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Building a High-Performance Team: Strategies for Recruiting, Retaining, and Developing Top Talent

So, your company is cruising along, bringing in the money, and you’re ready to scale up. Fantastic! Now comes the real challenge: assembling a high-performance team that can support your lofty ambitions. Think of it like trying to organize a flash mob with toddlers—challenging, but oh-so-rewarding.

First things first: Recruiting.

This isn’t just a game of musical chairs; it’s more like casting for the next Marvel blockbuster. You need top-tier talent that fits their roles perfectly and brings something special to the table. We have all made the mistake of hiring to fast to fill a spot and regretted that disastrous decision.

Get Clear on Your Needs

Define the roles you need to fill. Are you on the hunt for a number-crunching wizard, a creative sorcerer, or a tech guru? Be specific. I find we have to reevaluate often as your needs grow so will your expectations.

Use Assessments

Just like a good director uses screen tests, you need assessments to identify candidates’ strengths and weaknesses. I no longer hire based on resumes I have been using a tool called the Harrison for 20 years it’s truly the DNA of how to manage someone! 

Culture Fit

Skills are important, but culture fit is paramount. You want to hire people who not only have the right skills but also align with your company’s vibe. If your office is more like an episode of “The Office,” make sure your hires appreciate a good prank and some dry humor.

Take Mark he owns a construction company. They were struggling to find a marketing lead who could navigate their quirky company culture. After several failed hires, they used a culture fit assessment like the Harrison alongside traditional interviews. The result? They found Jamie, who not only had the skills but also brought a ukulele to the interview and played a song about brand strategy. Jamie’s been a hit ever since, both in meetings and at office karaoke nights.

Retaining: Keeping the Talent Happy

Once you’ve assembled your dream team, the next step is keeping them. Imagine you’ve got all the kids smiling in the holiday photo, now you need to keep them from running off to play in the mud.

Continuous Training

Don’t be that owner who trains their team once and expects flawless performance forever. Think of your team like a beloved pet—they need constant training, treats, and encouragement. Think about how many times you have to tell your dog sit, give them new skills to chew on regularly.

Recognition and Rewards

When your team hits their targets, don’t just give them a pat on the back—give them a treat! Incentives, bonuses, and public recognition go a long way. It’s like giving your dog a belly rub—they’ll keep coming back for more.

Career Development

Help your team see a future with your company. Provide opportunities for growth, whether through promotions, new projects, or further education.

One of my clients Janet owned a multimillion-dollar MedSpa and she used to lose employees faster than you can say “exit interview.”  We revamped their training program to include monthly workshops and introduced a recognition system where employees earned badges and bonuses for achievements.

Result? A 50% reduction in turnover and a much happier, more engaged team. Plus, the badges look pretty snazzy on their LinkedIn profiles. What gets rewarded gets repeated! 

Developing

Transforming Good to Great A high-performance team doesn’t happen overnight. It’s a continuous process of development. Think of it like gardening: you need to water, prune, and occasionally deal with a few weeds.

Regular Assessments

Just like a gardener checks on their plants, you need to regularly assess your team’s performance. Use 360-degree feedback, self-assessments, and peer reviews to get a full picture.

Accountability

Here’s where the humor stops and the tough love begins. Accountability is crucial. Don’t be a seagull manager—flying in, pooping on everyone’s heads, and then flying away. Be an eagle: watchful, decisive, and inspiring.

Ongoing Training

Invest in regular training sessions. Keep your team’s skills sharp and up-to-date. Like a dog learning new tricks, your team needs to stay agile and adaptable.

Seagull vs. Eagle Management

Let’s talk about management styles. Are you a seagull or an eagle? Seagull managers swoop in, make a mess, and leave their team to clean it up. They’re great at pointing out problems but terrible at providing solutions.

Eagle managers, on the other hand, have a clear vision. They soar high, but they’re also keen observers. They provide direction, support, and aren’t afraid to get their talons dirty when needed. Be an eagle. Your team will appreciate the clarity, direction, and the occasional pep talk.

Final Thoughts

Building a high-performance team takes effort, strategy, and a good dose of humor. Recruit wisely, retain with care, and develop constantly. Avoid the pitfalls of seagull management and aim to be an eagle. With the right approach, you’ll not only scale your business but also create a workplace where top talent thrives. If you need help in putting  a plan together and stop winging it drop me a email.  This is a long game and a strategy! Now, go out there and start assembling your dream team! And remember, a little treat and a belly rub never hurt anyone.

👉 Contact me now and let’s begin building your high-performance team!

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