Which trophy do you want? The 2004 USA Men's basketball team was made up of the best players in the NBA, all of them millionaires and inarguably extremely talented stars in a league that draws the top talent from all over the world.
...they finished third, and lost to Lithuania, among other previously unknown hoops powers.
Developing a group of A players into a team is a discipline in and of itself, which is why great organizations follow this rule:
Develop Teams, Not Just Individuals
We've all been to training, learned some amazing things and approaches to our particular industry, and then we return to the office, and we can only apply 60% because we need others - our boss, IT, peers - to help with the rest, and to be onboard.
Top companies like GE take whole teams and put them through training together, making real progress and decisions about the business.
The result: No excuse for not following through.
This isn't a solution on its own though, picking the right team members is crucial. You first have to develop a process that will increase your likelihood of selecting the right people to fill the seats on your bus. This takes a structured, well thought out, recruiting and hiring process, which should include evaluations, well trained hiring managers, and well planned positions.
If you don't currently have these pieces in place, it doesn't mean you can't develop a great team, but it will certainly require more time, treasure, and a fair amount if heartburn.
Likewise, a well planned hiring and development process isn't a silver bullet, and it doesn't guarantee success. It does, however, provide you with a structured method that will significantly increase the likelihood of success.
There are plenty of diet plans out there, and the best advice I've ever heard was, "Just pick one, and stick with it." Team and Leadership Development training is the same way, so pick one and stick with it for a while, and use it for everyone. Build the team development training into the annual calendar, and measure the results over time.
Secondly, if you don't have a good HR function in house, explore some outsourcing options. A good HR partner will help you develop your team, your hiring process, and should ultimately help increase overall profitability.
If you would like assistance in ensuring your organization is effectively addressing team development and planning, contact Windsor HR Services at 800-297-4962 or at www.windsorhr.com
Kevin Steckley has been a small business advisor with Windsor HR Services since 2005, and he has worked with hundreds of companies serving thousands of employees across 40 states in a wide range of industries. He has a PHR Certification from the HR Certification Institute, as well as the SHRM-CP designation through the Society for Human Resources Management. He is a 2014 Business Journal 40 Under 40 Honoree, has served as a SHRM Chapter Board Member for 5 years and has helped raise over $443,000 through his involvement with several charities and community organizations over the past 7 years.