Many first time and emerging leaders think about how to develop a winning team. How do I help the team reach success? How do I develop a team that others want to join?
There are three basic areas to focus on, when combined, will determine the success to develop a winning team: hiring, firing, and inspiring.
Sports team know these so well, and is second nature for successful coaches. In sports, we know what to look for in a certain position (size, strength, speed, etc) or the kind of player for individual sports like golf and tennis.
Sports coaches look at the skills, knowledge, work ethic, and most importantly the attitude to develop a winning team. In other words, the 4-Hs of the player — the hands, head, habits, and heart.
Yet many work organizations don’t spend time to clarify what they’re looking for and more importantly who’s the right person for the winning team and do they fit the culture.
So many work organizations hire quickly for skills and then fire for attitude. What might that do to develop a winning team, if we turn that around?
There’s much to discuss about winning teams, so please stay tuned for this three part series. Let’s get started with who’s joining our winning team.
Hiring the Right Person
The most important component to develop a winning team is the quality of the team and the staff. In sports, coaches know it takes more than inspiration to win; they must have talent. After all, staffs that just happen get happenstance results.
Think about this statistic: Of all the people who get hired in the next 18 months, 46% will fail.
They’ll receive a poor performance review, get written up or be fired, according to Mark Murphy, the author of Hiring for Attitude. Even more surprising, 89 percent of those who fail will stumble as a result of attitudinal factors such as a lack of coachability, emotional intelligence, motivation, and temperament.
Staff and staff-related issues (the people stuff) is a common point of discussion in every training session or meeting I’ve attended from sports teams to Apple retail stores.
Also, you may be reading this as a small organization and feel this is not relevant. Please don’t make the mistake of thinking you can get by with inferior team members because you’re a small group. The opposite is true. In a organization of 100 employees, and one is inferior, the loss is only 1%. But if you are a team of 2, and one is inferior, the loss is 50%.
I recently heard someone say, hiring the wrong person is an extremely costly mistake. If an employee is fired within the first 6 months, it costs the organization at least 2 years salary.
What Disrupts Hiring?
3 things blow the whistle on the hiring of outstanding teams:
- Get references from previous employers, coaches, and teams. Honest references are almost always sabotaged by tolerance, because no one wants to bow the whistle on the worker or teammate. Also, it is your responsibility to be as objective as you can when giving a reference. To do otherwise would be deceitful. An employer does an employee no favors by recommending her for a job for which she is not suited.
- Another stumbling block to hiring top-quality people is the fact you’re probably a small organization and smaller organizations have less to offer than larger ones. Don’t let the size of your organization determine the quality of your team. Go for the winner and offer him or her your vision for the future. Don’t offer your present situation unless you plan to camp there permanently. Hire a person who can grasp your dream. If they understand you have the ability to make your dream a reality, they may be willing to leave a comfortable situation to move into an exciting one.
- The third hinderance in hiring outstanding teams is not knowing what qualities to look for in prospective team members. You may know what job needs to be done, but are not sure of the qualities a person needs, to do the job well. So key to understand the talents needed for a role, then match the talents and strengths of the prospective member.
Formula to Develop a Winning Team
Here’s a formula that will help you RATE an individual during your interviews and evaluations.
Relationships + Attitude X Talent + Expectation = Performance
See you next week with part two, as we dive into the details of RATE.
Let’s Get Better!
- How are you doing with your hiring and selecting process?
- Do you have a formal list of talents and strengths for the role and culture?
- Does your hiring team understand what to look for?
For more in depth study, please dive into the book from Dr John C Maxwell, Be a People Person, Effective Leadership Through Effective Relationships.