4 Ways Leaders Can Build Winning Teams

Building a “winning” team is never easy; in fact, consultants get paid millions each year trying to help corporate leaders do just that.

However, here’s an ugly truth about consultants and team building – much of what they preach is made up. 

All consultants want is for you to continue paying their fees.

Does that sound like a great deal? Probably not, but this doesn’t mean that you should give up on your quest to build a winning team. 

Just step back to your expectations as it is not something that can be done overnight.

Here are four ways you can build a winning team in your organization.

No need for a seven-figure consulting bill, just some tried, and tested, advice that can help to improve morale and performance.

1) Be Humble

Building a great team is not about having a cult of personality.

That is just the opposite of what you need to do.

Instead, be humble and recognize that you are not the only leader within your organization.

You might be the owner, there are times when other people might be in charge.

This is ok if the work they are doing helps to support the overall goal of the organization and its commitment to its customers, suppliers, and people.

All to often this gets lost as turf wars start to spring up.

As such, you need to empower people to take control and then recognize their efforts along the way.

Keep in mind that this approach is not without pitfalls.

But if you want to build a great team, then you need to be humble and believe in your people.

2) Develop Your Team

When you are building a team, you have two choices – build from the inside or bring on high-priced superstars.

The latter is expensive and can lead to conflict.

Yes, there are times when you need to upgrade your team but sometimes a role player can be even more valuable than a superstar.

Just look at the New England Patriots, while you might not like them, there is no denying that they have built a winning team even though they don’t always have the “best” players. 

How do they accomplish this? They bring on the talent that is right for them and then develop a team that can win.

This is more than just catchy slogans it is by building a learning culture – one which helps each team member to reach their potential.

Along the way that might mean you will need to make upgrades but, always with the vision of developing your team.

3) Embrace the Journey

As the saying goes, Rome wasn’t built in a day. The same goes for when you are building a winning team.

Sure, you might want to use your global travel management provider to set up a retreat in a tropical paradise.

But the reality is that building a great team can only happen where the work is done.

While this could be an island in the sun, the odds are that it is in your offices or on the floor of your factory.

As such, you need to learn to love the process of building a team and this starts with understanding that it is a journey.

Embracing this simple fact will give you the perspective needed to build a culture that focuses on doing things rights, celebrating successes, and learning from mistakes.

4) Accountability is Key

A team can win if it isn’t accountable for its actions.

While this can be the hardest part of building a winning team, it is critical.

Yes, the word “accountability” has been talked about so much that it has started to lose its meaning.

Having a deep sense of obligation – to customers and each other – within an organization can do wonders for how it functions.

Simply put, accountability is not optional.

Instead, it is a key part of everything you do.

Though you don’t want to take accountability too far. For example, no daily beatings.

Just focus on the goal and then figuring out why it wasn’t met and what can be done better in the future.

The same goes when things go right as well.

You see accountability isn’t just about punishing people, it is about learning from what works and what doesn’t, sharing that knowledge with your team, and then pulling everyone together to make the company better each day.

You can build a great team and you don’t need a high-priced consultant to help you.

Instead, use these four tips to help make it happen.