When our clients bring new talent on board they use the great insights they uncovered using the McQuaig behavioral assessment to quickly help them to become fully acclimatized to your company’s culture and systems. We have found that the sooner they settle, the sooner you can start to reap rewards. It will help if you complete an induction that is based on how they assimilate information. Don’t forget to have them sign a detailed contract of employment, which outlines what you expect from them.
Strange as it may sound, many employees do not have a clear sense of their role, or your expectations. Such confusion can cause disagreements, or even duplication or omission of tasks. This is clearly bad for productivity, efficiency and effectiveness. Your team needs to know their job and responsibilities; a job description will help but one of the fundamental roles of a leader is to establish what is required of each member of your team to contribute to the overall success of the organization. That means frequent communication.
Part of empowering your team is trusting they can get on with the job without you peering over their shoulder every fifteen minutes. If you want staff members to flourish, they need to be given the responsibility and freedom to figure it out for themselves. Bear in mind that some members of your team will require more clearly defined expectations than others. Our clients rely on the insights they developed using the McQuaig behavioral assessment when they validated role fit. Of course you need to keep a watchful eye, but there is a happy medium where they know you trust them. Your team is more likely to over-perform if they feel good about what they are doing. Motivated staff work harder and will tell you that money is not the prime driver of employee engagement. People want to know what is expected of them, and then they want to be allowed the freedom to do just that. This is far easier if the right people are employed in the first place.
Effective communication is the lifeblood of any organization, regardless of its size. That may mean face-to-face talks, pinning notes on a board, using instant messaging or social media. Provided your team knows what’s going on, you are being an effective leader. Ask the members of your team how they prefer communication to happen. This helps to empower them but sets the stage for collaboration. It’s the number one area that gets highlighted in employee engagement surveys.
It can happen that there is a sincere intention to improve communication, and it all starts off positively: team briefs, newsletters; intranets, etc. The next thing you know, you get busy and things start to slow down. As a leader you cannot let this happen. It may mean important information is not imparted, or you are viewed as not bothered how the team is getting on. You can never be too busy to communicate with your team.
Communication is not much use if your team believes it is not getting the whole picture. Bad news is still news, and you must trust that your people are mature enough to handle it, or you may find they are insulted and no longer believe what you tell them. Gossip and office politics have no part in the conversations a leader has with their team. One of the most important elements of the leadership role is keeping your team abreast of all that is pertinent to them.
Effective consultation is a vital tool to improving performance. Your team members have specific roles. Your collective overview may be more knowledgeable, but there may be team members whose specific knowledge is greater than yours. Asking for their input and opinion is not a sign of weakness; it is not only the sensible course of action, it serves to empower and engage the members of your team. The more facts you have, the easier and more effective your decision-making will be. Getting the most out of your team is greatly aided by effective consultation and it demonstrates respect from you to them.
All companies should review the performance of their staff on a regular basis. Let’s be clear, the annual performance appraisal just doesn’t work. When staff appraisals do not work, it is for the following reasons: They are nowhere near frequent enough; there is no system in place for undertaking reviews on a regular basis; there is no system in place to track and review commitments so very little development work actually gets done; they are used purely to air grievances and as a result become a negative thing; the appraiser isn’t trained to appraise so the results are unreliable; there is no regular follow-up so improvements and development opportunities are missed.