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Whether you are just starting your business or a new project, you need an effective team next to you. Successful teams are built to last, and here are six actionable steps to create yours:

  • Take culture fit very seriously 

The number one thing all great leaders think about during a job interview is whether or not a candidate fits the company’s culture. 

It may sound surprising, we get that. You would think that hiring based on skills and knowledge is the best way to hire the best employees. However, what only great leaders know is the fact that hiring based on shared values and cultural beliefs is what brings the best results. 

Most managers consider that a culture fit is something “nice to have” but not a necessity. Well, that’s a misconception because an employee that doesn’t fit the company’s culture can only hurt the team’s productivity more. Plus, it is doubtful for an employee who doesn’t fit to have an excellent performance. 

Additionally, culture fit is no longer something that HR professionals are looking for. Candidates also consider before saying “yes” to a job offer. In fact, data from a survey from Glassdoor suggests that almost 77% of the participants claim to consider the company’s culture before applying for a position there. Also, 56% of them consider the company’s culture more critical than the offered salary when asked about their job satisfaction.

So, hiring based on culture fit is the winning ticket to both building an effective and productive team and keeping your employees happy.  

  • Hire top talent 

A candidate must fit the company’s culture to make a great team member, that’s clear now. Yet, having shared values and cultural beliefs is not enough to make a great employee. That’s where looking for the best skills in candidates comes into the scene. If you want to build a team that is effective and productive, you must hire the best professional out there. 

But how do you attract top talent to your company in such a highly-competitive market? There are several strategies companies must use to attract and retain highly-skilled professionals. And, surprising as it may be, a high salary is no longer that relevant anymore. Top talent candidates look for entirely different things now when thinking about accepting a job offer. They consider the company’s culture, the company’s reputation and popularity, and, obviously, the perks and benefits used by the employer. 

So, if you still think that offering a high salary should bring the best team members to you, you should think again. For example, data suggests that companies that have excellent employer brands receive 50% more qualified applicants. Why? Because the best professionals out there want to work for an employer who is popular for offering the best employee perks and benefits. 

  • Look for interpersonal skills in candidates  

So, you’ve found what you think is the “best employee” because they fit your company’s culture and they are highly-skilled and experienced at doing their job. But can the employee be as effective and productive when working in a team as well? 

Now, there’s one more secret that only the best leaders know: the interpersonal skills of the employees make the team work efficiently. 

Have you ever wondered why some teams work effectively and others are dysfunctional? If yes, let us tell you the answer: effective teams have figured out the importance of interpersonal communication dynamics and relationships. Data shows that the demand for social and emotional skills is expected to grow by 26% in the United States and by 22% in Europe by 2030. 

Today, soft skills such as communication skills, empathy, open-mindedness, and teamwork skills are a must in candidates if they are going to be a part of a team. Soft skills in candidates are also necessary because they help the employees adapt to changing roles in flexible organizational structures. And, changing roles often exist in teams, meaning that it’s important to find team members that can adapt quickly. 

  • Encourage open communication

How can your team function properly if the team members can’t communicate openly? It can’t!! Open communication is key to any effective collaboration. And, if your team members are not capable of expressing their thoughts and ideas on a particular task or project they work together at, the chances are that the results will be chaotic. 

Yet, open communication is something that your team can achieve only if you foster a work environment where no one is judged, or punished in any manner, for having a different opinion. In fact, as a leader of your team, you should encourage your employees to speak up when they think that another strategy would help your project or business more.

 Apart from encouraging brainstorming through open communication to find the best solutions, this can also help your employees establish more powerful relationships. And, the closer the connections between your team members, the better the chances for them to work effectively together. 

  • Engage in team building activities 

No, team building activities aren’t just a fancy trend made up by bored employees. And, despite the misconception, they are far from being lame or awkward for teams. They really are effective in helping team members understand each other better and build friendships. 

Team building activities can do wonders to help your employees bond, build trust, and mitigate conflicts. As a result, the overall productivity, motivation, and collaboration of the team increase. 

The good news is that you don’t have to reinvent the wheel to get your team to do some activities together. Team building activity ideas are all over the Internet and are just one Google search away. Or, if you want to engage your team even more, you could ask them to come up with ideas for activities. Using a list randomizer, you can distribute your employees in team one and team two and ask each of them to prepare some team building activities. 

  • Be a good leader 

Last but not least, a team can only be effective and productive if the one who leads it inspires trust and respect and stimulates production within the workplace. Be an example of integrity to your team, be a clear communicator, and be respectful to your employees. This way, your team will trust your organizational skills and never question your leading position.

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