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How Great Leaders Help Their Teams Excel

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Great Leaders expect great work from their teams. It is the ongoing commitment and deliberate practice that helps build a great team. The question is how great leaders discover their team’s potential and allow them to express it fully.

Developing the team is like growing seeds to becoming a tree. The seed needs three ingredients – water, correct temperature or warmth, and good soil (environment). During its early stages of growth, the seedling relies upon the food supplies stored with it in the seed until it is large enough for its leaves to begin making food through photosynthesis.

Similarly,  a team needs three ingredients to develop – ‘Trust,’ ‘Coaching,’ and ‘Opportunities to stretch.’

  1. Establishing a foundation of trust and acceptance: Just as the seed needs good soil, likewise, a team also needs a right environment- an atmosphere of trust and acceptance that builds the foundation for having meaningful and open conversations, beyond just day to day regular activities or performance.  Development discussions include aptitudes, interests, guiding the different paths, and how leaders can help team members achieve what they want.
  1. Investing time and coaching the team:  Water and warmth are needed for the growth of a seed. Similarly, nurturing and supporting the team is essential for their growth. Great leaders take time out from their schedule to invest, coach, and grow their team. And when the right opportunity comes, they delegate work to enable the team to demonstrate their potential.
  1. Provide opportunities to stretch: As a plant grows, the leaves begin to make their food by absorbing the sunlight and through photosynthesis. Similarly, as the team grows, leaders need to provide challenging opportunities because giving someone a good challenge, and a real stretch allows them to develop and unlock their potential. Teams then set a high bar and provide support to those working to reach it.


Plants need water, warmth, nutrients from the soil, and light to continue to grow. Similarly, a team also needs regular feedback, rewards & recognitions to enable them to grow and excel.

Successful Ways to Encourage Employee Development

  1. Provide regular feedback: Regular feedback is a gift that every team member receives to realize those aspects where something is not being done in the right manner and needs correction. A great leader can point out those blind spots and enable us to find the way out to resolve and do course corrections. This gift truly nourished a person’s growth.
  2. Encourage and Applaud: Development is a journey – when too many obstacles and challenges are there, some may tend to give up. Great leaders work together with their team to improve their performance. If you believe in their potential, they will meet the confidence and excel. Holding the team members accountable for their performance is as important as encouraging and motivating them. Appreciation for their excellent work and accomplishments to team members are like nutrients in the soil that enable the plant to grow faster and stronger.


Wrapping up

Personalized learning is the way of life today. Every person should own their growth and career path. The sky is the limit, especially when changes are happening fast. There is no limit to creativity and innovation in today’s world. Great leaders help their team to explore, develop on their potential, and excel in everything they do.

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