Whether you’re leading a new team or taking over an existing team, leading a team for the first time can be daunting. No personal experience to develop. If it’s your first time as a team leader, then you might enjoy a challenge or consider running – or a bit of both. In addition, more and more teams are working remotely and/or adopting a hybrid model between the office and homework. There is still a lot for the new leaders to deal with today.
Here are five tips for new team leaders:
Take time to lead:
“If the highest aim of a captain were to preserve his ship, he would keep it in port forever,” said Thomas Aquinas, an Italian Dominican friar, philosopher, Catholic priest, and Doctor of the Church. An immensely influential philosopher, theologian, and jurist in the tradition of scholasticism, he is also known within the latter as the Doctor Angelicus, the Doctor Communis, and the Doctor Universalis.
To be effective, the team leader must invest time in the role. Well, if you give the responsibility to someone who already is filled with loads of work then it can damage the quality of work and make the new leader flop.
Leaders must make sure to stay visible to their team members whenever they need any support. Part of your new leadership role is to foster a positive work and community environment. If you are mainly dedicated to your own important tasks, you are not seen or able to support your team. So make sure you review and renegotiate your workload before accepting a leadership role.
Get to know your team:
A successful leader will always influence their people to work in collaboration to achieve better results. This is something you struggle with unless you know your team members and what drives them to deal with them. While it may be tempting to jump in and make big strides from day one, remember that you’re not there to flex your ego.
Make sure to listen to your people carefully so that you can understand the issues they are facing during work. Also, try to identify their strengths and weaknesses. This is the only way you can formulate a leadership approach that has a chance of success.
Communicate, communicate, communicate:
Once your team is up and running, you must maintain communication to build relationships, assess progress, and identify risks and issues. This is especially useful when managing remote teams, where employees can be broken into small work bubbles. When a new leader regularly communicates with the team members then it can help to increase engagement at the workplace. That’s because they see you investing time in them and show an interest in what they do.
Ongoing communication can also improve the types of conversations you have with your team.
Think about the behavior you want and expect from your team members. Remember to show these qualities yourself. As a team leader, you are a role model. So, what you say and do affect teamwork habits and attitudes. If you fake it, you will soon be exposed and you will lose trust and confidence.
Be open, honest, and passionate.
Recognize good performance and reward where appropriate. You may not be able to share raises and raises, but a little verbal praise goes a long way in showing your team that you recognize their accomplishments and appreciate them.
Deal with poor performance issues in a timely manner. The longer you leave it, the harder it will be to fix it. Allow your people to make mistakes and learn from them. If so, learn from them and see how to prevent it in the future. And whatever you do, don’t play the game of wine.
Neil Mitchell, co-founder, and president of risk services and insurance solutions at Player’s Health encourage small leaders to develop new skills for their effective work performance. Over the years Neil Mitchell Players Health has been successful in applying his out-of-the-box thinking to client problems and developing unique solutions that create value for others.