What is team management?
Team management is the ability of the manager to coordinate a group of people to perform their tasks and achieve a common goal.
Team management involves activities such as supporting, communicating, motivating, setting goals, and reviewing work to help team members finalize their tasks. or achieve the team objectives.
If you want to be successful at managing the team, you need to have the right skills and apply the right techniques to achieve the expected results.
Team management importance
Successful team management has a wide number of benefits regardless if we work with a small or a large team. Let's recap the key reasons why you should aim for effective team management:
- Systemize how your team members work
- Handle difficult projects more easier
- Improve engagement across the workforce
- Boost employee happiness
- Reduce turnover
- Boost collaboration and communication
- Promote alignment among coworkers
- Outline clear roles and responsibilities.
What is a good team manager?
We all have good managers and bad ones. The differences are extremely clear when we experience them; however, may be more difficult to explain them. You should aim your managers to act as a leader and avoid bossy attitude. The image below presents clearly the differences between these traits and focus on the one that are aligned with your company culture and values.
Some of the competencies best team managers get these 3 aspects right are the following:
- Set responsibilities, delegate work, and motivate peers
- Organize regular 1-on-1 to provide constructive feedback, coach, and remove bottlenecks
- Focus on setting and achieving team goals.
In the following lines, we will expand into the strategies for effective team management in the workplace.
Key team management skills
Find below the top ten skills on how to manage a small team like the best leaders:
- Hire the right people
- Establish the team’s achievable goals and mission
- Maintain open communication
- Nurture positive vibes in your team
- Delegate responsibilities in a balanced manner
- Discuss teamwork and resolve team issues
- Provide constructive feedback and publicly reward the worthy ones
- Do your part and more
- Master conflict management
- Be enthusiastic, and celebrate wins.
Let's go into detail about each one of them, understand why these steps are important, and how to implement them into your own team.
1. Hire the right people
Finding the right team members for your team can be difficult and time-consuming, but it's crucial to your team and project productivity. When hiring persons, you should evaluate the potential candidates' competencies in terms of professional qualifications and skills. The hiring details help match particular potential candidates to the team's specific tasks or positions, ensuring they are competently composed. The team should also be balanced along critical lines such as gender, professional qualifications, age, and skill sets, among other team dynamics and diversity elements. Please get to know them one-on-one to learn more about their talents, skills, and strengths.
And when you have found the right people, don't forget to follow the onboarding process. Ensuring that the new hire has a great start within your business, is a huge factor when considering the employee retention rates.
2. Establish the team's achievable goals and mission
Every team member should know the clear, concise, and articulated goals daily. Otherwise, they will miss deadlines, forget tasks, or feel their work is in vain. If you want your team to work together, then give them something to work for together. Set goals as a team and discuss individual goals with each person to confirm you are all on the same page.
According to a Hypercontext survey, 37% of managers think that keeping the team on track to meet goals is the most crucial aspect of their job.
“Rowing harder doesn't help if the boat is headed in the wrong direction.” — Kenichi Ohmae
There is no doubt that daily goals are important, but your team must also reach and achieve a long-term pursuit. Open up a discussion for your team members to provide insight or suggestions on this matter. Use this feedback to set a team mission for all of you to work toward every day.
3. Maintain open communication
Employees want to be kept in the loop about ongoing projects, goals, and deadlines, so you must communicate well with them and inform them about the organization's goings-on. Maintaining communication channels wide open is vital to the success of any project. Communication is the most critical aspect of teamwork as it defines the capacity and ability of all team members to channel crucial information to one another. Good communication ensures that each team member is allocated tasks that are effectively done and relayed back to the necessary team authorities. Good teamwork communication allows your project to run smoothly and avoid responsibility to overlap or deadlines being missed.
If you're looking to improve internal communications, consider the following ideas:
- Invest in team-building activities
- Use online tools for communication instead of meetings. Examples include: Slack, Microsoft Teams, Google Chat.
- Establish a regular process: ie weekly 1 on 1 meetings
- Encourage dialogue, and sharing of ideas from anyone.
Related: If you're looking for a project or team-meeting agenda we have great examples to share.
4. Nurture positive vibes in your team
Your job as the team manager is to uphold a positive vibe in your office space and promote a positive work environment by providing compliments and recognition when someone excels in their position.
