The Ugly Duckling of Leadership - How Alignment is the forgotten tool of Teams' success.
Leading successful teams requires balancing multiple key areas at the same time.
Some of them always come as a focal point, and are deemed important to get right by most companies I speak with.
Time management and prioritization to boost the team’s output and performance
Effective delegation that allows tasks to be assigned to team members based on their individual strengths and abilities.
Accountability that ensures that each team member is held responsible for their assigned tasks and results.
There is a last critical piece that too often stays behind, Alignment
Business alignment is a key factor to success and growth. It is essential for organizations - and teams - to ensure that their goals, objectives, and vision are aligned with each other.
A bunch of individuals working together is often called a team
Alignment among them is always taken for granted, but it is the key component that brings cohesion between all tasks and projects done by each member and makes them a team!
There are 3 main misconceptions you might want to reflect on:
1. Assume the team knows its purpose. Do you really know why your team exists within the company? Do you constantly share that with each team member until they are sick of hearing it? If not, you are probably not clear enough.
Not having a vision is like jumping on a boat for a very long trip, with no idea where it is going. Vision should explain clearly what you want to create, and tell your team how you want to get there. This becomes and easy to reference North Stars to remember what they are doing and why.
2. Manage only individual performance. You should not confuse performance with goals: these are critical to objectively assess whether the team is going in the right direction.
OKRs and KPIs should be established in order to track progress towards goals that are relevant for the whole team, if the team is too large you should consider breaking those down into sub-team, but It should always be clear how they relate to the company’s ones.
You can also use cross-team OKRs to create alignment, but individual goals are best to be set only for accountability on personal growth.
3. Inflate meetings to ensure everyone feels included. Communication =/= meetings There is a lot of talk about people missing critical information, and this translates into solving it with information overload.
With more companies going remote we have seen a tendency of trying to substitute in-person time with more emails, chats and meetings. On average 50% of meeting time is dedicated to information that can be shared separately and accessed asynchronously.
It is important for companies to set up regular meetings where only the shareholders are present in order to discuss overarching goals, decision making and project advancement.
Following these three tips ensures you are working towards a common trajectory and achieving success together.
Are you wondering if your team is set for success in all important areas? Get your guide to quickly assess where you are stuck and what you should tackle first