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Building Effective Teams- Part 2

The goal is that you want someone else to be able to step into any position and be able to garner about 80-85% of the job with very few questions.  I have a say, “Success is scheduled.”  This, I believe, is one of the best ways to reduce headaches, heart-aches and unnecessarily revenue loss through that “success is planned”. 

With these guidelines, your next step is to Develop a compelling recruitment plan.

This is critically important!  Rather than writing a dull-as-dishwater job description, pretend that you’re writing a personal note to the ideal person you’d like to hire.  Use this personal message as your job description.

Your job description is THE key to sourcing the right talent. Make it fun so that it reflects the culture of your company. Define the exact criteria for the position.

Once you have candidates, you’ll want to have the interview process in place to bring out the information you want to know.

For instance, define attributes of your current top performers — the hard skills, soft skills and personality and target your interview questions around these areas.

Here’s a lesson I learned the hard way!  Move quickly when you find the right person before they are hired by someone else!

Once hired, there are really three areas of training that effective organizations pay attention to.

Orientation is aimed specifically at new staff members, and is meant to help them become familiar and comfortable with the organization.

What is normally called training helps new staff people do their jobs better by focusing on the particular skills and knowledge needed for the position, and on how this particular organization applies them.

Finally, there is professional development: education and training which goes on throughout a person’s working life, and serves to help her continually improve at what she does. An organization that cares about the quality of its staff’s work will provide, or help staff members gain access to, all three types of training.

(Potential Problems can still arise!)

While you may have done everything right in the hiring and training process, you still want to be on the lookout for any signs for potential problems down the road.

Here are my person Top 10 clues:

1.        Arrives late to company meetings, or misses meetings altogether

2.        Attends meetings but is quiet, agitated, or bored.

3.        Frequently misses deadlines.

4.        His or her work quality changes from strong to mediocre or poor. 

5.        Has trouble keeping up with the pace of the work.

6.        Frequently leaves work early, arrives late or calls in sick.

7.        Spends time surfing the Internet or on the phone.

8.        Responds in a confrontational, angry, or overly aggressive way to simple requests or comments.

9.        Always negative; finds fault with everything.

10.      Or my pet peeve – Eye-rolling … which is a great indicator they are checked out and no longer on board!

What do when this happens?

The first step is to determine the reasons for the change in behavior if possible. 

If the negative change in behavior is work related, is it because the workload has increased. 

Is your employee feeling overwhelmed or not supported? 

Are there issues with other members of the team that are negatively impacting your employee?

Make it a part of your business best practices to check in with staff on a regular basis, both at group meetings and in “one on one” meetings. Let your staff know that you or others—if appropriate—are available to talk if there are concerns relating to the work.

I’d be remiss if I didn’t also acknowledge that you may not be ready to hire a staff. Let us discuss on how you still develop an A-Team to support your business.

Before I had a staff, and still to this day, I developed two A-Teams. 

Today, I want to cover the first A-Team I created.  This A-Team stands for your Always Team:

This is the team of people that you always want in your back pocket.

•          Banker

•          Attorney

•          Virtual Assistant

•          Accountant

•          Financial Advisor

•          Marketing or Branding Expert

•          Business coach

These are your soldiers on the ground, who are willing to do battle with and for you. They will grow as your business grows.  (Honestly, the best time to look out for, network with, and hire some of these people is when you don’t need them.)

The three I suggest you start with are-an attorney, an accountant and a banker.

These people can help you protect your company, ensure its viability, and finance your idea. If you don’t have money to pay these professionals, you could consider making them shareholders. 

Again, don’t just choose anyone. Find professionals who have experience in your industry and understand your company, product, or service, and are reputable—meaning they have great references.  In other words—you want people that other people are all around singing their praises.

Look for professionals who have the skill set you need and have experience and/or connections in your target markets. Those connections can prove valuable (i.e. sales or marketing).

Finally, I want to address what I call “The Power of Proximity”, and it’s is based on the fact that we are the sum of the 5 to 6 people we spend the most time with.

It is a fact that if you want to raise the quality of your business in any area, you need to raise the quality of the people you spend the most time with.

For example, if all your colleagues are negative and create drama around them,   you need to find others in your network who are positive-focused to hang out with!  The same principle applies if you want to improve your business or increase the amount of money you make.

Think carefully about who or what kind of people do you need to spend time with both personally and professionally in order to up-level your business.

If you want to be the expert in your field; you need to surround yourself with those who have accomplished just that. Ask them questions, listen and learn. Being a student will gain you many lessons to accomplishing your goals.

If you want a solid, successful business; you need to hang with people who have solid, successful businesses.

Developing a great team will change YOUR life, not just your business!  As Helen Keller so poignantly said, “Alone we can do so little.  Together, we can do so much more!”

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