A new beginning is in store for us as the new year begins. To make the most of this opportunity, you should get your team ready as soon as possible.
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The year 2022 was full of difficulties that had not been anticipated. The combination of out-of-control inflation, war-related shortages of energy and food, and rising interest rates made 2022 the most volatile year for the economy of the United States since 2008 when the Great Recession hit.
However, even though 2022 will be over, our problems will still be here. If there is one thing that the previous year has taught us, it is that we do not know what the year 2023 will bring and that we are unable to control the caprices of the wider world. However, we can support the physical well-being of our teams. No matter what new challenges 2023 may bring, as leaders, we need to begin preparing our teams as soon as possible to enter the new year with energy, focus, and motivation. This is true regardless of what new opportunities the new year may bring.
Refill Your Tank
Because of the ebbs and flows of business, we frequently have to make layoffs to restore a healthy company. Leaders are accustomed to making difficult decisions. The impact, however, that these reductions have on the people who are still a part of our team is something that we frequently fail to acknowledge. After the past few years, numerous individuals are experiencing feelings of exhaustion and emotional weariness, and they are unsure of when that glimmer of hope will finally emerge. As we get closer to the finish line, our engines are beginning to sputter, but we will need a full gas tank in 2023.
Take a few moments out of your day to check in with every member of your team, as straightforward as that may sound. You will have a better idea of how much gas is still left in the tank and what you must do to help each other refuel if you attempt to comprehend their context. This will ensure that your team is prepared to go full speed ahead once the new year begins.
Finding a Happy Medium Between Culture and Productivity
Even though the past few years have completely turned life as we knew it on its head, there is no need to start from scratch when it comes to putting together effective teams. No matter if we are living in the year 2003 or 2023, the components of a successful team have not changed. The leaders of businesses need to focus on improving both the culture of their teams and their productivity.
The collective emotional experience of our team is referred to as the team culture. This includes all of our interpersonal relationships as well as the atmosphere that is produced as a result of our interactions. In contrast, team productivity refers to the degree to which we can achieve our goals effectively and efficiently as a group.
When there is a high level of productivity but not enough of a focus on team culture, employees may experience feelings of exhaustion and resentment. On the other hand, employees might not be able to perform up to their full potential when their teams have an excessive amount of culture but insufficient levels of team productivity.
Both of these outcomes leave us open to attack from our rivals: dissatisfied employees leaving the company in search of a more satisfying culture, or our team becoming complacent and falling behind on the most recent innovations in our industry. It is the responsibility of the team leader to ensure that their teams maximize both their culture and their levels of productivity.
This should result in the employees being able to feel supported, cared for, and connected, as well as inspired and motivated to move the ball forward. Our group will not have the vitality we need to achieve our goals in 2023 if we are unable to strike a balance between our productivity and our culture.
The Work Done regularly
There is a multitude of articles that provide a theoretical discussion on the significance of culture and efficiency. What can we do daily to make sure that both aspects are functioning at their best?
Let’s begin with the culture of the team
Consider the following question: When was the previous time you gathered the members of your team? If you can’t recall, now is the time to start trying. If it is at all possible, get together in person so that you can talk face to face. Nevertheless, whether you choose to hold the meeting in person or online, you should make sure that the conversation goes beyond trust falls and other exercises in team-building that are covered in leadership 101. To be able to reflect on the past and plan for the future, we need to have a conversation that is robust and honest, and we need to facilitate that conversation. If you’re searching for a playbook, there are three components that are necessary:
Completing a year-end review of your experiences is required
Before we can move forward into the future, we need to have a solid understanding of our history.
Honor the achievements of your team
Despite challenges and uncertainty, the victories we’ve had in the past, no matter how big or how small, can encourage us to keep going.
You should direct your focus toward the future
Questions such as “What are our objectives, and how will we accomplish them together?” and “Which group behavior patterns will set us up for success?” should be asked. To support everyone in the coming year, establish some principles of operation and shared agreements.
The productivity of our team will increase once our goals are crystal clear
If the team does not have a distinct objective that they are working toward together, they will disperse and run in different directions like chickens with their head chopped off. As soon as that is established, we will be able to direct all of our efforts toward the same goal, and the way that we need to proceed to get there will become immediately apparent.
After a purpose has been identified, the leaders of the team should collaborate with the members of the team to identify priorities and develop strategies that are derived from the purpose. However, we are not going to be able to deal with everything at once, and we need to be careful not to put too much pressure on ourselves. Whenever it comes to making changes that stick, less can be more.
In conclusion, the importance of clear and effective dialogue cannot be exaggerated. Miscommunications have been known to start wars, and our team members are not invulnerable to such missteps, particularly in this day and age of a remote workforce that is becoming increasingly globalized. Create effective feedback structures and cadences for your team so that everyone can easily communicate with one another.