"Great things in business are never done by one person. They're done by a team of people."
--- Steve Jobs
So much has been written about the value of teams and how developing a great team translates to increased creativity, increased productivity, and increased profits. All of this is true. The problem is that there isn't a lot of information about how to create a great team and how to keep a team working together as a finely tuned and well-oiled machine.
Simply putting together a few employees and telling them to work on a project doesn't always produce the desired results. A team in business, like a team in sports, has to have three key ingredients: energy, direction, and focus. If all three are in place, the team will find a way to be ultra productive. Team members will feed off one another, inspire one another, and work together to achieve the end results. But they must have those three pieces in order to produce.
"Growing up in a group home, and with an undiagnosed learning disability to boot, the odds of success were not on my side. But when I joined the high school football team, I learned the value of discipline, focus, persistence, and teamwork - all skills that have proven vital to my career as a C.E.O. and social entrepreneur."
--- Darell Hammond
Once you've screened, interviewed and brought the right team member on board, the next step is to give that person direction. When he or she is put together with other, well-qualified employees, team dynamics begin to form. You don't have to designate a group as a team, you simply give them the direction put them on the project and give them the direction that they need.
"Teamwork is what the Green Bay Packers were all about. They didn't do it for individual glory. They did it because they loved one another."
--- Vince Lombardi
Fostering the team spirit will come naturally when employees learn from you what tasks need to be completed and how you, or the organization expects them to be handled. Imparting your wisdom and the mission of the company to the individual team members is usually all that is needed. It's true that many organizations embark on team exercises and retreats to build cohesiveness, and that is all fine, but once the "qualified" employee grasps the company concept and its values, they should be ready to hit the ground running. Any other team building rah-rah stuff is simply icing.
"I spend a lot of time building teams at both businesses - both The Trump Organization and my own - and thinking about who to hire to supplement the team and allow us to best achieve our goals."
--- Ivanka Trump
Your qualified employees will have the energy. You will provide the direction. The mission, vision, and values of your company will provide the focus. Keep those statements in the forefront and your team will have no doubts of what is expected.
"A key to achieving success is to assemble a strong and stable management team."
--- Vivek Wadhwa
The team spirit begins by establishing a team system from the top down. If you are a one person show, illustrate the team dynamics by example using you and your employees as the foundation of a team. If a leadership force is in place, use those members to form a team and to lead by example. Show your employees how a good team should look and act.
"One of the most important things we do is we've organized our stores and our workforce into teams."
--- John Mackey
Whether yours is a small or large shop, illustrate the importance of teamwork. Share stories of how vital it is that we all lean on one another as we work in unison toward a common goal. Tell your team members that there is strength in numbers and that when we all strive together, we are stronger and more successful than if we act alone.
Stressless Distressed: Creating Your Own Distressed Graphic Files
By Marshall Atkinson
This article is all about creating easy-to-use distressed pattern files to add some pizzazz to your graphics. Nothing fancy, just solid technique. If you have ever bought a distressed pattern, you are going to wonder why you wasted your money after you read this. Creating your own gives you the control, but also puts your creative spin on the design aesthetic.
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