You have my full support.
Any good team leader is their team’s first and most enthusiastic supporter. To be a successful team leader, you need to have a successful team. It’s not enough to manage your team, assign tasks and oversee their performance. You need to help them achieve their team goals and individual goals. It’s your responsibility to set them up for success and get them the resources and tools they need to do their job.
Here are a few ways you can show your support for your team:
- Communicate on a regular basis and whenever necessary. Don’t tell them I’ve sent every information you need by email, hold a 10-minute meeting to make sure every member of your team understands correctly the project and their tasks.
- Do 1-on-1 meetings with every team member where they talk and you listen.
- Advocate for your team to top management. If they have come up with a strategy to improve the company’s operations, pitch the strategy to top management and find arguments to support the strategy.
- Create development opportunities. The team who grows together is more agile, creative, has a higher performance rate and brings in more results. Create opportunities for mentorship inside the team and help more experienced team members share their skills with less experienced colleagues. This will nurture trust, skills growth and increased confidence.
Let me start by bragging about you and this team.
Take every opportunity presented to you to congratulate your team on their achievements. There’s always something positive you can say no matter how difficult things are. Take a team-focused approach and also an individual-focused approach. The team is successful as a team because team members work together, communicate effectively and care about meeting their goals. That’s something that needs to be acknowledged in front of the top management and the rest of the company.
I am sorry.
Team leaders are human beings and like any human being, they can make mistakes. If you have wronged your team or any of its members, take a step forward and come clean. Saying these three little words can be very powerful and have a lasting impact on your team. It shows you are emotionally mature enough to admit your mistakes and being vulnerable in front of your team is actually a sign of strength. No one is right all the time and admitting that would persuade your team to respect you even more than before.
Tell me more.
It’s so easy to show your team members that you care about them. Just invite them to talk about themselves and their lives without any judgement coming from you. ‘Tell me more’ is the magical combination of words that encourages them to open up and share essential insights of their lives. It convinces them that you are a leader who cares about them and their interests or about the situation they are going through at the moment. And it feels so good to know that they are more than just employees and that the company cares about them beyond ROI or KPIs. It strengthens the bond between them and the company.
What can I do to help you be more successful?
All employees want to be successful at their jobs and be seen by their team leader and top management. So ask them what being successful means to them and how you can help them achieve their goal. It’s a great opportunity to listen carefully and take notes. Do they need the help of a digital tool to increase their productivity? Do they need to take on fewer tasks so they can focus on one or two projects and acquire the mental space they need to be more creative? Do they need to acquire new skills? Would they like to move to a new department or receive new responsibilities? Once you know what their needs are, map the steps or actions you will take together to help them achieve their professional goals.
What’s one thing you did recently you are proud of?
No matter how small, every member of your team is proud of something they did lately. Whether it’s completing an individual task on time, helping a team member or just writing a very good email headline, let them tell you what they are proud of. It’s a great way for you to learn what’s important to them and discover small wins that you might not be even aware of. Life happens when we take small steps. We improve with every small achievement we write on our success list. And you, as their team leader, should celebrate with them.