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Solving the Mystery of Choosing the Right Team Members


by At the Coach's Table

· Leadership


Many leaders have trouble identifying the best people for their team. They have a good understanding of what skills are needed but choosing who has the right characteristics to fill the roles can be confusing. Also, knowing the right "mix" of team members can leave leaders perplexed.

Leaders can diminish the confusion and doubt by asking three critical questions:

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1. "Do I have the right mix of 'idea' people and 'detail' people?"

You need both 'idea' and 'detail' people on your team. It would be beneficial to have people who create and innovate and others that are focused on the specifics of the work. This balance will create a team that is thinking from a 'panoramic' and 'in the middle of it all" perspectives.

Another good mix to consider are team members who approach the work analytically. They are focused on the processes and systems. Other team members can be focused on the relationships that support the work (e.g., they build and maintain relationships with your customers and clients).

This right mix of people should balance each other, bring different approaches and perspectives to the work, and support each other with their strengths.

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2. "What do I need more of to really be effective?"

Target individuals that can bring certain aspects to the work that will drive success. Perhaps, that is a great ability to prioritize, a good sense of urgency, or excellent communication skills. The goal here is to know your own areas of weakness. It is a honest assessment of what is not working at its best and to consider what is needed to fill the gaps. This evaluation will enable leaders to consider team members from a different perspective. The goal is find team members that are not just excellent at their roles but who will elevate your unique needs.

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3. "Do I need someone with a different point of view to balance mine?"

Look for diversity of thought, perspective, experience, and culture so that you have a team that can provide a greater variety of solutions. Considering people that are similar to you or to other team members can leave you with a team that misses new ideas, works from the same perspectives and strengths, and lacks a great deal of energy and innovation. Diverse teams can work well together and can make the work fresh, interesting, and energizing.

“Team synergy has an extraordinary impact on business results.”

- Patrick Lencioni, Author