Being a team leader is a lot of work, right?
Well, yes. But not in the way we often imagine.
The real work of a team leader is making sure that he or she sets the team up to actually do the work.
This requires both strength of purpose and a willingness to hold one’s ego in check. The leader has to bear the anxiety of the team while managing his own anxiety. She has to provide all of the resources the team needs to do its job. And the leader has to make sure that all of the stakeholders involved are having the right conversations especially when those conversations involve competing values and priorities.
And all the while the leader is leveraging the talents and passions of the individual team members.
When we think about all the work a team leader must do, we define eight priority tasks which every team leader must be accountable for:
- Build rapport and create a safe environment for everyone. Team members don’t have to be best friends but they must hold mutual respect and be able to communicate clearly and honestly.
- Define reality by distinguishing between tactical, strategic, and truly Transformational issues.
- Engage the real issues, not the peripheral ones.
- Reframe seemingly unsolvable problems into ones that can be solved.
- Manage personal baggage, fears, ego, and anxiety.
- Make sure that any conflict that arises is about competing values alone, and not about personalities, side issues, or warring egos.
- Initiate change at a rate that can be tolerated.
- Mobilize the team to do the work themselves by providing the needed resources and asking the right questions.
If this list sounds challenging, it’s because it is!
But it’s not impossible. And it is thrilling when it all comes together.
At TAG we are committed to teams and leaders of teams. From leadership coaching to help you navigate tough decisions and conflicts, to workshops which will reveal and highlight the talents of your team members and how they come together, to cutting edge facilitation and learning for all levels of teams in your organization, we are here to help your organization move from good to great.
Find out more here – and lead with passion and purpose!