Set the Stage for Your Team to Excel with the Right Resources
“Make sure that you always have the right tools for the job. It's no use trying to eat a steak with a teaspoon and a straw.” -Anthony T. Hincks
One of the most important questions to ask yourself as a leader is: Am I making my team eat steak with a teaspoon and straw? In other words, have you given them the tools and resources they need to meet your goals?
It’s certainly possible to eat a steak with a teaspoon and straw, but the process will be slower, less efficient, and more frustrating than if you’d given them a knife and fork.
And while every company, team, and task is unique, there are six foundational resources that can help nearly any team succeed. Keep reading to learn more!
The Six Resources Every Team Needs
As you review this list, take inventory of your unique situation. Which resources are already plentiful on your team? Where do you see gaps? Which resources could benefit your team the most?
While some teams get a dedicated budget (like marketing), others are left to scramble and beg for what they need to thrive. Requests for research, testing, supplies, and vital equipment get stuck in limbo or on request forms. Help solve this problem by advocating for your team. Encourage executives and directors to proactively allocate budgets that teams can access for projects without delays and red tape.
Are you giving your team members enough time to plan, execute, and debrief each project cycle? It’s easy to get caught in the “faster is better” mentality, but this rush to execute can lead to stress, burnout, mistakes, and missed opportunities.
Regularly connect with your team members to determine whether they might benefit from additional project time. And remember, we all need “buffer” time between tasks to slow down and refresh.
Insight is one of the most powerful resources you can give your team members. While it can feel vulnerable to be transparent about failures, setbacks, or complications, leaving employees in the dark often leads to confusion, lack of direction, and mistrust.
Be forthright with information that impacts project timelines, goals, or budget. Be honest with your team members about successes and failures. Stephen Covey’s research in The Speed of Trust reveals that team members who trust their leaders to share knowledge feel included in the decision-making and engage in their work more fully.
- Tools and Training
Do your team members have access to necessary software, data, technology, equipment, training, and skill-development resources?
Take inventory of your resources in this area and ask yourself whether these tools are accessible, up-to-date, and in working order. If not, team members will likely be forced to find time-consuming workarounds, fall into knowledge gaps, or miss opportunities to excel.
All too often, the energy of a project kickoff meeting dwindles when teams dig into the execution phase. Contributors can benefit from administrative support to route information properly, schedule follow-up meetings, create agendas, and note feedback.
Ensure your team has access to administrative support that keeps everyone organized, on track, and informed.
- Team Structure
Does your team have the right people, experience, and skill sets to reach their goals? Or do you need key team members who would help the team work more effectively?
Take a close look at bottlenecks and recurring problems as a starting point to identify where your team might have gaps. Then prioritize rounding out your team with the right skills, knowledge, experience, and authority to succeed.
Take the Next Steps
Where does your team have room to grow when it comes to resources? BookClub can help. We take the best ideas from powerful books and simplify them into bite-sized, micro insights: