Over the last decade, a strong trend toward teaming has solidified in the financial services space.
No longer the business of lone wolves, advisors seeking to build world-class firms’ need to take a team-based approach.
While this shift has elevated client service levels and created more stability, it also demands a different skillset from its senior advisors. For advisors where this is a key development topic, here are three suggested areas of focus:
1. Know and support the most meaningful personal and professional initiatives of each team member.
A strong sense of purpose increases job satisfaction, improves morale, and reduces turnover. A 2016 study by Deloitte found that loyalty was strongest in firms that best supported the employees’ personal and professional ambitions.
Our own team has found quarterly goal meetings where each team member shares their top personal and professional focus for the quarter to be an amazing way to create dialog, deepen understanding, and encourage full-team support.
2. Provide tools, feedback, and direction that supports effective, inclusive, and thoughtful communication.
Countless studies have proven the benefits of diverse teams. With diversity comes different styles and approaches to both communication and work. GOOD team leaders will help members better understand and appreciate the strengths of each other’s communication styles and preferences. GREAT leaders will also encourage their teams to adjust their styles and approaches in order to enhance personal and team efficiencies.
3. Adopt a consistent leadership style based on authenticity.
More critical than any given approach is that it must be both consistent and authentic to the leader. Tactics taken from books or articles that are forced or delivered without comfort or sincerity can leave teams unsettled, despite the effort.
And actions that seem incongruent with what the team has seen historically from the leader can leave teams feeling reluctant to share new ideas, take risks or proactively collaborate as freely.
In contrast, when teams feel secure in their leader’s style and it reinforces the desired culture, it becomes much easier for leaders to create a shared vision, proactive collaboration, and a team that is quick to celebrate personal and joint successes.