Converting Employees Into Team Members

Why don’t my employees to take more ownership? Why do so many people today have an entitlement mentality? How can I get my workers to care more about their job? I think everyone here just works for a paycheck!

Can you relate to these questions and observations? I hear comments like these all the time. I do have a good sense of the source of the problem. It is a lack of strong leadership. You respond, “Are you saying that I am the reason that my people are not stepping up?” In a word, yes.

The reality is that you have the team you deserve. If you want a better team, you must learn how to recruit and develop team members. Begin with this question. Do you have the right people on the bus? I didn’t ask if they were good people. I didn’t even ask if they were talented people. I asked if they were the right people for your bus. These two questions from Jim Collins, author of “Good to Great”, will help you determine if you have the right people on your bus.

· Question #1 – If this person left your business today, would you feel really good, or really bad?

· Question #2 – If you knew when you hired this person what you know about them now, would you hire them today?

Your answers to those questions will help you determine if you have the right person on your bus. If you have a wrong person on your bus, helping them get off your bus is an act of kindness. If they are a long-term loyal person, you can offer them a generous severance that could enable them to retire early or find a more suitable job elsewhere. If they are a non-compliant employee, you can properly document the non-compliance and move to dismissal. There are many considerations when deciding if and then when to take a person off the bus. It’s not always easy, but if you want a world class business, you must have the right people on the bus!

Once you have the right people, then it is time to determine the best seat for each of them. It is your responsibility as the leader to build a team around the strengths of each member. It is crucial to create, define, and clearly communicate each role in the business including measurable accountabilities. This can be documented on an accountability chart. As the leader, you must be diligent to transform all expectations (yours and theirs) into clear agreements and commitments.

A winning team has a strong leader that communicates and inspires a common vision, mission and values. The leader must be sure that each team member knows their role, how they are going to be measured and compensated, and then facilitate the creation of a clear action plan and system to get the mission accomplished.

The right people in the right seats embracing the vision, living the values, and fulfilling the mission. Are you ready to make it happen?

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