No startup or business can be successful or sustainable without a good team. The most valuable asset of any startup are the people/personalities that come together to form the team.
The challenge is to not only assemble the right mix or personalities but to also leverage of the strength of each of the people that make up the team.
First of all, what are the Qualities of a good team?
Trust: Each team member has to have confidence in the others’ ability to get the job done.
Synergy: A team that doesn’t play well together is merely a group of individuals and as such will get little or no work done. Each has to support the other to get the job done.
Respect: A team consists of people with different personalities, backgrounds, beliefs, culture and preference. Each member has to put the other person’s point of view in perspective before making a decision.
Openness: Diversity is the bedrock of creativity! There should be room for everyone to shine without the fear of been put down or suppressed. Each team member must be able to not only share his/her opinion openly and willingly, but they have to be careful not to shove their contributions on others. Fear is cancerous and will stifle growth.
Belonging: This is one area teams fail. Although it is important that people’s privacy are repeated, it is important that each team member knows each other beyond the professional level. This includes hobbies, personal goals, favourite spots etc. This helps to strengthen the team bond. And could prove the deciding factor when things become rocky.
Now that we know what to look out for in a team, we will now focus on the personalities that make this team tick. What should you look out for in each team member? Based on experience and research, I have listed out four personality types that make a team work below.
The Leader: This person is quick to mediate conflict, keep everyone on course and also facilitate communication between the team members. He/She has the ability to motivate others to achieve her vision of the project.
The Team Player: I often call them the Worker Bee. They are enthusiastic about working together to achieve a common goal and are not only eager to help, but are also diplomatic and willing to compromise/sacrifice. They are pivotal to getting the work done.
The Creative: They are always caught up with conceptualizing, imagining and problem solving. Every team needs people like these that can deliver fresh ideas and solutions to make the business stand out. Unfortunatley, they might not be the best communicator and are better paired with a good planner which I will discuss in the next point.
The Planner: They like to streamline, give orders and organise processes thereby creating simplicity and ease of use. They love lists, charts, calenders etc. They often come up with ideas too on how to improve team efficiency and performance.
How then can we have the right mix of personality types? To build a balanced team I believe that all of these four personality types should be represented. I have further simplified what roles they should play.
A coordinator: who is usually the Leader.
An idea generator: The Creative
A Monitor / Evaluator: The Planner
The Implementer: The Team Player.
Building and managing a team may not be the easiest thing to do but investing in this will surely prove profitable in the long run. Lastly, team members still need to be well managed and motivated regardless of the personalities, strengths or roles.
Hi Afropreneurs, Welcome to Episode 2 of The Afropreneur Show. On this episode we tracked down [highlight1]Lemi Ghariokwu[/highlight1] (you can read all about him here) and had a ‘lengthy discussion’ with […]