Managing high performance teams
Steve Jobs was quoted as saying “It doesn't make sense to hire smart people and tell them what to do; we hire smart people so they can tell us what to do.” Once you have hired a bunch of really smart people, you need to manage them effectively.
High performing people tend to take pride in their work, they want to grow and develop throughout their careers. In order to manage them effectively, you need to redistribute decision-making. A top-down, hierarchical approach to management may be ineffective because the best employees tend to know more about their area of expertise than their managers do. As such, you need to give people some autonomy so that they can effectively self-manage.
The best performing businesses tend to have flatter organisation structures. Information is shared more openly across the business and people are able to make decisions more quickly as a result.
In a high performance organisation, managers need to provide support and demonstrate leadership through teamwork. The best managers tend to be able to bring people with them.
They do this by building strong relationships with their teams and through effective communication. In creating a culture of teamwork, managers can align the individual objectives of each team member with the overall goals of the business. Where there is misalignment, good managers will work with the individual to agree a compromise.
If you want to be a really effective manager and create a high performance team, you need to be a good listener. Ask your team members for their view on how to best get a piece of work done. This shows the team that their opinions and expertise are valued. The best leaders listen to the ideas and insights from their people and allow them the space to implement those ideas.
Everyone wants to perform meaningful work and enjoy being involved with interesting projects. If opportunities are given by a manager who takes the time to create strong relationships with people, the team can be more effective and innovative than ever.