As a manager, you are the soul and spirit of your team daily. Everybody in your team should feel appreciated for all their hard work, and it is your job to ensure they have that sense of accomplishment. Motivate your group with short pep talks or one-on-one encouragement sessions to boost your employees' morale.
When you need some inspiration to boost the spirit within the team, discover a selection of 101+ motivational quotes for your employees.
5. Delegate responsibilities in a balanced manner
It's easy for tasks and responsibilities to fall by the wayside when multiple people work on the same project. Part of why it is vital that you, as a team leader, establish a relationship with your team and get to know them individually so you can assess their strengths. People perform better and are more engaged in roles where they feel they are employing their best skills, so delegating proper functions that suit each will significantly impact the team's productivity. A balanced delegation of tasks, in such a case, ensures that the team members can competently deliver without compromising on deadline and quality.
Danny Meyer is a well-known restauranteur from New York who has made a name for himself with successful ventures such as Shake Shack, Union Square Cafe, and Gramercy Tavern. During an interview on the Tim Ferriss Show, he shared a simple yet powerful 2x2 matrix that can help leaders decide who they should invest their time in. This matrix plots two key factors: willingness and ability, and can be a useful framework for leaders to determine the most valuable use of their time.
Continue reading about the key tips and how to delegate tasks effectively.
6. Discuss teamwork and resolve team issues
Great leaders actively listen, build accountability, ask questions, and discuss teamwork. Accountability is essential to maintaining an effective work environment, which is why you should hold performance reviews whenever possible, at least once per year. During these meetings, you must address each one's contributions to the team.
Teams can disagree on specific issues from time to time, and they don't always work themselves out, so there may be times when you need to step in and help those involved find a solution or reach a compromise.
The key takeaway here is by boost collaboration and communication you improve teamwork.
Remember: If your team is working entirely remotely or hybrid, you need to reassess how your management works, from hiring remotely, scheduling virtual calls, or having a digital method of keeping track of all tasks to see what is blocked and needs additional support. Don't wait for things to happen, be proactive, schedule remote 1-on-1s regularly with your coworkers, and ask what keeps them busy and where they might need support to deliver better work.
Tip: If you're looking for some inspiration for your coworkers we have a list of teamwork quotes.
7. Provide constructive feedback and publicly reward the worthy ones
When a team member does something exceptional, reward them - with a bonus, a small trophy, or even just a vocal recognition in front of the group. Such practices make the intended recipient feel good and show the rest of the team that hard work is rewarded. Sincere praise provides motivation and drive for the entire team. The only caution goes back to rule one: be consistent in your rewards so you won't be seen as playing favorites.
Don't be one of these bosses who only give feedback when you've got something to criticize! Providing your staff with positive feedback will help build their confidence and encourage them to get more involved in the future, so you must acknowledge their achievements and the effort they are putting in. The more people you have actively participating in discussions and attempting to improve the organization, the better.
Don't forget about the teamwork quotes. They can bring some extra joy and inspiration.
8. Do your part and more
Team management isn't about pointing a finger and merely giving others instructions to do all the work. Your staff will look to you for guidance and inspiration, so you should set a good example to gain their respect. When deadlines draw near or the workload is falling behind, be readily available to jump in and help however needed. If you expect them to behave professionally and commit to their work, you must do so yourself. Make sure that you are doing your job, continuing to develop your career, and supporting your team in doing so too. Strive to be your ideal perfect worker.
50% of employees quit their boss, not their Job - Gallup study
Read on: The vital strategies to be a top performer people manager.
9. Master conflict management
Bringing different personalities to work together in a team is challenging, and conflicts may arise from time to time. Turning a blind eye could lead to a negative atmosphere, which could affect staff productivity, and communication among the team may suffer. When an issue arises, you must manage conflict straight away before it builds aiming to find a resolution. To maintain a suitable and friendly working environment free of any tension, one should organize team buildings or virtual activities that help bond team members together as a team.
In his exceptional book The five dysfunctions of a team, bestselling author Patrick Lencioni highlights five main areas where stellar management is required to ensure cohesive teams: trust, conflict, commitment, accountability, and results.
10. Be enthusiastic, celebrate wins
Good managers know that a good mood is contagious to those around them. There will be times when the work is overbearing or challenging. Find ways to maintain a positive attitude within your group. You should be ready and available to reward hard work whenever your team's goals and missions are achieved or surpassed. Schedule a team party or find ways to honor your team individually as a triumph over their goals.
