Invest in Your Team


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As organizations continue to go through their transformational challenges, many are finally getting around to those components that will most greatly influence and affect their success – investing in their team. During the chaos of the turbulent economic state the primary focus of many was survivalist one – reactive to profit, sales, bottom line obsessions.

Now that many businesses have stripped the organization clean of anything that could possibly be viewed as excess, they are coming to the harsh reality that business growth isn’t occurring as needed or desired. The new reality is that existing customers aren’t very loyal and new clients simply aren’t jumping in the boat. What these organizations have finally discovered is their teams are more important to growth and stability than they realized.

Unfortunately, the organizational transgressions of the past few years have fostered a jaded, bitter, burned out, and disjointed workforce. While a strong, collaborative internal and external client facing team is critical to the future success of any organization, the events of the past has jeopardized and fragmented all those essential relationships.

In today’s economic climate, there is still tremendous opportunity to build strong client and employee relationships. However, the key to these opportunities is dependent upon the committed investment the organization makes in developing and reconnecting their team. Maximizing this return on investment in rebuilding their teams are founded in the following critical areas:

  1. Talent: While over 60% (some figures are as high as 75%) of those currently employed are actively searching for a new professional opportunity; it does not mean they will simply make a move just because. Attracting and retaining top talent requires an understanding of what the organization offers future employees in terms of development, growth, professional and financial gain, etc. If your business does not have a process for evaluating, attracting, developing, and rewarding talent you will have a tough time bringing the right people into your firm. Worse, you will have even a tougher time keeping them if the environment is not what they desire.
  2. Time: Merely telling your current and future employees they are critically important to the success of the firm will fall on deaf ears. Owners have trampled on the trust and dreams of their team. Rebuilding that trust is going to take a focused, committed and consistent effort over time. Team building is not a strategy du jour; if it is, your team will sense it and not engage. Effective team building requires a structure, a process, a clear commitment and an investment in the time necessary for everyone in the organization to embrace the transitional commitment and the celebrate the associated results. While business owners obsess over unrealistic expectations for immediate results – employees don’t respect, accept, appreciate, or benefit from the instant gratification exercises. If you cannot invest the time, you will not get the results.
  3. Training: Team building within an organization takes many shapes, involves many levels, and requires an organized educational effort. Simply offering classroom training on processes or key performance programs is only a small part of the training effort. Effective and valued training is really a commitment to the education and development of everyone on the team. Productive curriculum programs include: communication effectiveness; empowerment and accountability; leadership and leadership development; strategy and collaboration; customer service and support; and, customized personal professional development programs. While most firms are not able to offer all these programs using internal resources, the process of educating the team in a comprehensive manner demonstrates a sincere and real commitment to development most valued team-members desire.

Business organizations cannot correct the mistakes of the past. However, they need not look to far to discover what other firms experiencing significant growth successes have done. Successful companies have invested significantly in attracting, developing, and engaging their empowered, collaborative and innovative teams. It is not too late to embrace their model of success. In fact, it is more necessary and critical than ever. The cost of client and employee churn, in conjunction with the financial gains in productivity and performance, more than offset the investment cost. Engage and build your team – invest in developing them and celebrate the results of your efforts!

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Dave Cooke
I leverage my 25 years experience in sales and marketing to create and implement strategic initiatives and develop educational programs that increase both revenues and profits. I take great pride in my experience in turbulent, chaotic, and transitional work environments. It is from these experiences that I have developed my commitment to collaborative teams, strong internal and external relationships, effective communication, decisive leadership, and a cohesive, collaborative strategy as keys to sustainable revenue growth.


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