5 Ways to Improve Team Efficiency and See Results 166

5 Ways to Improve Team Efficiency and See Results

This is a guest post by Lexie Lu, a designer and blogger. She contributes to the design world and usually has a cup of coffee close by. She writes on Design Roast and can be followed on Twitter.

The success of any professional team ultimately boils down to the skills and expertise of the individuals it includes. Even the most effective of leaders will find it difficult, if not downright impossible, to lead a team of struggling or subpar employees.

Regardless of the experience of your team members, there are a number of steps you can take to strengthen the team efficiency and experience real, quantifiable results.

1. Setting a Positive Example.

As any great leader knows, it’s vital that you set a positive example for your subordinates. Whether you realize it or not, the sheer nature of the leadership position automatically designates you as a workplace role model. Even those who aren’t a part of your team might begin looking up to you, so it’s important that you lead by setting an example for others.

In order to measure your success, try to solicit specific feedback from your co-workers, peers and team members. As a leader, much of your progress can be measured through the productivity, motivation and attitude of your team.

Here are some tips on how to stay positive at work.

2. Catering to Individual Strengths.

What Stops You on The Way to Perfect Organization

Next, it’s also important to cater to the individual strengths and weaknesses of your squad.

While newly hired recruits aren’t always placed in positions that will fully utilize their skills, proactive team leaders will always do their best to assign and delegate tasks based on the experience and knowledge of their team.

Once again, your ability to do this effectively can be determined by the success of your employees and the level of team efficiency.

Have the assigned tasks been completed in a timely and accurate manner? If not, you may want to re-think your strategy.

Conversely, if you find that your team is constantly meeting or exceeding goals, and if they’re doing so at a heightened pace, you can rest assured you’ve done your job as a leader.

3. Holding an Effective Stand-Up Meeting.

The concept of the stand-up meeting is simple. Instead of taking the traditional approach to group-oriented meetings, where you gather all your team members around a conference table, you simply call a brief huddle.

By keeping your employees on their feet for the duration of the meeting, you’re able to strengthen the bond between teammates, facilitate the quick exchange of information, maximize team efficiency and even bolster their health.

In fact, recent studies have linked prolonged sitting with a 50% higher risk of early death. Moreover, individuals who sit for extended periods of time, or too frequently, are at a 125% greater risk of heart attack, diabetes and more.

Measuring the results of your stand-up meeting can be accomplished by recording meeting minutes and comparing them to the minutes from previous, traditional meetings. You’ll also be able to gauge the effectiveness of your stand-up meetings by analyzing team interaction and monitoring day-to-day productivity.

4. Establishing Clear and Realistic Goals.

You’ll also want to establish clear and viable goals on a consistent basis. Few things will hurt a good team’s motivation quicker than an unattainable or unrealistic goal.

On the other hand, a team that is able to meet and even exceed their goals will almost always strive for bigger and better achievements.

To determine your goal-setting prowess in terms of team efficiency, simply take a look at the actual progress your team has made toward their most recent goal.

If they’re currently on track to meet that goal, or if they already have, you can take that as an indication of your success. Conversely, if you find that your goals are often missed or ignored completely, you’re probably doing something wrong.

5. Making the Most of Technology.

How to Start an Online Business in 6 Steps

Leaders in the 21st century should always take advantage of the latest and greatest in software and information technology.

Mobile devices, including laptops, smartphones, tablets and digital notebooks, can now be used to keep in contact with remote employees who are located on the other side of the globe. Given the sheer accessibility and affordability of technology today, there’s really no excuse to avoid it.

There are a number of ways to measure your success when it comes to the utilization and integration of technology. Your team’s current level of knowledge with general IT is one indicator, but that can be misleading.

For best results, try to compare your company’s current profitability with figures from the past. By digging up such historical data, you’ll be able to see just how important of a role technology has played in the ongoing development and productivity of your business.

Bolstering Your Own Leadership Efficiency.

Unfortunately for today’s business professionals, there are no generic templates to rely on when leading a team of your workplace peers. As each team is bound to be different, and each individual team member will boast their own strengths and weaknesses, it’s crucial that you take the time and get to know your team, understand their abilities and support their productivity in any way possible.

What about your employees? What can you do today to increase team efficiency?




Get The Lifestyle Designer's Digest
Directly into your inbox every Monday.
Previous ArticleNext Article

What the Richest People in the World Have in Common 6

What the Richest People in the World Have in Common

Getting rich is something everyone dreams about.

For those facing financial hardships, getting rich seems the only way out to tide over shortage of money. For the bourgeoisie – the working class – getting rich conjures up visions of stuff they want to buy for luxury or higher social status. Millionaires also wish to get rich: they want to become billionaires and enter Forbes List of the world’s wealthiest people.

Unless you inherit a fortune or get lucky at lottery or sweepstakes, getting rich can be quite tough.

Yet, there are countless rags-to-riches stories around the world. Enterprises such as Amazon, KFC, Facebook or SpaceX have become runaway successes within a short span. The reason: their founders have several things in common, which is rare among other people.

Here we look at various traits that the world’s richest and most successful entrepreneurs have in common.

The Common Traits of The World’s Richest People

The Common Traits of The World's Richest People

1. Serving People.

“If your only goal is to become rich, you will never achieve it,” said John D. Rockefeller, who laid the foundation stone for America’s giant petroleum industry and his own enterprise, Standard Oil. The same adage holds good today.

