Too often leaders think that they have all the good ideas. I personally believe that the best ideas are those we haven’t even thought to ask for. This past year the company I work for has really been focused on growing the business. I have taken this very seriously and have made my team aware that I am taking it seriously as well. Because of this, not only have we come up with new creative ideas to help to grow our business, but we have been able to really help our team members feel that their ideas are not only valued, but are welcomed.
In Bringing Out the Best in People McGinnis says that collaboration is a huge part of being successful. I couldn’t agree more. When I think back to the times that my team has worked together to come to new goals, it has made me proud of the great ideas that have come from the interaction. Believing that all the good ideas are going to come from the people who are already in leadership positions is not only naive, it will not help your company to move forward.
So how do you get people to get on board? TEAMWORK!
T- think about their needs, what are they struggling with and how can we help them overcome it
E- expect them to bring forward the things they find important and how we can assist them in this area.
A- always be open to feedback, by allowing teams to speak their minds when they aren’t liking something, they will be more willing to come forward with other ideas.
M- manage by leading, not manage everything. By taking a step back and really just leading the team in the right direction you will be able to really make team members find you approachable.
W- wait to respond to ideas when you aren’t sure they will work. When the answer is immediately no, it can be discouraging. Think through if there are ways it can work; ask the team members how they anticipate it coming together, etc.
O- organize times for team members to be able to come together and really brainstorm, those times are often the most effective
R- reiterate how well they are doing with coming up with their own ideas and implementing them. Remember that continuous feed back is one key to success.
K- keep them informed, by going back to their ideas and letting them know that they will or will not be implemented will keep them coming forward with things in the future.
Remember, the best ideas are often those of people who aren’t in leadership positions. Collaboration is very critical to success in companies, and is one way to better lead a team to success and teamwork.