As students you will be operating in teams of some sort. Whether it is flatmates trying to make decisions around a cleaning roster or an assignment group negotiating who should produce what aspects of the work. You will be in teams in your part-time job, voluntary work, in clubs or sports. It’s how we work together and it is likely you will find yourself in a huge variety of teams your whole life. So working effectively with others is really important. Participants of Victoria’s service and leadership programme, Victoria Plus, recently had the pleasure of hearing from the top ranking female officer in the New Zealand Defence Force on developing high performance teams. Her practical and positive advice gave us the chance to reflect on our own behaviours and understand the value of stopping and asking questions of yourself and others around you. Her top five tips centred around:

#1 Being mindful that your leadership journey never ends. So be prepared to keep learning and listen to feedback. There is always something we can improve on.

#2 Understand what given authority you have in your role and what is your personally earned authority – a good balance is important so you don’t just tell people what to do – you gain their trust and respect to pull together.

#3 Model your team’s / organisation’s core values. If there is a mismatch of values, you will not be able to lead effectively.

#4 Look after yourself. Staying healthy and managing a sensible work/life balance will help you be more resilient and will ensure you are able to be there as a leader.

#5 Be aware of who you are – strategic self-awareness. Be prepared to ask yourself: How am I perceived; what am I trying to achieve; how do I know I am effective?

Image credit Brice Blondel (flickr)

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Leadership, Motivation, Personal development, Skills development