Friday March 11 2016

Learn to use various team abilities

By Isiah Kitimbo

A hunter has one objective- to get his prey by all means. This includes applying all available skills to deliver an effective mission.
Similarly, many managers muse about getting the best support from their staff to drive company productivity. Some recommend introducing bonuses with a clear reward system that recognises excellent performance while many others would think training would make the difference.

The two are very good approaches to improving employee performance and driving company productivity. However, they both have cost implications. For instance, a meaningful reward system will require a budget, which must be approved by the company’s top management and so is an effective training programme.

If your company is not financially stable or you want to save your organisation some money, then you need to use inexpensive approaches.

One such approach is to identify the available skills of your team and apply them appropriately. This is similar to a professional golfer that would draw from his or her golfing bag a different club depending on the task at hand.

You will appreciate that each of your team members possesses different skills and learning abilities and thus can perform differently. Some are faster while others are slower. There are those who are good at particular assignments even without or under minimum supervision yet others require continuous policing to deliver quality work.

Therefore, this paradigm can help a manager in deciding who to assign what, where and when plus balancing tasks without necessarily overloading some team members. It also offers an opportunity for team members to learn from each other to develop individual employee abilities to perform even better.

But this approach requires that as a team leader, you develop flexibility traits, recognise the different demands of each situation and adapt appropriately by using a style that will give optimum success.

The writer is a human resources expert and a journalist.