Growing Great Teams – Part 1


This is the first in a series of blogs on Growing Great Teams. 

There are the often quoted and very legitimate reasons why we should invest in a great team:

  • Better customer relations;
  • Increased sales;
  • Improved profitability; and
  • Better share prices.

A great team is also a powerful tool to attract new “great” people and to retain people who enjoy the benefits and kudos associated with being part of a “great” team.

However, there is a less obvious but increasingly important reason why investing in a great team is a smart business decision and that is – the cost of no time out!

One measure of the effectiveness of a team is the impact on the business when the owners or leaders take extended leave (either planned or otherwise).  If the business flounders during the owners/leaders absence it can be an indication that the team:

  • is undermanned;
  • inadequately trained;
  • not empowered to step up; or
  • a myriad of other reasons that suggest that there may be an under investment in people, systems and leadership.

There is a measurable financial cost.

As a consequence of this cost and in order to mitigate this risk, the owners/leaders often choose not to take leave.  Here lies this less obvious cost.  The emotional cost and the cost to the well-being of owners/leaders who choose this path can be significant and pervasive.

This cost is becoming increasingly impactful because life expectancy is increasing and retirement ages are pushing out.  Owners/leaders are staying in business for longer which means that they must be both financially and emotionally sustainable over an extended period of time.  A significant part of enabling this longevity in business is the ability to have holidays, to rejuvenate and come back with higher energy and a mindset more conducive to innovativeness and business growth.

The low energy and reduced passion caused by a lack of time out, comes at a huge cost to business and flows through to the team, the customers and the business community.

Being indispensable is not a sustainable strategy – investing in building a great team is.


Part 2 of this blog series considers how to build cultures that attract and retain the right people.  Click here to read, it is packed with insights.

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