5 Tips for building and leading a high performing team


I’m certain your organisation is committed to improving performance and productivity. It’s one of the main concerns for businesses because it’s the key to success. But how can performance and productivity be achieved and maintained? Well, once again, it’s determined by your people.

In this post we’ve listed 5 tips for building and leading high-performing teams, all of which can be implemented immediately! We’ve spent the last 20 years helping leaders to listen to their people for greater success, communication, employee loyalty and commitment and to create a culture of performance and team work:

Know strengths and weaknesses

Every employee and even every leader has their weaknesses, but it’s how these weaknesses are addressed and managed that determines everything. Leaders should encourage team communication and collaboration in order to identify their people’s weaknesses and strengths. This way, strategic decisions can be made quickly to ensure weaknesses don’t negatively affect the success of the team. Where there are weaknesses there are strengths that can be relied upon.For example, If you’re good at big-picture strategic planning but have a weakness in organization, find someone on your team who has organization as a strength. Optimize the roles people play on the team by keeping each person in their area of strength. If you ask team leaders – or even reflect on your own experience, you’ll know that it’s a constant balancing act when it comes to employee strengths and weaknesses, but when you’ve got the balance right, your team will thrive.

Focus on diversity

Diversity and inclusion is a huge advantage when building high performance teams. According to many studies, diversity in race, culture, skill and ability drives innovation, creates an abundance of resources and ideas, and drives motivation, performance and productivity. One study found that diverse companies produce 19% more revenue.

Set clear and transparent goals

If employees don’t know what they are working towards and what the roadmap looks like, it’s very difficult to feel motivated and even more difficult to find direction – because there is none! For a team to be high-performing, they need a vision with clear, transparent and realistic goals. In some cases it’s important to involve the team in the development of the vision and goals so that they have buy-in and hold some accountability for its success. This way, the entire team will be on the same page as to why the particular goals were established, and the timeline of each of the goals. Goals are the north star that directs the team – without this, performance will certainly dwindle. 

Give and receive constant feedback

Giving and receiving feedback is probably one of the most important, if not the most important factor when it comes to building and leading a high performing team. But it’s not a once-a-year thing, communicating in this way should be constant. Instead of checking in with employees once a year for an annual review, keep an ongoing dialogue of information going back and forth. This is how problems like high staff turnover, absenteeism, low productivity and performance and poor culture is avoided. It’s important that while you give feedback on employee progress and performance, employees also have a place to go to provide information on what they feel and need from you, their team and the organisation.  

Understand your employees’ needs and emotions

Understanding employee needs and emotions will give you, as a leader, important data from which to make better, more strategic decisions. Making decisions with this kind of data and guidance will help you to avoid people-related problems that’ll affect performance, productivity and culture. Our pulse surveys, specially designed to uncover employee emotion, will help you to gather the data you really need to make strategic people-related decisions, in order to build, maintain and lead high-performing teams. 

Master Engagement Throughout the Employee Lifecycle