Team conflict may be inevitable, but team breakdown need not be. When managers understand their teams, they can better handle conflict, provide guidance, and motivate their staff members to meet and exceed goals within the scope of the company’s needs.
Manage teams more effectively with these six tips:
1. Treat a new employee’s onboarding as a learning experience for managers as well
A new employee faces a steep learning curve during the first few weeks on the job, no matter how qualified he or she may be. Managers can both understand and manage their teams better by treating the onboarding process as a learning opportunity for themselves. As the new employee “settles in,” use the time spent onboarding to learn about the new worker. What are his or her strengths and weaknesses? How does the new employee function best? How does he or she communicate?
2. Create systems that allow for independence while still providing oversight
A manager’s role is to keep a team focused on its role in the overall business’s goals, stepping in to provide “hands-on” guidance only when necessary. Effective project management systems and well-explained job parameters provide the autonomy team members need to leverage their own expertise, while also providing the structure and feedback management needs to keep everyone on track.
3. Remind employees regularly of the big picture
It’s easy for employees engaged in day-to-day tasks to get stuck in a “regular groove” – but teams that share a common vision are more productive and, ultimately, happier with their work and with one another. Don’t hesitate to set concrete, reachable goals and to explain regularly how these goals fit into the “big picture” work the organization performs.
An open-door policy makes it easier for employees to ask simple questions and to get feedback on their work, especially in the crucial first months on the job. Prevent mistakes before they happen simply by being available.
When conflict arises, remember that employees conflict with one another because each of them cares about the outcome. Start any attempt at conflict resolution by listening. What is it each person cares about? Can they envision a solution that includes what each person cares about and furthers the goals of the team? When employees feel heard, they are more likely to take ownership of the resolution.
6. Tell employees how to succeed
Transparency builds trust, and telling employees how to excel at their work increases the chances they actually will. Most people enjoy feeling smart, capable, and talented; by providing specific parameters for excellence, you give your team the opportunity to “show off.” What they have to show may surprise everyone – even themselves.
At Marquee Staffing, our experienced recruiters can help you find candidates who stand out as management material. Contact us today to learn more about Orange County staffing services.