Information or Action: Which Build a Better Team?

Posted by Chuck Kocher
On February 4, 2013

Having a great team is critical to building a great business. But great teams don’t “just happen”—you have to create them. Of course selecting the right people for your team is important, but just having the right kind of people doesn’t mean you’ll have a great team. You have to train your team.

In order to train your team, you need to pass on vital information. There are great books available to help you pass on helpful information to your team about the things they need to know to be successful. There are seminars and webinars that cover all kinds of business-related topics. There are business coaches who specialize in educating and training people to be better at what they do.

Making sure that your team has the right information is absolutely essential. But it’s not enough.

There’s an old proverb that says, “It takes more than talk to keep workers in line; mere words go in one ear and out the other.” There’s a lot of wisdom in that old proverb. Of course you’re not simply trying to “keep your workers in line.” You’re trying to make them great employees—who will in turn make your company great.

Employees need to be able to put what they learn in training into action.  It’s one thing to be able to do something during a training session. It’s another matter altogether to perform that task in real-life situations. You can teach someone how to do strategic planning in a classroom, but that’s a lot different than trying to put that plan into action in an environment where you’re dealing with real people and a constantly changing market.

And that’s where it gets really tough being the leader. You need to make sure your people understand what’s expected of them. But then you’ve got to let them do it. And that’s where a lot of leaders fail. Some do a poor job of passing on the right information. Or they assume that employees understand. They don’t clearly communicate their expectations. Others do a good job of communicating, but then jump in at the first sign of trouble—“rescuing” their employees. And their team members don’t learn from real life situations.

Building a great team requires both good information and appropriate action. You need the right tools and information to train your team to get the kind of results you want. But you also need to let them try it and then evaluate—based on clearly define metrics—what went right and what went wrong. And here’s some good news: Getting it “wrong” isn’t all that bad if your people learn from the experience how to get it right next time!

If you’re looking for someone to help you with the tools and the information to train your team—and to help them evaluate how they did—give me a call. I know a guy who just might be able to help you out!