As you become more established in running your own organization and generating more business, it will be necessary to delegate functions and tasks to other employees. The main purpose of bringing on team members is to lighten your own workload, but if you fail to select capable people or do not clearly lay out your expectations, you may find yourself spending more time micromanaging and less time focused on building your business.
Douglas R. Conant, the recently retired CEO and president of Campbell Soup Company, recently shared some wise words about team building in a piece for the Harvard Business Review blog. He said “building effective teams isn’t rocket science, but it’s just as hard.”
Just as you would not try to build a rocket without a plan, only to check the schematics after the launch was a failure, you would not simply hire someone when you need the extra help and then try to figure out later why they are not meeting all of your expectations. Both efforts demand strategic planning, allocation of resources, calculations of how one system (or person) will work with another and constant reassessment of what is or is not working and why.
Before creating any new positions and hiring team members, you must understand a few basic principles of managing, empowering and engendering trust. Front loading the work of designing clear job positions and selecting talented people will save you hours later on. You will need to seek out top talent that is capable of fulfilling your expectations and tackling the functions you create in your organization. As hires work, equip them with the tools to do their jobs and a clear roadmap of what you want them to accomplish. By assigning employees functions instead of tasks, requiring them to constantly report back to you will be less of a necessity, freeing up your days to manage the business instead of individuals.
Do you have any tips for establishing trust within an organization? What kinds of team-building exercises do you use to engage employees? Have you created a hierarchy that gives everyone in the company guidance on the roles they fill and how these relate to those of their colleagues?