When you are building a company you can follow standard management techniques and set-up a hierarchy structure with operation plans, and bring experienced team members from successful businesses, then start doing the everyday work with a motto like “this is how it is done.” You can succeed with this approach, but you will never have an A-team that can change the core of your industry.
What is an A-Team?
It is a team that believes in the company, which will follow you and your vision in situations when it is not comfortable for them. They will trust you and you will trust them – a similar trust like you have in your family. They will not leave for a better paying job when a new opportunity comes around for them, because your company environment is priceless, and cannot be bought with money. This team will expect an open culture, extraordinary team members around them and the feeling that they are working for something bigger than just a standard company.
Maybe it sounds crazy in the forex industry to build this type of company culture; but it is possible and important. This team has to be managed by a leader with vision, someone who knows that, although it may be small, the company is able to make a real change in the industry. And then when conditions are right, you will have an A-team.
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Let’s look at two principles that I believe are the most important when you build your own A-team.
First of all, you need to hire the right people. But that is not easy, right? I suggest you follow the principle of “tribal leadership.” You need to hire people who are at least on stage 3 (“I am great”), but it is better if the candidates are on stage 4 (“We are great”). And as manager you need to continually support them to move to the 4th and 5th level (“Life is great”). Then you can have the right people for your future A-team. To learn more about tribal leadership, I suggest you search on TED.com.
The second piece of advice is to follow the three important principles of modern leadership. Mr. Dan Pink called them Autonomy, Mastery and Purpose. Meaning that a team that includes only 4- or 5-level employees has absolute autonomy at work – you can trust them, and you as leader can support them in their self-driven work attitude. As the leader, you have to support work conditions where your team members feel they are each the master of what they are doing. And the last thing is purpose; They must feel that all the work they are doing is consistent with the company’s vision.
A good example is a story from our company. When we moved from shared servers to our own servers I did one key thing. I said to my colleague, “Here is your “Christmas gift,” and gave him access to the MetaTrader server. He installed it on his PC, and after a few weeks he became a master of the MetaTrader server. He built his own plugins; So that he is able to, with one click, move all the MetaTrader server data from one old shared server to another, with all the history and open positions. It is just one example of what plugins can do on servers. If there are any matches in Forex Magnates between server specialists and programmers, I will always bet on him. Because he is part of an A-team.
As leaders and managers, sometimes we think we know better than our employees. But when you can put aside your own ego and start making small changes in your leadership/manager’s mind, then amazing things begin to happen. We need to build trust with colleagues and support key values and principles of modern management. So are you ready to build an A-team in your company?