Effective Leadership #33 – Rendering support to the team

It is the duty of an effective leader to maintain the trust with their team members. Trust is something that is very difficult to build. It can even take years to build trust. Some people judge others instantly on the first sight. It can either be in a positive way or in a negative way. If it is a negative judgement, it will take several years for them to change their mind. They might have initially started with a distrustful mindset and would have gradually had it all the time in mind. An effective leader should work hard to gain the trust from their team. The trust can be gained with the help of showing loyalty to the team members and by supporting the team in all the aspects.

Building the trust with the team

Proving the trust is a continuous process. It can take several instances for an effective leader to actually prove that they are trustworthy. Trust is developed with the help of word and deed. A healthy verbal communication with the team member can be the best way to sustain trust. Whatever they do, it is a continuous process and it should happen again and again to prove worthy. Not all the team members will take it in a positive note, it can even be challenging for the leaders to, again and again, prove themselves. Staff members can think that the leaders are communicating with a hidden agenda. It makes the work difficult for the leader to provide continuous assurances and reassurances. Whenever a communication is made with the staff member, a leader should be confident and clear having a mindset that they are trustworthy and believe that they will be trusted.

Honest is an important step in building trust with the team members. If the leaders and managers are honest with the team members, they will be able to easily build the trust with the team members. Even at times if leaders take tough decisions, the staff members will not lose trust. That is the advantage of being honest with the team members. Keeping up the promises is also another important aspect of being honest. The staff members will feel comfortable that the leaders are really concerned and they keep up their promise. There should also be no partiality. An effective leader should always be fair to every member of the team irrespective of them being favourite or not. It will be more effective if the leader constantly shows their trust to the staff members for their effective contributions to the team.

Looking after the team

The primary goal of a leader is to take care of the team. Whatever a team member needs, the leaders should always be a go-to person. Sometimes the staff members of the team may not be very expressive. It is the duty of the leader to have frequent conversations with them to understand their needs. In an ideal working space, there should always be room for new ideas and improvements in the team. The leader should always be a witness for it. If the working conditions are good for the staff members, the productivity of the team will also be very good. A leader should always think in staff member’s perspective. It may be easy to criticise someone but we may not know the difficulty a person is undergoing unless we are on their shoes. If you suspect any problems in the operating procedures in the team or process, be prepared to make changes and exceptions to the general operating procedures to make it comfortable for the staff members of the team.

Any problem in the team is solvable by proper communication. Have a good interaction with the staff member either formally or an informal conversation to understand if there are any possibilities for you to help the team member as an effective leader. Be in frequent touch with the team to understand their problems. If there are any situations where you need to be involved, do the action immediately without any delay. Sometimes people even bring their personal problems to work. They get confused so much and that can even affect the work. If they find it comfortable, they share the problems with the leaders as well. During such situations you can understand their problems and show sympathetic response to make them feel comfortable. If it is possible for you to provide a solution to them, it can be done. This will make them feel free to continue their work effectively.

Building confidence in the team and individuals

The first step to get confidence is to believe the process or the directions provided by the leader. If the staff members of the team achieve something, they will feel more confident and continue to provide their best to the team. Sometimes the staff members even have an inferiority complex where they feel a bit low about themselves. In such cases if a target is set on them and if they work hard and achieve the target, the confidence is automatically built. They feel motivated after the achievement. A leader’s responsibility is to celebrate the achievement of an individual as well as the team. This will really motivate them and make them work even more effectively the next time.If you identify a mistake in someone’s work, you can point out the mistake but undermining the person should not be done. Not everyone will take it easy and they will not find it very comfortable. Recognizing the team members builds more confidence among the members. It should also be a material recognition along with a normal prasing.

Providing Back-up

The staff members should always be supported psychologically. That is how they will be motivated to give their best. Psychological support will not cost anything. If you are someone who expect loyalty from others, then more than getting it is important that you give loyalty to others first. If there are outside team members try to provide maximum support to the team members. Even there are instances where the team members have made some mistake, try to be nice to them in front of the other team members. You can later talk to them in a conditional manner separately. If there is any requirement for disciplinary action to be taken, make sure it is done in a private discussion between the leader and the staff members. It should not be done in front of the other staff members in the team or any third parties.

If you are expecting the team members to perform well, it is also very important to provide them the necessary tools they will need. Without proper equipments the staff members may not be able to reach the desired targets. Resources and material back-up is vital for effective output from the staff members. They can even find resources by themselves but as a leader if you provide a helping hand to them to find the necessary resources, they will find it more comfortable and the trust on a leader will drastically increase. They will be more loyal to the leader. If the staff members are loyal to the leaders, the individuals productivity will increase and it will be easier for the leader to mentor them.

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