Every time someone new joins my team, I always have some golden rules to share with them:
1) You worry about the job, let me worry about you
2) When you bring ideas to me, make sure they are well thought through and finished
3) Have fun
By telling them to worry about the job while I worry about them – they know I have their backs, and they can take risks and focus on the job.
When you take ideas to your boss, he or she may shut it down if they feel the idea is not well thought through and finished. This is because when you take ideas to managers first, they look at it as though it is the final version and most likely shut it down if it has holes in it. Your peers and team members are there for this reason. Use them. They will instead help you enhance it and collectively, you can have a finished and an even better idea. There is a risk that someone may steal your idea so the best approach would be to go to your manager to share the idea as a point you are working on (not as finished work) with your colleagues and you will come back to him when it is finished. This way if anyone tries to play smart, they will only be hurting their own cause.
It is okay to be serious but in trying to work hard, learn to have fun, and destress yourself. Nothing brightens a team more than a little comic relief or power break. Sometimes, pressures get so high that a power break to have lunch with colleagues would go a long way.
As a leader, I also learn to be deliberate about maintaining a healthy work environment. Ask a staff to close early sometimes or take the team out for a break if you feel they’re getting burnt out or just get a meeting-free day going.
Everyone in the team has to contribute to creating a great work environment. If you leave it to the leader alone, he may miss many details. If you leave it to the team, they may feel left behind and overworked.
What are some tips for team success you can share? I’d love to read them!