Organizations have always been made up of people with various talents and strengths. When those people are empowered to be at their best, and to use their strengths on a daily basis, they become more engaged in their work. When they are truly valued as individual members of a team that is working together to accomplish shared goals, they become more productive. Therefore, in order to maximize productivity, it’s essential to invest in your people. They are the driving force behind your success.
This starts with learning and understanding the strengths of each individual and then using that knowledge to optimize the team dynamics within your organization. When you optimize the team dynamics, you naturally improve the relationships among your employees, which leads to greater productivity.
At Throwing Words, our work with leaders and teams typically falls into three areas: fixing broken teams, optimizing underperforming teams, and conditioning high-performing teams. This article outlines each one and briefly discusses how optimizing their performance can lead to greater success for your organization.
Types of Workplace Teams
- Broken Teams: Broken teams are easy to spot. Primarily composed of actively disengaged individuals, they result in low productivity rates and deplete the energy of an entire organization.
- Underperforming Teams: Unlike broken teams, underperforming teams may be more difficult to assess. Their issues are less obvious. They may meet their goals and produce quality work, but when viewed through the lens of productivity (link to “The Evolution of Productivity), they are underperforming.
- High-Performing Teams: High-performing teams are characterized by high productivity and actively engaged employees. However, this has not always been the case. It takes a lot of effort to build and maintain high- performing teams, especially in a growing department.
How to Optimize Your Teams for Better Performance
No matter what kind of team you’re dealing with, here are four ways to ensure consistent productivity over time:
- Engage: Get to know the strengths of your team members, and build relationships with them.
- Empower: Invest in the tools and technologies your employees need in order to be more productive.
- Evacuate: (Figuratively speaking.) Being too involved in the day-to-day could be greatly hindering your productivity, as well as the performance of those around you. Getting out the way will free you up and allow your employees to focus on delivering results in a timely manner. They’ll also feel more empowered to do so.
- Evaluate: Once you begin to see improvements in performance, realize that your work is not over. Maintaining a high-performing team requires constant re-evaluation and assessment of your current tools, systems, and goals as an organization.
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