Simple Tips to Boost Team Performance

Are you thinking of getting your team together to rally performance and finish the year strong? Here's some practical advice. Notice that each step of the process helps position you to lead. You could navigate these steps alone, or you could seek out a sounding board with whom to think aloud and deliberate; it might help you pull it all together and find your voice as a leader, in this moment.

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  1. Create a two-column list, Issues and Answers, the first column is problem-focused, the second is solution-focused. The desired outcomes: motivation, cohesion, optimism, and readiness to act.
  2. Talk to your senior-most leader to get her/his input on opportunities for improvement, and get a quotable message that adds focus, inspiration, and links the team’s work to the firm’s mission.
  3. Solicit input from other departments on their views of your team’s opportunities, but don't let them off the hook; ask what it might look like your team and theirs worked together with this in mind.
  4. Prepare to facilitate meeting by asking yourself, “How do I need to show up (attitude, role, message, and presence), and how can I best get them engaged, involved, and ready to act?”
  5. Post-meeting follow-up is critical to keeping the spirit alive and keeping team and stakeholders accountable for follow-through and further shaping of performance improvement.

Whether you’re starting something new, intervening to turn things around, or making a productive best-effort to finish the year well, creating an inflection point of this kind – “that was then, this is now” – can be powerful. It’s an experience of awakening. It’s a call to work smarter, not just harder. It’s a chance to reclaim control and assert your will as agents of action. Indulge the experience, enjoy the lift!