Balancing Team Development with Operational Duties

In today’s post-pandemic environment, companies are finding it increasingly difficult to keep up with growth expectations. Management teams are torn between focusing more time on operations or finding and training employees. When managers don’t spend the appropriate amount of time on each task, it disrupts the balance between operations, sales and talent acquisition. The challenge for many organizations is knowing where to invest their time and resources to help grow top-line sales. Our research shows that in order to be successful, managers should spend about half their time on employee development, followed by selling and ultimately operations. You only have so much time. So how do you manage this balancing act? The key is to re-prioritize operational tasks to leave enough time to train your future leaders. This can be done by devising a plan to implement labor standards using workforce management software, but it also requires getting your hands dirty with operational improvements in day-to-day duties. To get you started, we’ve outlined three steps to help you better incorporate team development into your regular schedule:

Invest in the Best Talent

Finding the time and resources to attract the brightest talent can be a huge undertaking. The costs associated with hiring recruiters and eventually training a new employee can often outweigh the benefit of expanding your team. But when investing in talent acquisition initiatives, remember to think quality over quantity. Take time to find the best fit for your team—candidates who are well matched for a position are far more likely to become productive employees. Some hires can even help make the whole team better. A dynamic supervisor, for example, can create a more engaged team, leading to improved performance.

Show the Value of Team Development

The best way (and sometimes the most challenging way) to refocus your efforts is to go directly to the source: your management team. Educating your management team to help them realize the importance of team development is the first step in creating true, measurable change. Find ways to demonstrate how employee development directly connects to positive business outcomes and offer ways in which they can reorganize their current methods. For example, through labor modeling, you can show that having the right staff at the right time can improve conversion and customer experience. The more thoroughly developed a team is, the more likely you are to have the right staff.

Encourage Managers to Educate

For continuous improvement to occur, continuing education must take place. The best way to make sure this all-important task doesn’t fall by the wayside is to incorporate it into daily work schedules. It’s no secret that most people learn by example, but it’s surprising how rarely managers take time from their day to actually teach their team. Simply giving your team opportunities to learn through real-world experience in areas they’re unfamiliar with can make all the difference. 

Make sure your managers are not only providing their teams with hands-on experiences, but also encourage them to let employees apply what they have learned. Hold your managers accountable for educating their team on a regular basis.

To learn more about how to use team development for the benefit of your business, schedule a free consultation. We look forward to working with you to find the solution that works best for you and your team.