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A Word on Improving Team Dynamics

Aaron Montgomery says there are things to avoid and watch out for when it comes to improving the team dynamic at a shop

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Aaron Montgomery, head of MontCo Consulting and longtime industry veteran, says there are things to avoid and watch out for when it comes to improving the team dynamic at a shop.

Show me the money

Paying your employees a decent wage is a great way to cut down on turnover, but Montgomery says that doesn’t always guarantee excellent dynamics. “The paycheck will only drag your team so far,” he says. If a team can’t connect with the ‘why’ of being part of your company, the quality of work and morale in the workplace will suffer.

The blame game

Montgomery advises being on the lookout for constant shifts of blame across the board in departments. Disconnected employees will “simply be worried about covering their own backs,” he adds. “They don’t care about problem-solving or finding solutions.”

That kind of behavior can manifest itself in everything from poor customer service to sabotage between departments.

Meaningful meetings

Having meetings to have meetings eats up time and can have a negative impact on the staff. Montgomery suggests making sure each meeting has value in it for those attending and that whatever information covered can be disseminated back to their teams, ultimately lifting the business up.

Take feedback

Periodically asking for input from the staff also makes them feel valued, and that will filter back into the quality of work they output, says Montgomery.

By implementing some of these tactics, Montgomery says shops will see the following trends:

  1. Improved problem solving: “When you have a good team dynamic, it reduces overhead because your employees are figuring out ways to do things like reduce spoilage and improve efficiency because they feel connected,” Montgomery suggests.
  2. Better customer service: Connected employees “care about the company, and it shows,” says Montgomery. “The customers will see and feel that, and you’ll build a more loyal customer base.”
  3. Increased productivity: “Your team will be working together more frequently, which equals more output and profit,” notes Montgomery.
  4. An overall enjoyable environment: Making improvements in team dynamics, Montgomery says, will make the shop a better place to spend your workday. “This means both happy and healthy employees as well as a happy and healthy boss,” he adds.
alleebruce

Alexandria Bruce

Allee Bruce is the managing editor of GRAPHICS PRO and WRAPS magazines.

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