Once you decide to take on the role of producer, you are also making the decision to take on the role of being in charge of a team. This is something that is not to be taken lightly as others will look to you for guidance. So today I wanted to share with you all the top five things I have learned about being in charge of a team. Hope they help.
1. A team helps you execute, they do not do the job for you- This is the top failing that I encounter when working on shows, in new businesses, or even in starting groups. Once you have become the person in charge, you will be tempted to find anyone to do all of the things you don't want to do. You'll also want to give instructions and walk away. This is a VERY bad idea. If you want to be a great leader, you need to make sure that you are invested in your team and that you are working with them to execute on the vision. You need to check in and see if those tasks are being done and provide guidance throughout the process. Do not walk away from your team or your team may end up walking away from you.
2. Recognition is essential- We all like to be thanked for the work that we do. Many times it seems like we are doing something simple, but still we crave that recognition. Make sure you give it to those you work with. They need to be thanked often and shown appreciation. Take some time to think about the work your team has done. Have you said Thank you yet? If not, stop reading this and fix that now. There are plenty of people who ask us to do things and never thank us. Strive to be one of the few who say Thank You whenever you can. Your team will be that much stronger and they will feel appreciated.
3. Make the work mutually beneficial- If you are asking anyone to do something for you, you should be making sure that they are either learning something from it, getting an experience they need, or receiving some form of mentoring. Avoid ever giving "busy work". Take the time to sit down and ask what you can do to make working with you a learning experience. Ask the other person about their goals and dreams and do your best to give them opportunities to achieve that by working with you. You want your team to be intrinsically motivated and you want them to grow with each bit of work that gets done. If you push for this, you will find that everyone is growing as you move towards the common goal.
4. Be clear about your expectations- Being vague helps no one. For any project that you are working on, make sure you sit down with your team and discuss the specific outcomes that you would like for the project. Set goals and be realistic about what you would like. Come up with milestones and check-in points. Make sure that everyone on the team is clear on the vision and the expectations and very few people will end up being surprised. This also makes it so no one can say "That's not my job"
5. Calendars are your friends- When you meet with the team, create a calendar. Choose due dates and stick to them. Take the time to reverse-engineer the project so that everyone is clear how much time they actually have. One of the biggest mistakes I made in the past involved not adding something to my calendar and thinking I had loads of time. The more clear you are in these instances, the more successful you'll be.
So there you have it, some tools to get your team working with you to get to that next level. Remember, you're the boss and that's a big deal.
No go out and show them how it's done!
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