High Performance Teams (HPTs) is a concept that refers to teams or groups of people that achieve superior business results through intense focus on their goals. High-performance teams outperform all other similar teams. High Performance Teams exceed the expectations of observers and their productivity is usually positively disproportionate to the team’s size and resources they have. Today, we will discuss High Performance Teams so that you can be inspired to transform turn your team into another High Performance Team. Let us focus on 10 of the key characteristics of HPTs.
- Participative leadership: HPTs use a style of leadership that resembles the democratic approach – involving and engaging all members of the team. This way, every member becomes a very active part of the HPT. This also means that decisions made by the team get easily accepted and adopted by every member of the team.
- Effective decision-making: It is important for a team to have the courage to make a decision when needed. It is equally important to be flexible on the choice of decision making method that you use depending on the nature of the decision question. In some instances, you may need to use intuition, other times the rational method may be the best method, depending on the issue at hand. HPTs master this art of decision making and are flexible and dynamic with decision making methodologies.
- Open and clear communication: Many teams fail on a very basic but necessary ingredient for making a team successful – communication. HPTs develop very clear, open and vibrant communication practices. This way, there are no gaps in understanding of matters within the teams.
- Valued diversity: HPTs value differences in experience, background and other characteristics of the team members. This way, HPTs harness the power of team diversity to generate optimal solutions and best decisions.
- Mutual trust: Members of a High Performance Team (HPT) trust each other. That trust makes every member responsible and accountable as they feel obliged to pay back for the trust they enjoy. All members also trust the whole team as a unit. This creates team confidence and a winning attitude.
- Managing conflict: If it were not for the occurrence of conflicts, many of the failing team would actually be perfect teams. HPTs have mastered the art of preventing conflicts. Even when conflicts do occur, HPTs manage the conflicts transparently. They resolve the conflicts well in time before the conflicts damage team morale.
- Clear goals: Most teams lack vision or common goals. HPTs are different. They have very clear goals which are known to all team members. These goals comply with the SMART criteria. And the team goals are broken down to actionable meanings for each team member.
- Defined roles and responsibilities: HPTs clearly define the roles and responsibilities of each member of the team. Everyone on the team knows clearly what they must do as well as what they must NOT do. There is no ambiguity at all.
- Coordinative relationship: Coordination of tasks between team members is instrumental for driving efficiency and effectiveness of a team. HPTs ensure that at all times, there is seamless coordination of tasks within the team as well as between the team and other teams or departments that the team engages with.
- Positive atmosphere: If you interact with a High Performance Team, you will quickly recognise that they are a High Performance Team. The environment or atmosphere around the team shows it all: positive, futuristic, open and very transparent. In such an atmosphere, it is easy for every team member to deliver to the best of their ability.
Now that we know 10 of the key characteristics of the High Performance Teams (HPTs), it should be easy to work on a programme to transform our teams into HPTs.