No matter how well your team performs, there is always room for improvement. Leaders need to understand when and how to augment team performance. The key to augmenting team performance is offering authority, encouraging questions, resolving differences, and practicing unanimity.
One of the greatest tools that you can offer employees is the authority to make decisions. This level of empowerment makes employees stakeholders in the company, and it creates personal interest in the results of decisions. Employees should be given the authority to make decisions, but this authority needs to be limited to established guidelines. Employees should not be given carte blanche.
Employees should be encouraged to ask questions in order to improve team performance. Scenario questions are particularly effective. This requires asking the “what if” questions.
Quickly Resolve Differences
It is important that differences are quickly resolved to improve team performance. The first step in resolving conflict is recognizing that conflict exists. At this stage, all parties agree to communicate and cooperate.
The next step is the clarifying the situation. This requires people to express their different positions. At this stage, facts, opinions, and assumptions are separated. The reasons for supporting different positions are supplied and analyzed. It is critical that people remain open-minded for this process to work.
An agreement is reached in the final stage. It is important to note that this process may be repeated before an agreement is reached. The final stage should include specifics such as dates, actions, and responsible parties.
Unanimity occurs when all team members agree on the action to be taken. This is not conformity; it simply means that everyone has compromised and reached an agreeable solution. The problem with unanimity is that it can be nearly impossible to reach. People will often refuse compromise for the sake of being right. The process of resolving difficulties can result in unanimity when all parties are willing to keep open minds as they discuss their opposing views.
This post is from March’s topic on “High Performance Teams Inside the Company“, which is also a full course on our MBA Certificate program, available online from Harvard Square. To build a strong foundation in leadership and business administration, this 100% online 6-month program is scheduled to start on the 1st of every month.