Building a Team, Office, Culture, and Destination

By the time you complete this series, you should have a better understanding of where you are, where you are going, why you are doing it, and a road map as to how you’ll do it. As with anything else, it will take practice. Always remember, you can’t do it on your own, it takes the collective effort of you and your team to meet and exceed your goals.

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Section I. Where You Are

Before we start to dig deep into recruiting, talent acquisition, and growth; it is best to evaluate and assess our current opportunities. In other words, clean your house before you invite guests. There are at least 12 areas of focus for your current office.

Focus 1.   Leadership

Leadership is perhaps THE MOST IMPORTANT aspect of any business, including your office and/or team.

You are the captain steering the ship. All others seek you out, most often in their time of need, crisis, or to use you as a fire extinguisher. Your ideas, attitude, ethics, and persistence will ideally reflect on and in your team on a daily basis.

In a business environment, which revolves around competitive advantage, there is always the most important common denominator – YOU. You determine the future of your team.

Leadership is different from management style, so it is important to recognize the difference.

What is your management or leadership style? We’ll discuss three of the more common styles.

The Boss

  • You run things your way or the highway.
  • When you tell someone what to do, you tell them how to do it, without room for interpretation or improvisation.   This is referred to in management studies as an autocratic method, in which you exert total control and little to no negotiation.
  • Although this style may be needed in times of crisis or in a business which deals with rank, it often times leaves employees feeling like you do not value them or their input.
  • You will often time see high turnover of lower ranking employees.

The Listener

Have you ever heard of someone listening themselves out of a sale?

  • You value input from your employees prior to making a decision.
  • Employees often times have multiple channels to provide you feedback, such as surveys and roundtables.
  • Your employees are engaged because they have stake in the game.
  • Employee enthusiasm is high and leads to higher levels of success and lower levels of turnover.
  • The drawback? It can take a long time to get everyone on board if an outcome doesn’t please everyone, thus potentially leading to missed opportunities.

The Ambassador

A more democratic style of management, you assign tasks or initiatives and allow your employees the opportunity to figure out problems and solve based on their own intuitions.

  • When it comes to decisions, you rely on a popular opinion from all your delegates.
  • Employee self-esteem is high, as is morale.
  • Employees are engaged and have a sense of belonging.
  • Your turnover is often low.
  • As with the Listener, decisions may often take more time to come to fruition.
  • The most important part of this culture is highly qualified delegates. You must have entrepreneurial, progressive leaders. Otherwise, you may encounter lack of motivation and poorly defined duties.

So, which style are you? If you answered a combination, congrats, you understand the importance of all the above.

To use a Sun Tzu reference from MBA studies, The Boss wins in times of war, a Listener gets his/her strength from consensus, and the Ambassador enables potential.