Everybody knows building a high performance team is not your average walk in the park. A team that is reaching for the stars together is a team that thrives, but often it’s hard to turn things around when your team is becoming more disloyal then loyal.
Loyalist teams are the teams that can be best-described as well oiled machines. Their productivity is on a high level and they have the results to prove it. When a team turns into a disloyal one, or was disloyal from the start, you can recognize them by the stress that comes from micromanaging, the team forming cliques and the tendency to finger point when something didn’t go according to plan.
At Clay we’ve managed to build a loyalist team, a team that is supportive of their team members as well as their common goal, therefore we want to share five top tips for turning a toxic team into a healthy one.
Making mistakes is the fastest way to learn. If you happen to have an efficient team that rolls with the punches that is.
Culture fit In order to create a loyalist team, you need to begin with the basics. When a company has a clear view of how the team needs to function it’s necessary to look beyond work performance and make sure a new hire fits the company culture. At Clay, we always strive to find potential Bricks that fit our profile of friendly, honest, slightly crazy technology lovers and game changers. People, who have a voice, can take a joke and be willing to grow and evolve. We always involve Bricks that will be working closely with the new hire in the interview process so they can help to make the onboarding process a success. It’s a good idea to ask how a new hire feels about working within a tight team, how they naturally take on collaborating with colleagues and let them know what is expected of them so both parties can decide whether this is the right match.
Trust Trust is one of the most important aspects within a loyalist team. Almost anything can be built successfully from that solid foundation of trust. Practice positive intent among your team on a daily basis by assuming your coworkers always have your best interests at heart. When trust has been built and is a solid factor within the team all success becomes a team effort. This makes individuals work together more efficiently without personal grudges holding them back. A team that is built on trust brings a healthy atmosphere and the best out of any new hire.
Challenge each other Knowing there’s room for mistakes and trust to fall back on enables employees to feel at ease and make them feel more comfortable challenging each other. It comes to no surprise that employees who (respectfully) challenge each other to step up their game, learn quicker and try their best all the time are more likely to deliver great results. An inspiring atmosphere is a common side effect of employees who challenge each other, which makes work more fun and therefore healthy!
Learn from mistakes …and then move on. You basically set yourself up for failure when you never make a mistake, but when you do, learn from it and then move on. In a loyalist team there’s no time wasted on dwelling on past mistakes. When challenging yourself and your teammates it’s bound to happen something goes not quite as planned. Don’t panic when a mistake has been made. Find out together where in the process it went wrong, adjust the sails and continue the journey. Making mistakes is the fastest way to learn. If you happen to have an efficient team that rolls with the punches that is.
Talk it out Don’t be afraid to give and receive feedback. Have heated discussions and don't shy away from any topic. Enabling an environment where people know how to speak up instead of keeping quiet or talking about teammates behind their back will improve performance tremendously. At Clay we use the retrospective meeting at the end of each Sprint to find out what feedback the Bricks have. This helps us to remind ourselves to always keep a critical eye on our process, but also to compliment each other.
In loyalist teams employees tend to feel challenged, inspired and supported by their teammates at all times. They are engaged with, and passionate about, their work and have fun while doing it.
Being a loyalist team is not a destination to get to as fast as possible, but a way of working. This way of working should always be strived for. Read more about loyalist teams here!
Want to be a part of Clay’s loyalist team of Bricks? Take a look at our career page!