As I’ve discussed previously, a happy team is a loyal, productive team.  So, if you are a team leader, remember that your people are your most important resource, and think about how you can invest in them in 2020.

Team member perks, like ping pong tables, free lunch and Friday afternoon drinks, are a good way to make people happy, but I have also found that simply bringing the team together to share an experience can be even more valuable. I like to schedule quarterly offsite activities for to bring the team together and help them forge stronger connections and build lasting relationships. This activity can be something as simple as bowling or karaoke, but it goes a long way in creating a sense of community for staff. Sharing experiences helps build understanding and trust among team members who may not necessarily work alongside each other on a daily basis. And, if your team is growing rapidly, it gives staff the opportunity to get to know their new team members.

It is easy to say that you listen, but you must also take action and demonstrate that you are following up their ideas or concerns. Even a small gesture, like a quick email or a Slack message, can show team members that you care about their needs and experience. Even if you could not find a short-term solution to a problem, the fact that you listened and responded is a significant step forward.

Similarly, encourage staff to share their different opinions and points of view, as this can help bring your team to a better decision. Asking for input shows that you value their contribution and trust their decisions. It also shows that you are open to different ideas and you are willing to delegate tasks and share your leadership position. You can involve the team by giving them a space in which to share their input, such as a Slack channel or meeting, or simply by asking for suggestions.

Investing in your team should be treated as an ongoing effort. Prioritising team investment early on will create a sense of community, strength the company culture and improve productivity. The New Year is a great opportunity to reflect on how you are doing in this area and what changes you can make over the coming months.