TEN TOP TIPS : How to Build a Management Team

Have you ever worked as part of high-performance team, or have you ever watched high-performance sports or professional team in action? Most of you will say yes – which means that you probably know lot about management teams intuitively. What follows is reminder, or recipe, of some effective and common sense approaches to building high-performance management team – an action which can make dramatic impact on your business.
Building management team is two-step process. Step one is to hire brilliantly. You need to start with the best raw materials. Step two is to manage brilliantly. If you want the benefits of synergy and teamwork, you need to set the stage for success by measuring and encouraging the right behaviours.
To hire brilliantly, first realise that there’s huge difference between an A+ player and B+ player, especially in key positions such as leadership, finance, and sales. To manage brilliantly is to create the structure and systems that result in culture of excellence in which teamwork is expected and necessary. You can hire world-class talent, but to get the best out of people requires that you challenge people, improve your processes, become learning organisation, and get people working together to create synergy.
The following will explore how you can do both.

Five Tips to Hiring Brilliantly

Plan strategically
Think long-term about your business. What business are you in? Why are you in business? What are the intermediate and long-term goals? What are your strategies to achieve these goals? Gaining clarity around these questions will enable you to explain your business to customers, employees, and prospective new team members.

Think synergy
In building team, think about the skill and knowledge mix you’ll need to achieve your goals. Identify the gaps and plan to fill them. The basic functions are sales, sourcing, supply chain, marketing, and finance. You might also consider acquisitions, learning, and information management as key areas. Make sure your team has these areas covered, and allow some overlap to promote synergy and teaming.

Engage others
When planning your staffing needs, involve your existing team. Solicit and use their input regarding the knowledge, skills, and attributes needed. Involve people during the interview stage. Gaining buy-in during the selection process is the first step in building teamwork.

Hire forward
Plan to hire people with the level and skills you’ll need not just now, but three years from now. Hiring forward will ensure that you are acquiring the skills and smarts to manage the business not just as it is today, but as it will be.

Recruit smart
Hire the best. Hiring A+ players is never easy. You’ll need comprehensive strategy of networking, referrals and smart ads. recruiter you can trust, who knows your niche and marketplace, can be valuable asset in building your management team.

Five Tips to Managing Brilliantly

Challenge people
Set high expectations. Empower people to achieve big things. Research shows that setting high expectations leads to better outcomes. Make sure the challenges are lofty, but achievable. Stretch people and teams by giving them assignments that require learning and growth as well as hard work.

Manage processes
Identify the owners of your key business processes in order to build accountability. Look for ways to improve processes by identifying the process steps and removing unnecessary delays and non-value-added activity. Establish process measures. If it’s worth doing it’s worth measuring. Build culture of continual improvement.

Work together
Encourage teamwork and collaboration. Establish team projects and goals. Teamwork is based on task interdependence and outcome interdependence. Task interdependence means that people are working together toward common goal, and that each person is fulfilling an important role. Outcome interdependence means that the team flies, or falls, as one. Consider team-based incentives.

Share feedback
High-performance teams allow feedback to flow in every direction. Building high-performance learning organisation is based on feedback and capturing the lessons learned in terms of what’s working well and what can be improved. Everyone has voice. Every opinion counts.

Have fun
Celebrate the wins, even the little wins along the way. Build culture that shows concern for people as well as concern for results. “Take care of people, and people will take care of customers,” is philosophy embraced by many high-performing management teams. Profits will follow.

By implementing these 10 ideas, you’ll be well on your way to building category-defining management team. You’ll hire the best possible talent and set the stage for success by managing the right things and creating the right environment.

Roger Branch is associate director of Kinross Recruitment, an Auckland-based boutique recruitment firm that builds management teams for high-growth businesses. www.kinross.co.nz

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