Successful teams generally have a successful leader–either out front or behind the scenes–guiding the way. If you lead a team, here’s a quick assessment to reflect on how you are doing:
- Strengths – What strengths do you have in leading the team? How are these strengths reflected in the team’s culture or work?
- Outcomes – What are the most important outcomes the team has accomplished in the last six months? How did you know those were the most important? How did the team know? How do you communicate goals and goal achievement?
- Relationships – How would you describe your relationships with the team and its members? Where might you want to invest more time? Who needs more and less attention?
- Process – Are team processes working? What is operating efficiently? What is not? What improvements are needed based on this?
- Problems – Is the team working on different problems than they were six months ago? What problems continue to reoccur or repeat themselves? What do you want to do based on that?
- Conflict – Where is there conflict on the team? What is the next conflict likely to be? Are conflicts generally task or relationship based? How do you engage in conflict when it occurs? Is that approach generally successful? What needs to be tweaked?
- External Connections – Who does the team depend on outside the team? How are those connections maintained and supported? Is that working?
- Succession Planning – What would happen if you left tomorrow? Is the team ready to work without you? Who would emerge as the natural leaders? What do you want to teach them before you move on?
- Feedback – When and how did you last ask the team for feedback about what they most need from you? If you don’t know, think of creative ways to ask.
Pausing to reflect on your team leadership strengths and gaps can highlight possible action plans for the future. This assessment is a quick way to scan the team environment for better outcomes down the road.