance With These Three Simple Ideas

If this sounds familiar, how do you get your own team out of this funk and on a path to better team performance for 2024? Here are themes, and ideas within them, that are easy to implement now and will help you build a better team.

STEP ONE: Build a Desirable Team Culture

Don’t jump to a conclusion that you have to spend hours of extra time developing a team culture that everyone will want to be a part of. The key is that as a team leader, you just need to recognize that your team members are human, and they want to have a connection with the people they work with. You can do this by recognizing their personal goals and milestones just as much as recognizing their business performance.

Easy Implementation Ideas:

  • Have a team call (even if just for 15 minutes) to celebrate a team member’s birthday. Even better, also send them a treat like a small gift card or bakery item, and an electronic birthday card with messages from their co-workers.
  • Have monthly or 2x per month overall check in calls where you spend time asking team members what is going on in their life (and not just with work projects).
  • BONUS: Use this feedback to find other potential milestones to help track and celebrate, or uncover other ways you can connect with your team members.
STEP TWO: Establish Motivating Group/Team Goals

Most everyone dreads the annual performance review conversation. Equally, all employees expect their leaders/managers to have routine performance conversations that zero in on the leader/manager view of how the employee is meeting/lagging/exceeding their goals. Much less time is spent on talking about the performance of the team collectively and how individual team members are key to the team’s performance.

Easy Implementation Ideas:

  • Once you are aware of your company’s overall goals for 2024, take a couple of hours to determine two to three specific team goals that directly relate to those higher-level company goals.
  • Set up a meeting to share your team goals for the year, include how they relate to the company goals, and have an open dialogue where team members can help to self-identify where those goals fit with their individual job roles/responsibilities.
  • Measure the goals on a monthly basis in team meetings. That helps team members stay focused on the goals, helps the team understand where collectively you are meeting/lagging/exceeding the goals, and opens the door for brainstorming conversations about how to improve as the year progresses.
  • BONUS: This also helps you with performance review conversations with individual team members.
STEP THREE: Conquer Remote Collaboration

Before the pandemic, it was easier for teams to gather in-person on a daily/weekly basis and have both formal and informal gatherings to work together to solve issues. Today, that is not a reality for most teams. Some have never gathered together at all, or perhaps have gathered only one or two times per year to attend a larger company event. This means you as a leader should carve out time to create team collaboration. The key is determining appropriate scenarios that spark team collaboration conversations that can happen on a virtual call – just as easily as they can happen with everyone in a room together.

Easy Implementation Ideas:

  • Use your monthly team meetings where you check in on team goals and team performance to ensure you take time for the brainstorming conversations in Step Two. An easy way to do this is to put on your facilitator hat after presenting the latest team performance metrics.
  • Ask each team member to go one at a time and answer the question: “So what ideas can you think of that we could explore in the next few months to improve the team metrics?” It is key to have everyone contribute an idea, even if they just agree with someone else’s idea already presented.
  • Schedule 1-2 meetings each quarter to gather the team together on a broader strategy topic or challenge. The purpose of these meetings is to gather team input and feedback on a particular issue. The meeting itself not only raises awareness to all team members on the issue, but also purposefully engages all team members to participate in the discussion and even collaborate to address the issue.
  • BONUS: Asking for ideas helps team members feel like they are part of something bigger, and gives them opportunities to discuss topics that aren’t always directly part of their day-to-day activities.

We promise that implementing these simple ideas will help you guide a path to a better aligned, motivated and organized team in 2024. As always, we encourage you to share other best practices that you personally have seen work with your own teams or witnessed from other teams.

Finally, happy holidays to everyone and wishing you the best of success next year!!

Contact Us Today

We make it easy to jump start success. Simply contact us and share your current team challenge or need, and we’ll respond with program ideas to innovate your team performance.

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