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How to build an effective team before the next financial year

How to build an effective team before the next financial year

As you approach the new financial year, it is the perfect time to review a number of key areas within your business. The actions you take and implement now can help to set up your business for success in the new financial year.

Like most business owners, you might think that setting your strategy for the next year is the most important thing you can do.  However, another important step is regularly missed. In Jim Collins book “Good to Great”, he suggests that it is important to focus on ‘people first’.  To get your company to move from being good to becoming great, you need to look at your people.

Who do you have on the bus in your business? Should they be on the bus or sitting in a different seat? Jim’s analogy follows ‘first who, then what’.  It is important to reflect on your current team and create a plan on how to build an effective team, before the next financial year.

Create a plan and take action

The first step in building an effective team is to create a plan.  Do you have the right team around you, to create the best possible strategy and who are capable and motivated to bring this to life?

It is common for business owners to create a strategy or plan, but then get caught up in the day-to-day routine and fail to take action and implement the plan. This can quickly become evident when a business owner doesn’t have the right people on the bus.

What team members does your business need?

Before you can work out what team members you need in your business, you need to first understand the different functions you need in your business, that enables growth.

Consider the following to uncover what your business really needs:

  • What are the most important daily tasks?
  • What skills and capabilities does the business require?

If you aren’t clear on the answers to these questions, then completing a functionality assessment on your business can help you get a clearer picture of what is required. This assessment will help you see past the current roles and structure you have in place, as this may not be what is required to take you forward.

The next step is to assess your current team’s capabilities.

Assessing your team’s capabilities

Once you’ve decided on the things your business really needs to continue going from strength to strength, you then need to assess your current team’s capabilities.

  • Do they have the skills and capabilities required to get the job done?
  • Are their capabilities being fully utilised in their current role?
  • Do your staff live and breathe your business values?
  • Do they fit the overall culture of your team and business?

To help with answering the above questions, completing a values alignment assessment can give you some great insight.

This can be done through a values alignment assessment.

Through your assessment, you could discover that your current staff:

  • Are in the right roles, or
  • Have the potential to step up, but may need some additional, support or training to increase their capability, or
  • Are right for the business, but aren’t sitting in the right seat, or
  • Aren’t suitable for the business moving forward.

What conversations should you be having with them, to empower them and get their best performance, or to address the concerns that you have?

Although some of these decisions and conversations may be difficult, your people form the foundations for the future success of your business. If you want to create a strong team, it all starts with having capable staff.

Hiring the right person for your business

If you’ve completed your assessment and noticed that you have a gap in skills or capabilities and don’t have the right staff to ‘step up’, then it’s time to look at recruiting.

Hiring the right person for your business is one of the most important parts of building the right team.  Here are 5 tips on hiring the right person for your business:

  • Take your time to find the right person
  • Review their skills and capabilities and ensure that these match the gaps you have identified
  • Consider how they will fit into the culture of the team and if they align with the business values
  • Follow a structured and diligent recruitment process
  • Always perform reference checks to learn their strengths and weaknesses. We highly recommend talking to the current and previous line managers.

When you find the right person and bring them into the business, engage them with a thorough onboarding plan. The aim is to integrate them into your business and team so that they feel supported and are armed with the knowledge required to be successful.

Creating a strong team culture

To ensure the success of your team, and ultimately your business, you need to have an aligned and capable team.  A team who will implement, take action and bring a strategy to life. Having the wrong team or insufficient capability decreases the likelihood of success significantly.

Creating a strong team culture is a result of choosing employees who align with your team and business values, work hard, take action and have the right skill set.

However, it only takes one bad attitude in the office to affect the culture of the business.  Holding onto the wrong people in your business or not addressing issues early, can lead to poor culture and accountability.  It can also impact on your staff turnover and affect the quality people that you want to retain.

An effective team is a successful team

The aim from here until the end of the financial year should be to make sure that you have the “right people, sitting in the right seat”. Only when you have the right team will you and your business be set up for success.

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