For anyone new into a leadership role or for anyone who has taken over the leadership role of a new team taking the time out to build up a pen picture of each team member is a good first step.
One suggested approach is to create a grid with team members name down the vertical access in the first column and then create a number of other columns across the page where you can note useful information that can help you flex your leadership style in order to get the most out if the individual. Effective leaders have the ability to adjust their approach and leadership style regularly to adapt it to differing situations and the unique differences of team members. Firstly however you need to understand these unique differences and this grid exercise is a way of doing this?
The sort of information that could be useful for the new leader to collect in a systematic way would be
- Personality preferences eg Myers Briggs extrovert/introvert sensing/intuitive/ feeling/thinking judging/ perceiving .
- Motivational and de-motivational indicators for each person
- Development level eg their current way of working from dependent to interdependent
- Have they got a clearly defined and understood job description
- Key objectives
- Key areas of development
- Any other useful misc notes
If this grid is compiled and used as a management tool it is useful as a “My Team on a Page ” part of your leadership tool kit . It can be a useful refresher prior to 1-1 discussions.
Another useful activity to schedule with each team member in the initial few weeks is to allow them un- interrupted time to talk about their personal goals long and short term, for them to share how they prefer to receive feedback and also how happy they are with their current personal development plan. Are they in need of more challenge or more support in their current role. How can you as the new leader be helpful for them.
By taking a genuine interest in what makes each person tick and also how things are currently working out through their eyes it will let them know that you care about them all individually.
Armed with all the above information it will not only allow you to adjust your leadership style accordingly it will also help you understand which developmental opportunities are best suited to which individual in your team. As an effective leader the development and growth of your team should be a key objective.
Sandra works with both businesses and private clients as a coach and trainer. She is also author of the book Own It – regain control and live life on your terms. More information can be found at http://www.sandrawebbercoaching.com or http://www.own-it-book.com