Management Matters: Shine the Spotlight on Your Team

New skills are almost always called for when you are a professional, no matter how experience you may be. It can be easy to learn what to do, but how to do it may be a little murky. Effectively leading a team is made up of a many skills and you may be challenged by not only your own experience as by the individual team members as well, to achieve the successful outcomes everyone is eager to obtain.

If the members of your team can integrate their skills to accentuate strengths and minimize weaknesses, then team objectives often can be achieved efficiently. It’s wonderful when you lead a team that only requires that you check in for updates, provide encouragement, and support in obtaining resources and minimizing possible roadblocks.

If however, the members of the team keep their focus on what works best for ONLY them (or their department/team), it’s more likely that you are all headed for failure. When genuine teamwork is lacking, the successful manager will identify where the problems are and often will provide improvement feedback in order to change things until the desired results are achieved.

Many leaders however don’t recognize how to transform their group into a highly productive team. Problems can go unnoticed. Encouragement and feedback can be slow in coming.Genuine and proactive tam leadership on the part of the leader is called for. There are definitely some things you can do to keep the focus on the team and its’ efforts in achieving successful outcomes

You keep the spotlight on your team if you:

•     Share your vision with others and act accordingly.

•     Exhibit your personal style and are proactive in relationships, stimulating excitement,         action, and mutual support.

•     Get everyone involved and committed.

•     Make it easy for others to see opportunities that call for teamwork.

•     Allow people to perform.

•    Look for people who want to excel and can work constructively with others.

•    See your role as the person who encourages and facilitates proactive behavior.

•    Consider problem solving the responsibility of every member on the team.

•    Communicate fully, openly, honestly, and frequently

•    Welcome questions.

•    Allow the team to do its' own thing.

•    Mediate conflict/friction before it becomes destructive and derails the team members.

•    Make an effort to see that both individual and team accomplishments are recognized.

•    Keep commitments and expect the same in return.

If you don’t see the outcomes from your team that you were hoping for, before you blame the team members, look in the mirror and ask if you are shining the spotlight in the right place.

Joni Daniels is Principal of Daniels & Associates, a management training and development consulting practice that specializes in developing human resources in the areas of leadership and management training, interpersonal effectiveness and efficiency, skill- building, and organizational development interventions. With over 25 years of experience, she is a sought after resource for Fortune 500 clients, professional organizations, higher education, media outlets and business publications. Joni can be reached at

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