Team engagement is one of the most important aspects of team performance. Team leaders should have a heightened awareness of their team engagement. It is easy for members to slip into disengagement, so we have put together three ways to increase the engagement of every team member.
1. Make your team members feel valued.
The best meetings are the product of members feeling vital and valued. When they take a genuine interest in the discussion topics, collaborate, and show care for each other, their connection gets stronger, and the relationship is nurtured. Recognize your team’s value. Share the impact they have on you as a leader and how they are helping you accomplish your goals and objectives. When team members voice their opinions, seize the moment to thank them for it. Making team members feel valued and important will help you increase overall team engagement.
2. Preparation helps members feel safe.
Give your team members plenty of notice with the meeting agenda before the meeting and encourage them to prepare in advance. Make the time to share your impact on their preparation and ask them for their feedback when creating the next agenda so all members feel included and heard. Include weekly check-ins on their emotional experience so that they have space to share their stressors and difficult moments. Prepare to slow things down as emotions are shared, then provide plenty of reassurance and appreciation for sharing vulnerabilities and fears.
3. Engage team members in every meeting.
Engaging team members shape a stronger team alliance and a new level of emotional connection, constructing a secure relationship for further exploration and engagement. It provides a message of value, care, and interest. It also sets curiosity to come prepared to meetings, take time to think about challenges, and conduct research before coming to meetings.
Use validation, reassurance, and appreciation when team members demonstrate care and value of others. Reach out and share your impact, both positive and negative, when you experience a disconnect or disengagement to invite team members to share their concerns openly and honestly. How you respond to these moments is key to how safe they feel to share their vulnerabilities.
These markers are just the beginning of helping your team be more engaged. Team engagement is one aspect of positive team dynamics.
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