Are leaders born or made?
According to science, the idea that leadership is a natural-born skill isn’t true for most individuals. New research studies suggest that only 1 out of every 10 people have the natural ability to lead.
If you have a team leadership role at the workplace, you already understand that trying to find a balance between leading and managing can be tricky. Yet, once you find your leadership sweet spot, you’ll be able to build an amazing team that takes initiative and supports each other’s goals.
If you weren’t born with a brain hard-wired to lead, now’s your chance to get the facts. Read on to find out the truth about leadership and its many workplace benefits.
Defining Team Leadership
People can work at the same company for years, achieve goals together, sit-in meetings beside each other regularly and still, they aren’t a part of a team. Spending time around your co-workers doesn’t automatically create a team environment.
Build a team and then help guide it as the leader. Let’s look at what elements go into creating a strong team.
Elements of a Good Team
Here are a few things your team needs:
For a team to function properly, both the leader and the members have to be flexible and trusting of each other. As the leader, you have to establish a culture where everyone is wholeheartedly supportive of one another.
Example of True Teamwork
If you need an example of a great team environment, take a moment to think about what surgeons do daily. Surgeons lead teams that include surgical assistants, the anesthetist, nurses, and various technicians.
Every team member has a highly skilled function they specialize in. Yet, every member understands that their success wholly depends on the success of their team-mates. Everyone on the team has the same objective, the well-being of the patient.
When you have a strong team environment at work, everyone will be working towards the same goal. The overall well-being of the group will become the focus of your team members instead of individual desires.
Leadership and Team Building
So far we’ve been discussing the elements of team leadership and what a dream team looks like. To develop a dream team of your own, you must begin leading group exercises.
Introducing Workers First
Before you can begin leading your team in exercises, you’ll first want to make sure everyone knows each other. If you have new hires, make sure they’re introduced during training using services like the ones offered by PowerHouse Hub or company-wide emails.
Types of Team Exercises
Team building exercises help co-workers learn to function as a unit. They go a long way towards establishing trust, support, flexibility, and productivity.
Just because you’re establishing a team environment, that doesn’t mean you can’t benefit from a little friendly competition. Try getting your team members involved in a weekly game of workplace jeopardy that you host.
Workplace jeopardy is a great way to help new employees learn about the company, while veteran workers can show off their knowledge. For this team-building exercise, you must create questions that center on the company or industry you’re in. You can tackle 2 goals at once by incorporating safety questions to make it both a team-building exercise and safety awareness.
Teams Take Initiative
Do you automatically think of leaders as a boss or manager? While bosses and managers lead, you don’t have to be in a supervisory role to lead a team at work. Consider subordinating your role as a manager or supervisor, and instead, start acting as a facilitator.
The moment you stop having to micromanage every aspect of the business, the more productive your company will be. To create a team that can take initiative on their own, you must learn how to serve them as a leader. One of the best ways to serve is to facilitate.
Great team leaders are facilitators who help make life easier for the group to do their work. The main emphasis of a facilitator in the group’s success. Instead of focusing on managing, make the group the most important entity.
How Leaders Facilitate
Many leaders are afraid to facilitate and instead stay stuck exhausting themselves trying to gain control over the group. Keep in mind that facilitators don’t surrender control. Even though your main goal is to serve the group, you’ll still have control over keeping them on track.
Here’s how Leaders facilitate:
- Establish standard operating procedures
- Delegate responsibilities
- Nominate group ambassadors
- Intervene when the group goes awry
- Help when the group exceeds given authority
- Provide feedback and answer questions
Give your team the power to get the job done together, without you holding their hand. Instead of having to be in charge of everything, you’re letting your team know you trust them. As a result, you’ll have an empowered group of experienced individuals that know how to assume ownership and take initiative.
Now you know more about the importance of team leadership and how you can guide your team to success! As you grow in your facilitating leadership role, you’ll begin to identify areas of improvement you never saw before. For example, great leaders often recognize that the workspace their workers are in isn’t as productive as it could be.
Start looking around your workplace today and see what areas of improvement you can identify. Put yourself in the shoes of your team members. Sit where they sit, type where they type, talk where they talk.
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