A high performance team is a unique combination of a set of individuals with specific roles and possessing complementary talents and skills. The skills of these individuals are aligned with and utilized in a focussed manner towards achieving a common purpose. The consistent and high levels of collaboration and innovation showcased by these high Performing teams contribute towards producing superior outcome. High performing teams are closely knit and focused towards achieving the desired goal. They also have supportive processes that enable any team member to overcome any barriers that they may encounter while achieving the team’s goals.
What does high Performance team look like?
A unique facet of a high performance team is that the team comprises of individuals who are highly skilled, highly motivated, with high learning agility, demonstrated by their ability to successfully interchange their roles as and when required. Additionally, another interesting facet is that the leadership within the team does not depend on a single individual. The leadership role is shared amongst various team members, according to the need at that moment. The high performing teams are known for their robust methods of conflict resolution and unwavering mutual trust, so that under no circumstances does conflict stand as a roadblock to achieving the team’s goals. There is a sense of great focus and intense energy that is visible in a high performing team. The team has its own perception and follows certain norms and values within the team. They possess a strong sense of accountability towards achieving their target goals.
A significant amount of time is invested by the leaders towards taking up measures for improving their teams. The leaders ensure that the team is consistently performing better, innovating as much as they can, and resolving conflicts in any given circumstance. They groom the team in such a manner that they are independently able to solve any problem that emerges.
Characteristics of a High Performance Team
High performing teams are defined by a set of common characteristics and behaviours which are the key to their success. They include:
- A democratic and participative leadership style helps in involving and engaging all the team members and giving each member an opportunity to showcase their leadership abilities.
- A high performance team is known for its effective decision-making abilities. The team adopts a blend of rational and intuitivedecision making methods based on the nature of the task or situation in hand.
- A high performance team ensures that the team practices open communication by adopting various effective communication methods and channels.
- A high performing team values the diverse mix of experience and background within the team. This diversity contributes to a diversity of viewpoints, thereby leading to better decision making capabilities within the team.
- A high performing team harbors a great deal of mutual trust within the team members and on the entire team as a whole.
- A high performing team is quite well equipped to deal with any kind of conflict in an open and transparent manner without holding any grudges against each other.
- A high performing team has defined roles and responsibilities for each team member. The members have a clear understanding of what they must do and what they must not do in order to contribute effectively towards the team’s success.
- A high performing team showcases great coordination amongst the team members.
- A high performing team focuses in harboring a positive environment within the team. A team culture that is open, positive, transparent, and futuristic always helps in delivering success.
10 steps to build a high performance team
Success for a business in today’s working scenario is more team centric rather than individual centric. The essence of a team is much more than just a group of workers who are located together simply performing their roles and responsibilities. Interdependency is a very important factor that drives teams. Since this requires each member of the team to rely on one another to get the job done effectively, let’s try and understand the best practices that need to be followed to build a high performing team.
- Define and Create Interdependencies.It is very important to define and structure the roles of each and every team member. Take an example of any successful sports team. The team succeeds because everyone has a defined position to play. Success is bound to follow when all of the players are managing and playing according to their defined roles.
- EstablishGoals. It is imperative for a high performing team to stay focused on shared goals and outcomes and deliver accordingly. A great deal of commitment towards a specified goal is vital for success. Hence it is important to set both individual and team goals.
- Determine How Teams Will Make Decisions.Encourage democracy when it comes to decision making instead of autocracy. It is important that the team understands beforehand how and what decisions need to be made. This reduces the scope of conflict within the team as everyone is on the same page.
- Provide Clear and Constant Feedback. Open and balanced feedback at regular intervals enables the team to understand how they are performing. This helps them to stay motivated and to take corrective measures. It is a great idea to set up a feedback mechanism system where team members receive ongoing feedback while they are performing their jobs.
- Keep Team Membership Stable. It is very important to maintain stability within the team especially if your project entails complex tasks. This is recommended as it takes a lot of time for team members to adapt and learn to work together producing the optimum output.
- Allow Team Members to Challenge the Status Quo. Just as innovation is important, it is equally important that the high performing team members are able to challenge a particular process when in doubt without any inhibition. A successful innovation always entails an open retrospection.
- Learn How to Identify and Attract Talent.Organisations should always keep the ball rolling by identifying and hiring the best talent from the industry to rear awesome high performing teams.
- Use Team-Based Reward Systems. Organisations need to strike a balance in their reward and recognition process by adopting and promoting a mix of individual and team awards. This helps in keeping resentment within the team at bay.
- Create a Learning Environment. Organisation should encourage and facilitate a culture of continuous learning via knowledge sharing, learning from past mistakes, and honing the skills of team members by recommending them to attend courses and programs that would help in enhancing their skills.
- Focus on the Collective Mission. It is important to drill down amongst the team members that each one of them is part of a collective mission and working towards a common goal. It is equally important for the entire team to have a vision of the higher purpose.
These rules if applied and followed will contribute in building not only a high performing team but also create a successful business story for any organisation.
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