Facebook, for example, was launched by Mark Zuckerberg and his roommate, Eduardo Saverin to allow Harvard University students to share profiles and pictures

There are countless such examples of ordinary people striking rich. However, they share one thing in common: serving people. The main objective of launching these enterprises was to make life easier or enjoyable for people rather than earning money.

2. Reading Books.

Microsoft founder Bill Gates, celebrity TV show host Oprah Winfrey, SpaceX and Tesla CEO Elon Musk, Berkshire-Hathaway CEO Warren Buffet and several other extremely rich people of the world have one more thing in common: they are avid readers.

Bill Gates reads at least 50 books every year – an average of nearly four and a half books per month.

Elon Musk owes his success at SpaceX, the project to open space tourism to his love for books and the knowledge he gained from them about rocketry. Oprah Winfrey attributes her success to dozens of books, including some 70 top titles she read on her way to success while Warren Buffet spends about 80 percent of his day reading books.

3. Long-Term Financial Strategies.

A report by CNBC states, all wealthy people depend upon long-term financial strategies rather than short-term gains. They utilized their earnings and savings to invest in safe stocks that would assure gains in the long run rather than indulging in risky trading that can offer high returns.

Such financial planning and decisions ensured they do not lose money. Further, they invested money in their enterprises without the hope of immediate returns.

These wealthy people first focused on building a brand, offering value for people to identify with the brand. And later, popularize the brand through word-of-mouth publicity, which is more effective than traditional advertising.

4. Never Say Die.

Yet another common character trait shared by the world’s richest people is, they are not quitters.

Like every other human on Earth, these wealthy folks also witnessed ups and downs in life. Some of these were so overwhelming most ordinary people would have called it quits and gone in search of easier ventures.

Brian Chesky, Joe Gebbia and Nathan Bleckharczyk, founders of Airbnb, the world’s largest hotels and accommodations aggregator were plagued with financial problems.


Heavily encumbered with debts, bankruptcy was staring at these entrepreneurs in the very eye. Yet, they did not budge. They innovated their service that made Airbnb the world leader in its field today.

Another excellent example is Colonel Harland Sanders, whose recipe for fried chicken was rejected as many as 1,009 times before it was accepted. Col. Sanders is the founder of global chain Kentucky Fried Chicken or KFC.

5. Accepting Criticism.

Most people flee from criticism of any sort. Rather than learning from negative comments arising out of their behavior or work, they take umbrage rather quickly. Yet, they do not bother to amend their behavior or work pattern.

All wealthy people, however, are different. They are willing to be criticized for introducing new ideas or thoughts.

Jeff Bezos, founder of Amazon, rightly says that those who will try and do something new must be willing to draw criticism.

Steve Jobs, founder, Apple, Inc. puts it in even stronger words: “If you want to make everyone happy, do not become a leader; sell ice cream instead.”

The success of Amazon and Apple proves their founders were right when it came to accepting criticism.

6. Out of The Box Thinking.

how regular life looks like and why it won't make you happy

Thinking outside of the ‘box’ or a typical mindset is often impossible for most people. Understandably, because everyone draws their mindset from factors and circumstances they are raised and educated in.

This mindset eventually becomes a formidable fetter for anyone wanting to become an entrepreneur. Generally, most people follow the flock and take professions they falsely believe as best suited for their skills. Others try to follow footsteps of their parents.

The wealthiest people in the world never followed flock or took lucrative professions of their parents.

Mark Zuckerberg’s father was a dentist and mom – a psychiatrist. Bill Gates’ dad was a banker father while his mother was a lawyer.

Despite coming from wealthy families, they chose to follow their passion rather than confine their thinking to the proverbial boxed mindset. Col. Sanders had lost his parents at a young age of six years and had to shoulder responsibilities of his siblings.

Other Examples of What The Wealthiest People Have in Common

As we can see, these qualities or personality traits are common to the world’s richest people. It sets them apart from others. Most of them launched small enterprises with the sole purpose of bettering the lives of people. Their products or services gained popularity because money was never their consideration. Widespread use of their technology, products, and services eventually led them to become wealthy.

These traits are not typical to the US or the western world, as one may mistakenly come to believe. A glance at some richest people in India and elsewhere also reveals, they share the same characteristics with their American counterparts. This amply proves that richest people around the world share something in common, regardless of where they live and flourish.

Another common trait that all rich people share in common is philanthropy.

Since childhood, they believe in giving back to the society and helping the underprivileged. They practiced charity when they were not so rich and continue to donate money for the betterment of the society even after becoming billionaires.

These richest people on the planet never waited to become wealthy. Instead, they were philanthropists since childhood – a trait most other people pathetically lack or try to foist upon themselves to gain popularity.

In Conclusion

It is not easy to become wealthy. Or everyone would become a millionaire. People who do make it to the top have a different way of thinking combined with an undying zest for learning new things and educating themselves.

They do not consider conventional learning at universities as the end of their education. Instead, they try and acquire new skills every day and find ways and means to become better humans rather than focusing on fattening their purses.

The world’s wealthiest people also share one common trait: they are not people pleasers, despite their generosity and willingness to serve the society. Because they know, trying to please everyone will get them nowhere and could mean possible failure.