managing high performance teams at work

Managing high performance teams at work means learning what each member of your team does and how their work affects your job and the company’s performance.  Unfortunately, at work, managers tend to focus only on their own daily job and activities. Since we all have a limited amount of time during the day to get our work done and keep on schedule, it can be difficult to step outside of our own responsibilities to look at what other team members do each day. But to be a great leader and improve how you manage high performance teams, try to set some time aside each week to learn something about what your team’s jobs are, which contribute to the function of the company. By being curious at work and learning what another team member does can help you better understand the team member’s role within the company, how they feel at work, and strengthen your working relationship with them.

This working knowledge can also highlight areas that may need improving via better team collaboration, technological infrastructure improvements, or simply providing praise for work previously underappreciated. A high performing team leader should also be able to help fix issues that come up. But if you don’t know what your team does, then how are you going to help fix any problems? Ask yourself, do I know how to manage an issue if a team member goes on holiday or quits?

How Do Things Work at Your Job?

“If you don’t know why it’s working well when it’s working well, you can’t fix it when it breaks.” Andy Stanley, senior pastor of North Point Community Church

Candidly, there are a lot of things in my world that I’m not sure how they work.

I get in a car and push a button, I hope it works.

I flip a switch on my heater/air conditioner, I hope it does the right thing.

The list goes on and on.

But, taken in context to our jobs where we rely on it going well to do well, Stanley’s observation makes some sense.

7 Important Questions For Managing High Performing Teams

  1. Are you a student at your job?
  2. Are you a student at the organization?
  3. Do you understand how exactly your job fits into the larger scope of your organization’s function?
  4. Have you thought about how your performance contributes to the organization?
  5. Are you learning more each day about your job and what other departments do in relation to your job?
  6. Is there something you could know that you don’t know that could help matters when things go wrong?
  7. Are you expanding your knowledge at work beyond just your daily duties?

It serves us well to have each of us get better at performing our job.  It helps us when you learn at a deeper level of how your tools work.  It speeds things up when you don’t have to wait for others to fix it when it breaks.

Don’t get me wrong.  Safety is critical.  You shouldn’t wander into unknown areas that could hurt you. But, express knowledge to know more and learn more at work. It’s a path to excellence.

To get more tips on how to be better at work and in life, check out Howe Q. Wallace’s field guide on Amazon.