Making a team more efficient is a delicate balance of structure, motivation, and communication.
The five points below are what continue to make our team at Lovethesales.com more effective in our daily tasks and weekly goals. By emulating a combination of the five points below, you will see a great improvement in your team’s mentality towards their work.
1) Weekly Sprints for a more Effective Team
At the beginning of each week, we have a maximum 2-hour planning session where we set goals and discuss what we each can achieve for the week. The goals have to be specific, measurable, and achievable.
We use an online platform called Asana, which tracks and assigns tasks that the whole team can see. This is great for keeping up-to-date with your team’s progress throughout the week and also makes it easier for cross department integration.
This weekly sprint can be done over a one or two-week period, depending on how much work you need to break-up.
2) Don’t Forget Daily Stand-Ups
Now we have a clear direction for the week, it’s good to have a 15 minute daily catch-up with your immediate team.
This doesn’t have to be all of the departments, but a short catch-up where you each talk about what you have done the previous day, what you will be working on today, and anything that’s blocking you from making progress.
This updates your team of any problems or difficulties you might face in completing your task. It’s essential for more fluid communication among each other. Stand-ups should be no longer than 15 minutes, but don’t skip this so you can review if team members are hitting their weekly goals.
3) Sprint Retrospectives
Sprint retrospectives are meetings that are half an hour long, and provide a chance for the team to reflect on planning, and how it went. These are done at the end of the week.
This is a reflection technique for your team at the end of every week or two, in which each member answers three questions.
- What went well?
- What went bad?
- What they need to change moving forward?
This is extremely helpful in plunging out the good and bad behaviours of your team members and committing to changing the bad ones. This is also a great opportunity to review whether you made those changes, or delivered on what you said you were going to do in the weekly sprint.
4) Change Your Environment
Whether it’s our weekly sprints or daily catch ups, we make sure we get out of the office. This might not be feasible for every company, but doing a stand-up outside – standing in a circle and deliver a quick highlight to your team – is surprisingly energising.
It might be an obvious point, but by getting the blood rushing and changing your environment, you are on your way to a more effective team.
5) An Effective Team Rewards Itself
From the early days of Lovethesales.com, a couple of late Friday afternoons, we would have a drink to celebrate the week like most companies do.
This turned into a tradition we now call Whisky Friday’s in which we come together as a team around 5 on a Friday, and have a few glasses of new whisky we get from a fantastic little shop down the road from our offices.
The tradition-and-reward principle works really well to make an effective team as not only does it bode well for team bonding, but gives everyone a sense of accomplishment at the end of the week. We can relax a bit and let off some well-earned steam, knowing we’ve done a great job.
Creating your own version of whisky Friday (doesn’t have to be whisky), will pull your team together, create better communication, and all-around lift morale. You may want to mix it up and do cupcake Tuesdays or ping pong Thursdays – anything they can look forward to. This is a fantastic motivational booster.
An Effective Team is a more productive team
Incorporating a combination of these techniques into your team’s culture will dramatically improve communication, mindset, and the structure that you all work under. By quantifying the changes you make, you can see the progress you will make towards a more effective team.