New leaders, this one's for YOU!
Getting a group of people to move in the same direction is tough, whether you’ve been in a leadership role for 10 years or 10 days. How do you inspire unique individuals, each with their own thoughts, ideas, and perspectives, to come together as a cohesive unit? If you’re a new leader, this is especially tricky. Not only are you trying to get people on track toward a common goal, but you’re also adjusting to the ins and outs of … well, everything that goes along with being a new leader. We see you and we know that transition isn’t always easy!
If you’re not sure where to get started and you need a few ideas to get your team on the same page, you’ve come to the right place. We’re here to help you kick off your shiny new role with ideas that will get individual team members working together like a well-oiled machine!
People (and plants!) need positive.
Ready for a fun fact you didn’t know you needed to hear today? While plants need water, good soil, and sunlight to grow, they also need positive energy. They feed off of vibrations and some research even suggests that words of encouragement could be exactly what your plants need to thrive.
Why are we telling you this and what does it have to do with team building? Just like plants, teams need positive environments (and lots of words of encouragement) to grow. As a leader, you get to play a huge role in bringing that environment to life! What can you do to establish a culture of positivity?
Make communication #1.
No matter what kind of team you’re on, communication is an important part of the success of the whole group. Looking for a few pointers on helping your team communicate effectively? Start here:
- Be an example. Check-in with each team member often, give great feedback, and most importantly, make people feel valued by listening. (Need to brush up on your conversation skills? Read this post.)
- Huddle up! We love this idea so much that we use it regularly here at WWG™ headquarters. Get everyone in a circle (or go around the Zoom™ screen) and have each person share wins or challenges they’ve had recently. Just an all-around positive energy type of exercise that’ll leave your team members feeling supported and heard!
- Go beyond the emails. Get creative with your communication channels! Check out this great list of tools to keep your team connected, whether near or far.
Set team goals.
The goal of a soccer team is to do what? Score goals, right? Specifically, the goal is to score more goals than the other team (have we used the word “goals” enough yet?).
Without team goals, we’re all just doing our own thing. One person may be putting their all-out effort into winning a soccer game, sprinting up and down the field, while another person is sitting and picking daisies the entire time. Having shared goals keeps us aligned with one another. They give us direction—a purpose greater than ourselves. Read this article for a quick guide to setting team goals that everyone can get on board with.
Cut off conflict.
No matter how much time you invest into creating a positive environment, we can probably all agree that every team deals with conflict on some level. Whether it’s a big conflict, or someone’s mad at someone else for taking the last slice of cake, make it your priority as a leader to help resolve any issues before they have a chance to escalate. Read this post for a few conflict management ideas to help your team keep the peace.
Being a leader who inspires individuals is amazing, but getting people to work together toward a common goal? That’s even better. Your new role is giving you an opportunity to be creative and find new ways to get everyone working in unison. Are you up for the challenge?