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Four Ways to Help Your Team Advance

There’s no “i” in team, right? What better way to propel your career and feel the satisfaction of group collaboration than having your team succeed right there along with you, right?

According to a recent post on The Daily Muse, there are several ways to move forward, in particular if you’re managing a team right now. And if not, and you’re on the track for managing editor or even a promotion to oversee a few associates, it’s not a bad idea to start thinking about ways to achieve group goals.

1. Discuss goals. For starters, as a manager, you can sit down individually with each team member to discuss desired goals. And if you’re not a manager right now, you can flip this and schedule a meeting with your own manager to ensure your goals are being discussed. Considering every manager isn’t proactive, it’s important to take the bull by the horns as you pummel upward in the masthead.

As for managers, Anne Niederkorn advises in the piece, “Really listen and get to know each employee, and discuss any gaps in skills or experience between where he or she is today and where he or she wants to go. At this point, you can decide together what specific things might help each individual down his or her desired path.”

2. Identify team gaps. Now that you’ve identified your groups’ goals, it’s time to determine their weaknesses as well as holes in their game. Maybe it’s a platform like WordPress, maybe it’s a skill like interviewing techniques. Whatever it is, there’s always going to be room for improvement in one area or another.

3. Establish training objectives. Which leads us to the next pointer, training. Niederkorn adds in the piece,

“Once you’ve identified where someone can grow, it’s not enough to tell her to “learn how to do this task better.” You’ll get the best results if you create very specific training objectives (and put them on paper!). These objectives should include the action desired, a deadline, and the method of evaluation, which clearly shows how an employee can be successful at a particular task.”

4. Make it fun! Par-tay, anyone?  How about a little fun after work for drinks? Or maybe unstructured things like bagels every Friday or informal chats? The writer recommends “Munch ‘n Learns” with her own employees. “Once a month or so, I bring in scones from a favorite bakery and someone does an informal presentation on something she learned recently. It’s a great way to make learning and training a part of the team culture.”

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