As I coach leaders around the world and in all kinds of industries, I always find it fascinating to gather as much data as I can. One question I often ask my clients is “What are the obstacles you encounter in working to create a great team?” Here are the four barriers that are cited most often:
Corporate bureaucracy. Having to work around bureaucracy is one of the top issues I hear about from clients. Why does everything have to be so complicated? While many companies are turning to more flexible models, far too many are still being run as old-fashioned bureaucracies. It’s a structure that stifles creativity, innovation and motivation. It foster blind spots and dehumanizes an organization’s culture. Building a strong team in a bureaucracy is an uphill battle. Any time you’re able to advocate for adopting a more modern structure, give it your all. Meanwhile, you’ll have lots of opportunities to practice patience.
Lack of resources and talent. Many companies can’t properly manage their resources or their people. They don’t know which assets are available or best suited to the task at hand. As a result, resources and talent are spread too thin, causing projects to be understaffed and underequipped. The result? A system of inefficiencies that forces teams to put in longer hours to meet project goals, leading to burnout and frustration. Do what you can within your own team to make sure resources and people are well managed.
Lack of clear direction. Without clear direction and priorities, people don’t know what they should be doing. They aren’t sure what’s urgent or important, and without a big-picture view they end up jumping from one task and one crisis to another. As the leader of your team, you need clear direction from those above you so you can pass it along. If that isn’t happening, provide as much structure and information to your people as you can. A direction that energizes, orients, and engages them will be the foundation of their best work. Teams can’t be inspired if they don’t know what they’re working toward.
External market factors. Effective leaders know how to minimize discouragement and promote positive dynamics. But even the best can’t control market factors and other external issues. There will always be outside factors that impact your team’s work, but by working to build effective controls and a strategic approach you can empower them to bring their best in any situation.
At the bottom line, building a great team requires strategy. With careful planning, you can set the right direction, allocate the right resources and talent, and work as effectively as possible around the corporate and external factors you can’t control. Whatever the situation, your strong leadership can drive your team to deliver impactful success.
Lead from within: If you want a great team, eliminate the obstacles that get in their way, so they can stand in their greatness.
#1 N A T I O N A L B E S T S E L L E R
The Leadership Gap
What Gets Between You and Your Greatness
After decades of coaching powerful executives around the world, Lolly Daskal has observed that leaders rise to their positions relying on a specific set of values and traits. But in time, every executive reaches a point when their performance suffers and failure persists. Very few understand why or how to prevent it.
Additional Reading you might enjoy:
- 12 Successful Leadership Principles That Never Grow Old
- A Leadership Manifesto: A Guide To Greatness
- How to Succeed as A New Leader
- 12 of The Most Common Lies Leaders Tell Themselves
- 4 Proven Reasons Why Intuitive Leaders Make Great Leaders
- The One Quality Every Leader Needs To Succeed
- The Deception Trap of Leadership
Of Lolly’s many awards and accolades, Lolly was designated a Top-50 Leadership and Management Expert by Inc. magazine. Huffington Post honored Lolly with the title of The Most Inspiring Woman in the World. Her writing has appeared in HBR, Inc.com, Fast Company (Ask The Expert), Huffington Post, and Psychology Today, and others. Her newest book, The Leadership Gap: What Gets Between You and Your Greatness has become a national bestseller.