Whatever type of team you’re leading, whether it’s a children’s football team, a sales team or a board of directors, bringing together a diverse group of individuals with varying skill sets and backgrounds as a cohesive team is a difficult task, but some of the underlying methodology remains the same, whatever the type of team.
The British & Irish Lions have successfully been doing just this since the late 1800s – bringing together players who are often pitted against one another on a week by week basis, but who have to pull together as a team when they play other countries as the Lions.
According to the BBC, business leaders can also learn from football managers.
So, what are the key points your business can take from the Lions’ strategy, to create your own strong, high performing team?
Have a shared goal
It’s important to ensure that each member of the team understands what their own role is and what the key deliverables are, but how that fits into the wider business vision and strategy. This helps them to see the contribution they’re making to the organisation.
This overarching strategy is often delivered at team building corporate events, to ensure that the entire workforce gets the same message and has a sense of purpose when they leave the day.
It’s also important that performance against goals is measured at key milestones to ensure that overall targets can be met. This is often easier to do in sports, as there is a result at the end of each match.
A diverse team can bring together a fantastic range of skills and experiences, that are all useful in developing the strength and performance of the team. However, this only works when each member gets the chance to voice their opinion and this can be difficult if some of your team are more dominant than others. A good team leader needs to ensure that all members of the team get the chance to be heard and to share their skills and experience.
Leading a strong team isn’t always about the component parts, but about the value of the group as a whole.