1.1 The role of the team leader
The fundamental role of the team leader is to lead their team effectively in a manner which maximises the efficiency and productivity of the team for the benefit of the wider organisation. This should then ensure that the targets set are being met by that team.
A leader needs to act as a role model by encouraging their team to adopt the principles of the visions and values of the organisation. This should help encourage these principles to filter down to each member of the team, ensuring that the team as a whole adopts the right approach, style, culture and focus. In relation to Riverside, this should ultimately improve the service we deliver to our customers (should this be tenants, other divisions/teams within Riverside or any other stakeholders), which is the focal point of our vision and values.
1.2 The responsibilities of the team leader within the team
The role of team leader encompasses a host of various responsibilities that have to be carried out in order to run an effective team.
A leader should motivate their team, this is fundamental for the team’s productivity and ensuring it achieves its goals. Appraising and developing team members is important, development and self fulfilment will improve the morale of the team and would filter back to increasing levels of motivation. Appraisals are equally as important as they highlight areas of improvement. A team’s ability to reflect, work and improve on weaknesses is the only way a team will evolve and develop.
A team leader needs to care, be considerate and converse effectively with the team. Appreciation of commitments and challenges outside of work need to be considered and compromises made for the benefit of the team members as well as the team. Consideration must be made to support the team and ensure they are able to achieve delivery of tasks set. Finally, effective, two-way communication is vital. Not only is the clarity of a leader’s instruction important, but team members must be made to feel comfortable in raising queries or concerns.
1.3 Limits of the team leader’s authority and their accountability
There are instances where a team leader may be required to pass certain responsibilities onto other departments within the organisation or refer to a colleague above them hierarchically regarding matters relating to their team.
Firstly, a team leader must be conscious of their remit in terms of decision making. It is important that a team carries out their duties in a way that will achieve the strategy and goals set by senior management and Directors. A team leader’s responsibility is to ensure this happens and that the team doesn’t deviate away from this, even if the team leader has differing ideas or methods. Team leaders need to adopt a “One Riverside” approach, consistently working towards the same goals and pulling in the same direction as every other department within the vast organisation that is Riverside.
Team Leaders may also need assistance and support from other areas of the organisation, such as Human Resources. The leader will encounter a wide range of private, personal issues when managing a team of people, some being work related and some not. HR Departments are fully trained and more qualified in dealing with matters of this nature and if the team leader feels an issue has escalated to a substantial level, they may feel as though they need additional support and advice from this department. A team leader may require such advice if a member of the team is going through pregnancy, for instance. Not only does the leader need to be aware of up to date legislation and organisational policy (maternity leave, time off required for scans etc) to advise his or her colleague, but additional support in the workplace may be needed as the physical demands of pregnancy may make it harder for them to carry out their job effectively.