Teamwork makes the dream work, or so the saying goes, but there’s a lot more to building a team than hiring a few talented individuals. A strong and united team is essential for the growth of your agency, and powerful teams don’t happen by accident.
As an agency owner, you must invest time and effort into building your team - after all, without their skills and expertise your agency wouldn’t be able to operate.
Here’s how to do it.
Value Your Team
First things first: the most important part of building a strong and successful team is valuing them. It’s the key principle that underpins the processes outlined in this article. To build a great team, you first have to value them and, more to the point, show to them that they’re valued.
Underappreciated team members quickly lose motivation and become passive and uninterested. Appreciating your team now lays the foundation for their future success and helps you to put the following steps into place.
You must establish clear lines of communication with your team. Provide them with structure & guidance as a leader so they communicate well with each other and feel respected and valued.
If you want your team to work as one, it’s important to ensure that all members know exactly what’s going on - no one should be left in the dark. Daily touchpoints help bring everyone up to speed, and monthly or quarterly away days will only help office communication.
Working remotely is never an excuse for poor communication, even more so after the last 12 months. There are loads of great communication tools out there, such as Slack, Teams, and Zoom which are fast becoming the backbone of most teams.
Clear Roles and Responsibilities
It’s essential that you clearly outline the roles and responsibilities of each team member so that everyone knows exactly what they should (and shouldn’t) be doing.
This allows your team to operate smoothly without treading on each other’s toes, and at the same time ensures that no tasks slip through the cracks. Your team functions at its best when everyone knows what to do and where they stand.
A powerful team needs a purpose. Setting short, medium, and long-term goals helps to motivate and mobilise your team. Each member should be able to appreciate the importance of their work and understand how they’re contributing towards the bigger picture. On top of this, clear goals provide a framework for decision-making and effective action.
We’re big advocates of sharing strategic business goals and the latest financials with the entire team, providing total transparency. That way everyone knows what needs to be done to hit targets from today’s foothold, not last quarters. It also helps them to feel respected and valued as team members who can impact the direction of the business.
Even the most powerful of teams quickly lose motivation when they feel like they’re being dictated to. Involving the whole team in the decision-making process makes them feel valued, competent and capable.
Your team is much more likely to be passionate about a decision they had a hand in making, so listen to their opinions and consider their ideas. Not only does this help to motivate your team, but it also helps to strengthen the bonds between them.
The phrase “team building” often elicits yawns and eye-rolls, but some out-of-office socialising allows team members to understand each other better and promotes trust and unity. Choosing fun team-building activities can boost morale and help create a better working atmosphere, which is great for the health of your agency.
The above point about joint decision-making is especially pertinent when it comes to team-building outings. Bounce ideas around with your team and find out what they’d like to do - especially if you’re asking them to give up their personal time. Dragging them along to do something unappealing won’t do much for morale!
Building a powerful and successful team is more art than science, and it does take work.
Making a conscious effort to value and communicate with your team goes a long way towards setting them up for success. It’s well worth your time to ensure that everyone is clear on their specific goals and responsibilities and the strategic direction of the business, and encouraging your team to bond outside of work helps your agency to run like a well-oiled machine.
When you’re ready …
Download our eBook ‘The Winning Agency’, describing the perfect agency along with tips and strategies you can install in yours to unlock more profit, grow on a solid financial foundation, and take control of your numbers.
Book a free 121 strategy session to explore how your agency can generate more profit, more cash, and save tax.