Check out these top tips from leadership expert, Jamey Gadoury. Jamey and host JT Thomson discussed all things leadership and team building on Scaling Car Washes podcast episode nine!
The Benefits of Raising Leaders and Team Building to Strengthen Your Car Wash Employee Team
Human Connection: A huge benefit of taking the time to do team building exercises with your employee team is the way that it can strengthen relationships among the team members. Employees come to see each other as humans first rather than simply cogs in a machine, and this important shift makes them much more willing to be compassionate and to be patient with each other when difficult situations arise. Relationships take time, but it is worth it!
Team Work: Working as a team results in less conflict and more camaraderie. As employees get to know each other (and you as the owner!) better, it’s much easier to be more amiable and accommodating with each other, which makes the work place environment so much more comfortable and efficient.
Work Culture Built on Relationships: When team building and raising leaders from within your employee work force is a central part of your car wash business, the culture around the workplace becomes more focused on relationships. This results in happier, more loyal employees who are more dedicated to the business and more willing to work out conflicts that arise.
How to Raise Leaders Within Your Car Wash Business
Opportunities to Try and Fail: Give them a chance to fail fast and to fail often. While it is absolutely true that you could likely do the tasks you are giving new leaders more efficiently and with less errors, when you raise leaders, you want them to get lots of practice within the leadership role that will make them stronger leaders who are more able to achieve important goals.
Movement of Team Leaders: Consider the challenges of moving into a management position amid peers. Gadoury outlines a couple of options here – one option, if you have multiple sites, is to move a new leader to a different site to avoid the struggle to establish a leadership role among a peer group. If that is not a practical option, it’s important to simply acknowledge the difficulty of this situation and to help the new leader navigate those dynamics in a way that will be fruitful for everyone.
Invest Time: As you raise leaders in your business, it’s important to consider these efforts as an investment just like the other kinds of investments you make in your business. It takes time and energy, but it is totally worth it because of the way it will strengthen your team and your business!
Mentorship of Team Leaders: Mentor your rising leaders. As you raise leaders, remember to show them the how and the why behind parts of the business so that they better understand how everything operates. Include them in meetings and decisions when possible. Also seize opportunities to mentor your employees in general when possible. That will give you a chance to identify potential leaders and to share your knowledge and expertise with your team while also strengthening those relationships.
How to Team Build Successfully in Your Car Wash Business
Team Building Exercises: Incorporate authentic team building exercises. These can be on site or off site, and they can be led by an outside expert or by you as the business owner, but they should be designed as structured activities focused on getting to know the team more fully. By learning each other’s strengths and weaknesses and by seeing team members more fully as people outside of the workplace, employees will be more dedicated to the business.
Invest in Team Building: Remember that it is an investment, and it will pay off. Instead of considering team building as a box to check off on a to do list, work to make it an integral part of your workplace culture.
Feedback Loop: Remember to close the feedback loop! Simply doing team building exercises without following up on them misses some of the most valuable aspects of the activities. Come back to that time together frequently and ask important questions about how that time and those activities have impacted the work days that followed.
The Role of the Car Wash Business Owner When You Raise Leaders and Team Build
Be a mentor: You are the leader of your work force, and your role is so critical! You have so many opportunities to share your knowledge and expertise, which can help build up your team and raise leaders within your employee workforce!
Take the time needed: So much of the success of team building and leadership development programs depends on the time invested in them! Remember that even in an industry that is often extremely fast-paced, it’s okay (and important!) to slow down to take the time needed to raise those leaders in your workplace and to build a powerful, united team that works well together.
Feedback: Make time to check in on a personal level with each employee on a routine basis. Build this into your car wash team culture so that employees know that you’ll be checking in with them routinely. This requires an investment in time and energy, but it will result in happier employees and in opportunities for you to learn what your team members’ individual aspirations and desires are, which will help you raise leaders from within your organization.
Recommended Resources for Raising Leaders and Team Building
Don’t miss these great resources that Jamey Gadoury shared on the episode!
Resources You Can Use for Team Building
Hogan Assessments: This set of personality assessments can help with team building. There are affordable options that you can administer yourself to get to know your team members better.
Brown Bag Lunch Idea: If specific assessments aren’t going to work well with your team members, you can simply organize a lunch where you talk with the employees and get some conversations going among team members. Jamey suggests that business owners use a TED talk or a fun event at lunch and then simply chat with employees about topics like what could make the team better, what is important to each person, or what crazy ideas people might have for the business. He also notes that simply teaching the employees something about the business during that community lunch gathering could be really valuable!
Fail Fast, Fail Often: How Losing Can Help You Win by Ryan Babineaux and John Krumboltz
The CEO’s Guide to Cohesive Leader Teams – Don’t miss this e-book on Jamey’s website!