In case you need more examples, we share 30 inspirational employee appreciation ideas, so that the employees feel better recognized.
FAQ team management
What is the the most important skill required for effective team management?
The most important skill required for effective team management is effective communication. As an HR specialist, I understand the significance of clear and open communication in fostering collaboration, resolving conflicts, and achieving team goals.
Effective communication involves actively listening to team members, providing feedback, and ensuring that information is conveyed accurately and comprehensively. It also includes being approachable and creating a safe space for team members to express their ideas, concerns, and feedback.
Why is team management necessary?
There are several reasons we would like to provide when it comes to team management needs within the business:
- Collaboration and synergy: Effective team management allows individuals with diverse skills, knowledge, and perspectives to come together and work towards a common goal. By harnessing each team member's unique strengths, teams can achieve greater results than individuals working alone. Teamwork promotes collaboration, creativity, and innovation.
- Division of labor: Team management entails delegating duties and responsibilities to team members based on their abilities and knowledge. By dividing the workload, team managers can ensure that tasks are completed efficiently and effectively. This allows for specialization and maximizes productivity.
- Problem-solving and decision-making: Teams often face complex challenges that require collective problem-solving and decision-making. Team management facilitates pooling of ideas, expertise, and experiences, leading to more informed and well-rounded decisions. It also encourages brainstorming, critical thinking, and the exploration of different perspectives.
- Support and motivation: Team management involves supporting and guiding team members. A good team manager creates a supportive and motivating environment where individuals feel valued, recognized, and encouraged to perform at their best. This boosts morale, engagement, and job satisfaction.
- Conflict resolution: In any team, conflicts and disagreements are bound to arise. Effective team management involves addressing conflicts promptly and impartially. Team managers can help resolve disputes and maintain a harmonious work environment by facilitating open communication, active listening, and mediation.
- Continuous improvement: Team management includes monitoring team performance, finding areas for improvement, and applying strategies to enhance productivity and efficiency. Team managers can foster a culture of continuous learning and growth by analyzing data, gathering feedback, and providing training and development opportunities.
What are the top team management qualities?
While many qualities contribute to effective team management, here are ten top qualities that HR specialists often look for in successful team managers:
- Leadership: A strong team manager leads by example, sets clear goals, and inspires and motivates team members to achieve their best.
- Communication: Effective communication skills are essential for conveying expectations, providing feedback, and fostering open and transparent dialogue within the team.
- Empathy: A good team manager understands and empathizes with the needs, concerns, and perspectives of team members, creating a supportive and inclusive work environment.
- Collaboration: Encouraging collaboration and teamwork is crucial for leveraging team members' diverse skills and knowledge to achieve shared goals.
- Problem-solving: A skilled team manager is adept at identifying and addressing challenges, facilitating problem-solving discussions, and guiding the team toward practical solutions.
- Decision-making: Making informed and timely decisions is a crucial quality of a team manager. They consider various perspectives, gather relevant information, and review the pros and cons before making decisions that benefit the team and organization.
- Adaptability: Team managers must be flexible and adaptable in the face of changing circumstances, adjusting plans and strategies to ensure the team's success.
- Accountability: Holding oneself and team members accountable for their actions and outcomes is crucial for maintaining high standards and achieving goals.
- Trustworthiness: Building trust within the team is essential. A trustworthy team manager is reliable and honest and maintains confidentiality, fostering a culture of trust and integrity.
- Continuous learning: A good team manager is committed to their professional development and encourages the growth and development of team members through training, coaching, and mentoring.
These qualities, when combined, contribute to effective team management and create a positive and productive work environment.
Team management is an art that requires competent knowledge of how to manage different talents while bringing them together successfully. As a successful team manager, one should understand the team dynamics right from start to finish. In this regard, a well-composed team would be easy to manage by delegating responsibilities following the team members' competencies.
At LeaveBoard, we offer tools to help with vacation scheduling, tracking and management. We offer a online attendance calendar where you can see when your team-members are out of office, and help with planning the upcoming work. And since each employee has an account, and the system has a lot of automation, productivity goes up, and so the job satisfaction.
A well-managed team should achieve its obligations, responsibilities, and goals within a specified duration of time. A team's success depends on how professional, knowledgeable, and compelling a team manager is.