Many teams are actually just a group of people who happen to be working under the same roof. They may have similar jobs, work for the same company and aim for similar
results, but are they all pulling in the same direction, meeting the same objectives and aiding each other to create a great working environment?
How can the team measure how effective they are and how can you ensure they are all singing from the same song-sheet, as it were?
You could carry out a team assessment. Or, better still, let them carry out a self-assessment themselves.
Here’s how you can set one up:
1) Plan some time and inform every team member what is going to happen. You could provide lunch or snacks, so they see you feel this is important.
2) Get them to think about two key questions: What’s going well that we should keep and continue with? In what ways does the team need to improve?
3) Then get them to assess the team against 10 criteria:
You can choose others if you feel them appropriate for the team environment.
Allow team members to assess how they feel against each of the criteria. You can devise a scoring system that will help you compare each person’s thoughts (something like 0-10 will suffice)
After marks have been collated, appoint a facilitator whose job is to discuss the results and reach a consensus on action plans
Record the team’s ideas on a flip, so everyone can see them.
Review and prioritise this list before the end of the meeting
Arrange to have the list distributed to all team members.
Decide what follow-up actions are necessary.
Conduct an informal assessment of the meeting.
Decide on future plans for action based on the results of the feedback.
By carrying out an exercise like this, you get every team member to assess how they feel against key criteria. Then, make sure you listen to what is said at this self-assessment and see if you can devise some ‘quick-wins’ so the team can see the exercise was worth getting involved with.
Conducting a self-assessment is something you can carry out annually to check on progress. The team will respond well if they see results coming from it, and you will have achieved a high level of support so that the group of people you are managing maintains its ‘team’ ethos.
Head of Training
Originally published: 24 February, 2012