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Is Your Team Firing On All Cylinders?

When analyzing some of the modern world’s most influential companies, we noticed that most of them prioritize the productivity of their individual teams; an entire company can not function at its best ability if the groups composing it are not firing at their most effective levels.

Below are some of the key methods you should use to ensure that your company's teams are working at their highest potential!
  1. Foster a strong company culture

Corporate culture refers to the beliefs and behaviors that determine how a company's employees and management interact and handle outside business transactions.

As a company grows, it is easy for early ideologies and methods to diffuse as new employees flood the ranks. In order to prevent the dissapation of corporate culture, it is essential that your company creates strategy, hires employees, and organizes teams based on the initial company values. 

Harvard Business Review details the conclusions of one University of Rochester study, which found that the six main reasons people work were “play, purpose, potential, emotional pressure, economic pressure, and inertia”. If your corporation prioritizes the positive motivating factors--play, purpose, and potential-- and integrates them as a part of corporate culture, effectiveness and satisfaction in the work environment will increase.

As such, it is important for employers to be meticulous about how their company’s culture is shaped. By hiring intrinsically motivated workers who reflect the corporation’s motives and thought processes, and by creating strategies that result in the maintenance of a strong work culture, you and your company will notice a more productive work atmosphere.

  1. Allow team members to have input 

No one likes to feel as if their opinions don’t matter. In order for a team to maximize effectiveness, the individuals that compose it must feel as though they have a voice.

A study conducted by John Izzo, author of "Stepping Up: How Taking Responsibility Changes Everything” explains that the “first reason employees don't take more initiative at work, the study shows, is that their leaders fail to get their input before making decisions.”

By encouraging team members to give recommendations with regards to meeting schedules and project ideas, and by being flexible with their schedules, you are creating a more welcoming and inclusive work atmosphere that employees will be more happy to enter on a daily basis.

Want a more effective way to gauge employee feedback? There are apps and software in current production that allow for continuous workforce evaluation and input!

  1. Be receptive to feedback

In any business, it is often times easy to become used to a certain way of doing things. However, the greatest successes often come from risky and unique ideas. As such, in order for your team to work to its greatest ability, be sure to regard each idea a team member proposes with a higher level perspective.

Be sure to have new ideas considered by multiple individuals, and consider what that idea could mean for the future, instead of looking at the way the company has functioned in the past.

Julia Hartz, a contributor for Fortune Magazine and the founder of Eventbrite, explains that within her corporation, they meet “weekly for one-on-ones, where [they] celebrate achievements, work through challenges and suggest areas for improvement.”

By encouraging a welcoming and open atmosphere for discussions and ideas, teams will gain deeper understanding and likely perform much stronger.

  1. Clarify the common goals and purposes

It is important for employers to not only state what is expected of workers individually, but how each employee’s work feeds to into the end mission of the entire company.

To elucidate the importance of goal transparency, a Forbes article reported that in a Salesforce.com study, “97% of employees and executives surveyed believe a lack of alignment within a team directly impacts the outcome of a task or project-- [essentially],  employees who have clear roles, responsibilities, and deadlines are more likely to be held accountable.”

By being transparent at a managerial level, and by restating regularly what is expected of the workforce, and continuously connecting that to the broader mission of the company, there is less room for misunderstanding, and more room for getting individual jobs done that align with the company’s overarching goals.

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