The Final Four is set. The Michigan State Spartans defeated Duke University to capture the last regional championship and secure their place in the national semifinals with the other regional champions in the NCAA Men’s Division I Basketball Tournament. Michigan State, Texas Tech, Virginia, and Auburn will compete in the semifinals this weekend, with two of those teams vying for the national championship shortly thereafter in the single-elimination tournament that many sports enthusiasts view as the greatest athletic tournament in the world.
What many people find so fascinating about this tournament is the large field of teams from all conferences that are brought together to compete at sites across the country. Every team that makes it to “The Big Dance” has some talent, but the various styles and strengths of each team often makes for interesting and unique matchups as teams progress through the brackets. Some teams are built around veteran leaders while others are stocked with talented underclassmen. Some teams impose their will on other teams with stifling defense and rebounding; some are known for their outside shooting; others try to wear their opponents down with precision offensive sets or up-tempo play.
The point is that there are a variety of ways to build a championship-caliber basketball team. The same is true in business. However, there are certain steps or stages that most winning teams work through before experiencing success, and leaders who know how to get the most from their teams at each stage of the process can expect to see greater returns in the future. Let’s take a brief look at five phases of developmental maturation that will take your team to new heights and how we can get through each stage.
Stage One: Understanding Your Potential
Discover how to build on your current strengths while also identifying and developing your untapped potential. Cultivating self-motivation and a positive self-image will help you and your team members realize the rewards of personal leadership. Craft well articulated goals to provide a clear vision and direction for the organization.
Stage Two: Increasing Motivation Through Attitudes and Habits
Altering habits and attitudes to enhance performance while neutralizing demotivators is an important step toward fostering a winning culture. Applying traditional approaches to improving motivation is important, but it is also important to find different ways of satisfying the needs of team members. Establishing new, more effective work habits and attitudes is an essential early step toward achieving organizational goals.
Stage Three: Building a Winning Culture
Maximize your team’s talent by putting individuals in positions for which they are ideally suited; doing so will bring desirable results and instill confidence throughout the organization. Provide personal rewards for high achievers, and find ways to invigorate and elevate those who may be struggling. Winning breeds winning, so making this a priority will create greater cohesion and move the company forward.
Stage Four: Improving Productivity and Results Through Communication
Teams who reach the summit do so by developing remarkable chemistry. Focus on understanding effective communication concepts. Sharpen your interpersonal communication skills and those of your associates. Improving oral, written, and listening skills will lead to a more successful team.
Step Five: Increasing Productivity and Results Through Improved Efficiency
Once you have procedures in place and experienced, capable people performing roles within your system(s), look to foster a learning environment within your organization. Creating and cultivating self-directed work teams within your organizational structure can improve your company’s efficiency. Implementing meeting strategies and developing better training techniques can also help your team reach its optimal potential.
Winning squads can meet their goals in many different ways. Nevertheless, there are characteristics that championship teams share and principles that they follow, and one commonality is that it takes time to build an effective organization. Successful groups must go through stages of development in order to thrive, so following this blueprint for prosperity may help your business achieve victory in the end.
Need help developing your business team into a positive force within your organization? We can help! Leadership Excellence helps small and medium-sized businesses in Cleveland, Medina, and surrounding areas develop their leadership teams and grow their businesses. Contact us online or give Greg a call at (330) 722- 8764 today.