5 Commandments of Building a SUPERIOR Team
Article discusses the 5 key commandments owners must observe in order to build a superior team. Superior teams make life so much easier for owners.
As businesses have begun hiring employees, I thought it would be appropriate to focus this blog post on the 5 Commandments of Building a SUPERIOR Team. While working with business owners to build superior teams, I find that many of the following 5 Commandments are missing. As a result, most businesses operate with an average team instead of a superior team. Average team = average results = missed potential.
Commandant 1: Owners Must Recognize the Value of a SUPERIOR Team
Let’s start by recognizing that regardless of the size of a company, the most important asset of any business isn’t equipment, property, or inventory…it’s the company’s people. Yet, the focus of most business owners isn’t on their team and building a superior team; instead they focus on doing the work or service their business provides.
I find too many business owners don’t appreciate the huge lift a Rockstar employee, and especially a team of Rockstars, can give to their businesses. Perhaps that’s because most business owners are used to managing only average teams and don’t appreciate the impact a team of Rockstars can have. One of my clients decided that she was tired of hiring average employees only to fire them or watch as they left on their own accord. So, she went all in to find and hire a Rockstar. She found one and has been amazed at the difference this one hire has made. Imagine the impact if her entire team were Rockstars.
This client has been able to delegate more work than she ever was able to with her pervious average employee, and she’s confident the work will be done correctly. This in turn has allowed my client to become more focused on strategic issues to grow the business. Prior to making this hire, she had spent little time focusing strategically, because she was continually following-up on or correcting work she had given to the prior employee.
Lesson 1: Don’t settle for average employees…hire the best.
Commandant 2: Owners Must Market Their Business to Attract the Best
Your first step in attracting your ideal candidate is to define who your ideal candidate is. You need to have clarity around both their skills as well as their personal traits. All too often owners overlook the personal traits and hire based solely on the candidate’s job skills, and as a result they hire a very good web designer or carpenter or accountant, but the person is always late, isn’t a good team player, can’t effectively communicate, etc. They become a cancer to the team. So, define what you’re looking for before you start looking.
Many business owners claim they can’t find top quality talent. That’s because they use old traditional recruiting techniques which are expensive, slow and often don’t result in hiring the ideal person. The talent is out there, but to be attracted to your business, you must create a job posting or advertisement that appeals to top-notch talent. These people are typically working for someone else. Gone are the days where you can expect top-notch talent to contact you in response to a “here are the requirements” job posting. Today it’s essential to create an exciting post; one that is compelling for someone who is happy in their job.
Here’s a portion of an actual job posting. Would you respond to this posting if you were happy in your current position?
“XYZ electrical services is seeking a Registered Electrician to complete service job in the greater [name of city] are.
Do have any of the following?
Current electrical registration / practicing license
Previous electrical fault finding experience
Good all round electrical knowledge
Be able to work unsupervised
The position includes a company van, cellphone, tablet and company uniform”
It’s not compelling enough for a happy employee to pick up the phone and call. Among other things I work with owners to help them create compelling advertisements for Rockstars.
One of my clients posted an interest-creating advertisement that we created and has landed a Rockstar…a person that will have a dramatic impact on the growth of my client’s business. But it wouldn’t have happened if we had posted a typical advertisement like the one above.
Lesson 2: Market your business to attract your ideal candidates…stop using traditional job posting language.
Commandant 3: Owners Must Develop Their Business to Attract the Best
Commandment 2 was about creating a compelling reason for your ideal candidate to reach out to you. Commandment 3 is about creating an organization they would want to work for.
To create an organization your ideal candidate would want to work in requires the owner to spend time focused on creating the following:
• Roles and responsibilities – each position should have its roles and responsibilities documented in writing. Your ideal candidates will want to know what’s expected and they’ll expect those expectations to be documented.
• Performance reviews – the best of the best became the best, because they care about the quality of their work and that they’re doing more than what’s expected of them. It is therefore important that you have a regular performance review process in place.
• High team morale – there are many strategies to accomplish this, but they all boil down to caring about members of your team and treating them right and genuinely recognize their efforts.
• Clarity around where the business is going – Most business owners haven’t clearly defined their destination for the business. It’s like going on vacation without know where you’re going. Rockstar candidates will want to know your vision, after all why would they want to work for someone who doesn’t have direction and is in total react mode?
Lesson 3: Make your business attractive to Rockstars.
Commandant 4: Owners Must Appreciate, Fully Support, and Coach Their Team
Top-notch employees are in demand by your competitors. So, it behooves you as the owner to do everything you can to create an organization that becomes “sticky” of its employees…meaning, they don’t want to leave. What are you doing to build an organization that cares about the team and creates an environment where employees want to work…that has a reputation as a great place to work?
Here are a couple ideas:
• Be inspirational – people want to be around inspirational leaders, not those who are solely focused on execution of a job.
• Be motivational – if you were to ask members of your team how motivational you are on a scale of 1 -10, how do you feel they’d answer? Why not ask them?
• Be concerned about them as individuals – build an organization where top-notch team members feel welcomed and part of a team, you need to take an interest in each member.
• Communicate often with them as a team – build a sense of being a team and not a group of individuals
• Empower them – embrace delegating work to members of the team who have shown ability, respect the opinions of each members (listen to them), share your goals with them.
• Be a strong leader – don’t tolerate poor performance (but only after you’ve done everything you can to teach and train), but also coach and lead the team through motivation.
Lesson 4: Focusing on these facets of team leadership will help you attract and grow a SUPERIOR team.
Commandant 5: Owners Must Recognize That Ownership Means They Own the Ship
As the owner of your ship (your business) you set the course and who works for you. Meaning, you need to be focused on what’s most important to the growth of your business.
At the beginning I stated that your employees are the most important asset you have. Great employees can make almost any business look good, whereas poor employees can take a business down. So, where are you spending most of your time? Is the majority of your time focused on your team and building them into a SUPERIOR team? Or, is doing the work of the business consuming more of your time and attention? You may have gotten into your business because you enjoy the work, but that’s a trap and is an easy way to get on the ever-rotating hamster wheel.
Focus on your team – hire the best, train them well, inspire them, motivate them, and they will take care of your customers, who in turn will refer more business to you. Failure to focus on your team typically results in your running an average team and your business will never be better than average.
Lesson 5: As the owner, you decide what happens in your business. So, decide to build a superior team and start following the above steps to begin building that SUPERIOR team. Don’t wait.
The results can be life-changing for you…more leisure time for you, far less time needed to correct errors, and more profits. I have experience working with business owners to build outstanding teams and would be glad to speak with you about your team. You can reach me at 404.444.1836 or firstname.lastname@example.org. My website is jefflovejoy.actioncoach.com