More on team leadership in business and sport

Yesterday we looked at some of the lessons from successful sporting teams that we can apply to business and work teams, including:

  • Different Types of Competition
  • The Power of Discipline, and
  • The Importance of Teamwork and Trust.
  • Today I will share three more valuable insights you can apply from high performance sporting teams to fostering high performance business and work teams.

    A Common Goal:

    Share your vision with your team members and encourage them to commit to realising it. Look for any challenges that your team members are facing when they try to achieve their best. Ask your team members what you can do to help and empower them to do whatever it is they do best to help you achieve your vision and milestones.

    It is also important to ensure that everyone on your team really wants to be there. It’s very difficult to create a cohesive team if you have a reluctant member undermining the vision everyone else is trying to achieve. When someone has the skills and the commitment, both to the vision you are trying to realise and to the team that is trying to achieve it, you will create a powerful force that guarantees success.

    Individual Needs:

    No quality sporting coach puts every member of a team through exactly the same training regime. So be conscious of the individual needs of all members of your team.

    Find out why individual team members are actually working for you. This will help you identify specific ways to help them develop their skills or make best use of their existing skills and work preferences. You may even find that they would fit better into a different role all part of your organisation.

    Get to know everyone on your team well enough to understand exactly what their personal picture of success looks like to them and what qualities, skills and experiences they bring to the team. This will help you to help them to be more motivated in their contributions to the team and to achieving your company’s vision.


    Finally, make it a habit to ask all your team members for their ideas and opinions. No one, including you, has a monopoly on good ideas. And in fact your team members who are working at the coalface can often understand the situation from a unique perspective, generating useful insights and opportunities for improvement.

    When you ask team members for their ideas you are acknowledging their personal value to the team and offering a special type of recognition that workers appreciate immensely.

    By being open to team members’ suggestions you will not only achieve an improved outcome, you will be building a more motivated and successful team.

    Kerrie Mullins-Gunst specializes in helping leaders and managers develop all the skills they need to mentor manage and lead. Check out this simple yet powerful tool to improve employee performance and boost workplace motivation: