Collaboration is key for a business to thrive
When you’re building a small business, it’s tempting to do everything yourself — from hiring and managing employees to analyzing your cash flow and from ordering supplies to dealing with vendors and marketing consultants. But if you want your business to thrive, you’re going to need to rely on your team.
First off, realize that management is about more than just delegating and holding employees accountable. One of the biggest responsibilities that managers face is creating team cohesion, and enabling and empowering employees to do their best work.
This is easier said than done – especially with all the other management tasks that come across our paths day to day. Here are some of the easiest and most effective ways to help build a more collaborative team.
- Communicate: Plan to have regular update meetings. Meeting once a week as a group to briefly discuss what everyone’s working on can help give your team a more holistic perspective. Additionally, it’s a good opportunity to let your team know about the business as a whole and help them feel more connected to the overall objectives of the company.
- Schedule downtime: You don’t have to wait for a company sponsored team-building event. There are small, inexpensive ways to help your team foster connection and boost collaboration. Scheduling an after-work event, for instance, might be an easy, low-pressure way to gather, talk, and learn about each other.
- Think of creative ways to show support: You don’t have to throw a parade for every achievement, but make sure to check in regularly with employees to let them know you appreciate their contributions and their efforts both individually and as a team.
- Never play favorites: This might seem obvious, but it’s impossible to have a cohesive team if the business owner is gossiping or talking negatively about one member of the team to another. Even if a team member comes up to you with a complaint about someone, remain neutral and look for solutions that benefit the whole team.
Every manager has a different leadership style, of course, but no matter how you lead your team, it’s important to foster unity and make the time to ensure that your team feels connected to each other and to the business you are building together.