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  • Five Ways a Leader Can Build the Perfect Team

    04/21/16 9:30 AM | By :Exact Staff | Categories : Employers | Leave a Comment
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    Ever wondered why some work teams soar and accomplish amazing things – while others stagnate and fail?

    That’s what Google set out to determine over four years ago. In their quest to build the perfect team, Google’s People Operations department launched Project Aristotle, investing millions of dollars and thousands of man hours to measure nearly every aspect of their employees’ lives, managers’ behavior and more. Their experts:

    • Reviewed a half-century’s worth of academic studies on team dynamics and performance.

    • Analyzed team composition, including members’ gender, interests, education and motivations, to identify patterns which influenced group success.

    • Even scrutinized employees’ lunchroom eating behavior, to see if and how social networks related to team performance.

    Did they uncover some “magic formula” for creating a high-functioning team? Nope. But, they did determine a fundamental (and somewhat common-sense) component to successful team-building: psychological safety.

    In plain English, “psychological safety” enables team members to feel comfortable opening up to other group members and taking reasonable risks – without fear of embarrassment, rejection or punishment.

    Makes sense, right? When team members feel secure with one another, they’re more likely to work well together.

    Take advantage of Google’s team-building revelation. As a leader, here are five things you can do to increase psychological safety – and create better teams:

    Encourage Team Members to Think

    Permit employees to express their opinions, offer new suggestions, challenge one another’s thinking, and even disagree with you. Welcome their involvement. Listen to their input. Take their suggestions seriously – and test out their best ideas.

    Be Willing to Give Up Control

    Work with your team to establish clear priorities, guidelines, measurable objectives and accountability. Then be willing to let go, allowing the team to direct their own activities (both individually and as a group). Empowering your team increases cohesion and ultimately supports success.

    Share the Big Picture

    Make sure your team understands how their work fits into and impacts other departments, your organization, your community and beyond. When employees know how and why their work matters, they feel inspired to do great things.

    Facilitate Interaction

    Encourage team members to talk openly with one another. Establish guidelines and routines for professional, friendly and detailed communication, regardless of the medium used. Do what you can to enhance the flow of dialogue among members and with you. The fewer communication “silos” you have, the more tight-knit your team will be.

    Make Failure Acceptable

    To foster great teams, build a culture in which acceptable risk-taking and failure are tolerated. As a leader, it’s up to you to create a “psychological safety zone” in which employees know they can try and fail – without being punished or fired. And when employees do make mistakes, use those missteps as opportunities to learn (experience is often the best teacher!).

    To Build Better Teams, Start by Choosing the Right Staffing Partner

    With a national presence, and a full complement of staffing and placement services, Exact Staff can rapidly deliver exceptional people to build your core team. Improve productivity. And seamlessly flex your workforce to match changing demands.

    What can we do for you?

    Contact a staffing expert at your local Exact Staff office today.

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