Here are four areas I think will continue to be very important for team leaders in 2016:
1. Virtualization and mobility - Whether we are called upon to lead a virtual team, or our team members become more mobile in their workplaces and workflow, honing skills as a virtual team leader is important. I'll be doing an upcoming series of blog posts on this topic and you can also check out past posts I've written on virtual team leadership here.
Also connected to this topic is the idea of leading meetings and hosting training or development opportunities for your team. Virtual Facilitation is a skill set that is increasingly important for so many team leaders today. I'll be holding the next 15 hour Virtual Facilitation Skills Intensive training program online on Thursdays from 12 - 3 pm Eastern/New York from February 4 - March 4th (five weeks of 3 hour blocks). During this 15 hour course you get ample practice and exposure to creating and leading engaging virtual training, meetings and other discussions suing a wide range of platforms including zoom, skype, and several of the mainstream platforms. Learn more about the Virtual Facilitation Skills Intensive program here and reserve your spot.
2. Continued focus on honing coaching skills - As it is often said "Conversations are the currency of business". Supporting your team and yourself in having better conversations can payoff in dividends. Your skills as coach as leader are key, and you may also place a focus on honing peer coaching skills so team members can support each other.
Coaching skills training is one of the mainstays of our business and in the last twelve years we've trained thousands of coaches and leaders in coaching skills. Learn more about the in person, virtual and e-learning programs we have on coaching skills by contacting us.
3. Supporting Team members in working across differences - Workplaces today are incredibly diverse. Whether the diversity exists because you are cross-functional team, a gene rationally diverse team, or a global team spanning multiple cultures, team members can benefit from knowing more about their styles and preferences, how this impacts others positively or negatively, and also how they may want to learn to flex their styles.
We use a number of different assessments in support of developing self-awareness and skills in these areas including the Everything DiSC and the Team Diagnostic Survey for teams, partnered with team coaching.
4. Strengthening Relationships - Just as conversation is the currency of business, business is done through relationships. Whether relationships are virtual, in person, team leaders will need to continue to navigate a variety of relationships from their team, to their boss, to other peer team leaders, stakeholders etc. I'll be focusing more on relationship management skills in the month of February, and also check out past posts on the topic of relationship management.
Skills in the areas of influence, motivation and negotiation will continue to be important areas to focus on for team leaders.
What do you see as key challenges and focus areas for team leaders in 2016.
Have a great back to work start for 2016!
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