How to Empower Your Team for Success￼
The startup world is known for being fast-paced, collaborative, and team-oriented. The environment is incredibly thrilling and draws people in because it feels like you’re on the cutting edge of innovation and creativity. You have to be scrappy and resourceful, which can lead to some pretty incredible things happening.
One of the most important elements at a startup is the ability to execute quickly to achieve aggressive goals. The backbone of being able to accomplish this is the team. A strong team is what turns a startup into a successful company. You have a group of people with different skill sets, knowledge, and experience from a variety of different industries. Especially in a burgeoning industry, getting everyone on the same page and working together efficiently is paramount to working nimbly and performing at the highest level.
For leaders, your team needs to feel motivated, inspired, and supported to do their job to the best of their ability. Here are a few key steps leaders can take to:
Define clear goals regularly
Not only looking at what are the goals for the team itself but every single person on the team. What are the goals for the team and each individual for the next 3 months, 6 months, 9 months, and 12 months?
Then, take an in-depth look at what needs to happen so those goals can be achieved.
Ensuring the team has the tools necessary to execute
There might be roadblocks in the way for members of your team to achieve the established goals. In order to remove those roadblocks as quickly as possible, prioritize providing the team with the tools they need to execute.
Establishing open communication enables members of the team to state their needs to meet goals. Many leaders have defaulted to just doing something themselves which does not provide long-term leverage in the business.
Empowering Your Team
When someone comes to you with a problem, help them formulate those into solutions so they rely less on you. If you can empower your team to fight through hurdles and succeed, it decreases one layer of decision-making.
Not every decision will be correct every single time, especially when you are moving fast and building in a new industry. It’s not about being right every single time, but closer to 75-80%. If a mistake is made, the team needs to be able to learn from those mistakes and then pivot to iterate to success.
Each individual on a team should be able to manage their portion of the business daily or scalability becomes a greater challenge.
Holding Your Team Accountable
At the end of each goal period, sitting down with the team and going through the successes and failures is a great way to reflect on what worked, figure out where improvement is needed, and reset for the next period.
If there are failures, take an in-depth look at the root cause. Were the goals set not clear? Are there roadblocks in the way? Were more or different tools needed to succeed? Were the individuals not empowered to make decisions to execute?
It’s not just about goal setting but holding people accountable as it decreases complacency and increases efficiency.
Holding Yourself as a Leader Accountable
As a leader, getting your team to a place where they are empowered comes from creating an environment where people feel comfortable taking risks and stepping outside their comfort zones. This means that you as a leader need to be open to new ideas and ways of doing things. Encourage your team to share their thoughts and suggestions openly, and then listen carefully to what they have to say.
Implementing change can be difficult, but it’s essential for growth. If you want your team to be truly empowered, you need to be willing to make changes yourself. Be an example for your team by being open-minded and receptive to new ideas.
It’s important to build a team that will stick with you through the ups and downs. When you empower your team, you create an environment of trust and respect. This type of atmosphere is essential for long-term success, especially when the focus is building an industry shaping company.