How to Build Your Dream Team

It starts with strong hiring and retention programs.

As managers, our most important asset is our people and the expertise they provide. So how do we build engaged teams? How important is leadership’s example?

The design and delivery of innovative, top-quality services requires a careful combination of three main elements:

  • Innovation through employee engagement
  • A proactive, robust approach to employee retention
  • A top-down focus on vision, mission goals, and maximization of staff involvement to drive outcomes

No matter what your organization’s mission requires, a transparent organizational structure and inspirational leadership are vital. Equally essential is an effective hiring process to identify top talent and build a winning team. From there, creating personal and professional growth opportunities for employees helps them feel supported, which adds value to your team and helps retain talented staff members.

Vision is the glue that binds your team and guides operations to achieve mission success.

What’s Retention Got to Do with It?

Retention has a significant impact on your organization’s culture and the experience of those your organization exists to serve. A number of key factors affect turnover and retention rates:

  • Project completion
  • Promotions and vacancies
  • Changing conditions in the larger labor market
  • Organizational changes and shifting priorities
  • Poor performance, which can cast a shadow on staff and affect morale and productivity

An important antidote to some of these changes is simpler than you think: Good communication. A proactive, open approach to employee training and management is one way of accomplishing this, along with conducting quarterly assessments of internal activities to address issues efficiently and quickly. Periodic surveys will help you understand employee concerns, and perks—such as tuition reimbursement and recognition for high performance—will reinforce management’s commitment to employee growth and engagement.

Top-Down Management: You Set the Tone

In all of this, it is important to remember that as the leader of your organization, you are the critical pace setter for your employees, the touchstone and example for them to follow, as well as the model for how they feel about themselves, their careers, and the company as a whole.

Effective leadership requires a clear understanding of your goals, mission, and vision for the future. Your job is to shape the experience for your employees to engage them and inspire them to do their best work. Here are some ways to drive this effort:

  • Build confidence through professional development programs.
  • Model community involvement to help employees feel a part of something bigger than themselves.
  • Share your passion for your organization and its work.

While it might seem daunting at times, mastering employee recruitment, empowerment, and retention really comes down to a mixture of passion, engagement, support, and vision. Add an expert team to an organization that has a diligent focus, a proven service and delivery process, and you have a recipe for an unstoppable, winning enterprise.

Staci Redmon is President and CEO of Strategy and Management Services, Inc. SAMS is a two time winner of Washington Technology’s Fast 50 list, and was named a 2016 Future 50 award winner by SmartCEO. Additionally, Ms. Redmon was among Enterprising Women’s 2016 Enterprising Women of the Year and was selected by the Small Business Administration as the 2016 Northern Virginia Small Business Person of the Year.