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Accelerating Performance of a Newly Formed Team

By: Dave Barclay

~ 3 minute read

Forming a new team can be an exciting and challenging experience. To ensure the team hits the ground running and achieves high performance, it is crucial to focus on both the individual and team approaches. In this blog post, we will explore the best practices for accelerating the performance of a newly formed team. By understanding individual work styles, strengths, and preferences, and leveraging the collective power of the team, you can foster collaboration, maximize productivity, and achieve remarkable results. Here’s the breakdown:

  1. Understand individual work styles and strengths
  2. The individual approach: breakout meetings
  3. The team approach: team assessment and strategy

Step 1: Understanding Individual Work Styles and Strengths

The foundation of a high-performing team lies in understanding each team member’s work style, strengths, and preferences. Beyond knowing their roles and responsibilities, it is vital to look deeper into how they prefer to work, their need for detail, their communication style, and their decision-making process.

Work Style Assessment

One effective approach is to dedicate focused time offsite for the team to explore and understand each other’s work styles. If available, tools like the Predictive Index can provide insights into the natural hardwired strengths of individuals. By facilitating discussions around these assessments, the team can gain a shared understanding of each member’s strengths, caution areas, and work preferences.

Feedback and Strengths Appreciation

To foster a positive team dynamic, encourage each team member to provide feedback and share their observations about others. Starting with one person at a time, discuss their likely strengths, areas for increased self-awareness, and preferred work habits. This exercise helps build a shared understanding and appreciation of individual strengths within the team. Additionally, using techniques like a flip chart or virtual whiteboard to capture the strengths admired by others reinforces positive affirmation.

Identifying Start, Stop, and Continue Actions

In addition to appreciating strengths, it is essential to identify actions that will enhance collaboration and productivity. Each team member can reflect on what they would like to see others start doing, stop doing, or continue doing and what they themselves commit to changing. This exercise encourages open communication and provides a roadmap for working effectively together.

Step 2: Individual Approach – Breakout Meetings

Once the team gains insight into each member’s work style and preferences, individual breakout meetings can be scheduled to address specific differences and foster effective collaboration.

One-on-One Dialogues

Encourage team members with contrasting work styles to have one-on-one meetings. These meetings provide an opportunity for individuals to express their preferred approaches and establish common ground. For instance, team members can discuss their meeting preferences, such as the need for information in advance, time to think, preference for formal agendas, or specific communication styles. This understanding will help team members adapt their interactions for improved collaboration.

Step 3: Team Approach

Understanding the team’s collective strengths and potential pitfalls is crucial for achieving high performance. Go beyond simple get-to-know-you “team building” activities, and focus on how your team members tackle and achieve goals together. By analyzing work styles and strengths against the mission and objectives of your team, you can gain more alignment and productivity.

Team Assessment

If available, tools like the Predictive Index can provide insights into the team’s natural strengths and caution areas.  Find what behaviors your team members have in common, who brings balance with distinctive strengths, and any natural gaps based on your team’s make-up. Analyzing the team’s collective behavior profile allows for a deeper understanding of what the team is naturally inclined to excel at and areas that require additional attention.

Action Planning

Once the team’s natural strengths and caution areas are identified, it is crucial to develop action plans to leverage strengths and mitigate potential challenges. Use the same Start, Stop, Continue feedback method or have the team brainstorm solutions to increase productivity. Team members can collaborate on strategies to maximize the team’s strengths, align them with organizational objectives, and establish protocols to address caution areas effectively.

Continuous Improvement

To sustain high performance, regularly revisit and reassess the team’s progress. Monitor the effectiveness of the action plans, identify areas for improvement, and make necessary adjustments. Encourage open communication and feedback within the team to foster a culture of continuous learning and growth.

In Summary

Accelerating the performance of a newly formed team requires a multifaceted approach that encompasses individual and team dynamics. By understanding individual work styles, strengths, and preferences, team members can adapt their interactions and enhance collaboration. Leveraging the collective strengths of the team and addressing caution areas through action planning fosters a high-performing culture. With dedication, open communication, and a commitment to continuous improvement, your newly formed team can achieve exceptional results and exceed expectations.

Your Next Step

Ready to accelerate the performance of your newly formed team? Put these best practices into action and unlock your team’s potential for success. Embrace a deeper understanding of individual work styles, leverage team strengths, and foster a culture of continuous improvement. Take the next step towards achieving remarkable results. Remember, success begins with understanding and collaboration. Empower your team and drive high performance like never before.

Don’t wait any longer—take action now and transform your newly formed team into a powerhouse of productivity and collaboration. Want more customized insights? Reach out to a MindWire consultant and get started on your journey to success today!

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Dave Barclay

The go-to guy for enhancing workplace productivity and happiness. A family man and Japanese language learner, he's also a home improvement buff and an even-steven Texas Hold'em player when he’s not busy going the extra mile for his clients.