Building and Managing A Strong Team: How to Build a Team for the Long Haul

One of the greatest challenges for any organization is how to create and manage a team that will stand the test of time. Whether you are experiencing rapid growth and need to bring on many people at once, or just starting off for the first time hiring your first employee, the decisions you make on who to hire, how to assign roles and responsibilities, your own leadership structure, and how the organization is structured internally all play a factor on whether your team will perform or storm. We gathered insights from a variety of different accelerator programs that work with their entrepreneur cohorts to prepare them to build and manage their teams as well as shared our own insights during our monthly Masterclass Session on Building and Managing Strong Teams. 

Key Qualities that Strong Teams Possess
There are many factors that help build a strong, healthy, happy team. One of the biggest success factors we have found is the level of trust that can be built over time with members of the team. Compatability is a huge factor when looking at how teams will be able to work together and synch in terms of work styles, personality types, and communication. The assignment of roles and responsibilities, linked with individuals’ specific skill sets is key – no team can survive if it doesn’t have the right people for each role within the team. Attached to individual roles and responsibilities is having a clear common goal and knowing how each individual team member is responsible for contributing towards the common goal of the organization. Communication within the team and between the different departments of a team is also key to managing a team and contributes to the overall wellbeing of the organization. Strong teams also tend to be more diverse, which helps to bring distinct perspectives to the team and to the work at hand. 

Advice to Build your Team and Keep Star Staff Members Over the Long Term

  • Don’t hire for where you are but for where you want to go. Hire with a long-term mind frame, not just for the current situation and challenges 
  • Screen for culture-fit, it is as important as the skills the person brings
  • Looking for candidates who are: deeply curious, self-starters  and life-learners
  • Have a great deal of self-motivation and connect to the mission of the organization at a deeper level
  • Be genuinely interested in them as people
  • Allow them to pursue their interests if they don’t conflict with their work
  • Diligently create a work culture that is healthy

Resources and Best Practices for Building/Managing a Strong Team

  • If they have the skillsets that meet long-term strategic plan for the enterprise, they should be expanding in their role and be challenged as the org grows. What value are YOU creating for the employee?
  • In terms of compensation and benefits – instead of just giving praise for their work, the roles and compensation need to change as they grow within that role.
  • Adding responsibilities to the role as it expands.
  • Providing professional development opportunities.
  • Figuring out what value looks like to THEM
  • P.I.E.S Check-In tool: a great tool to use to check-in with your team on a personal level. Each person gets 5-10 mins to share how they are doing on a Physical, Intellectual, Emotional, and Spiritual level. 
  • 10/10 Check-in Tool: a great tool to use for management to check in on a 1:1 basis with those that they are responsible. Each person gets 10 minutes of uninterrupted time to talk about what is going well and what can be improved in terms of the working relationship between the two people involved. 

Additional Resources