Understanding Your Team

Photo Source: Twitter
Photo Source: Twitter

Understanding Your Team

We are heading into an exciting New Year and it is the perfect opportunity to review the holiday season with your team, provide guidance on their areas of strength and the opportunity areas to work on and improve for the new year. In several posts I have covered some of the common areas of opportunity with team members and leaders for improved development, as well as individual and team growth and maximized productivity. For example:

2016 Key Focus Items: These are the 8 most common areas that references state as a candidate’s greatest opportunity areas.

Deadly Sins of Retail Communication: Which identifies the frustrating communication misses of senior leadership to their teams.

Fostering a Culture of Employee Advocacy In Retail: That details the importance of brand advocacy to your team. What they want to know and what they need to know to be your biggest supporters.

70% of Employee Quit Their Job Everyday (But They Still Keep Showing Up For Work): Which tells us exactly what our team members want to hear from us to feel engaged and supported.

We have this very important (but general) knowledge of what employees are hungry for and wish to experience to create a strong, happy, and productive workplace that is conducive to their growth path. But…as any leader in retail knows, teams and the people that form those teams cannot be painted with the same brush. Each team is a diverse assortment of talent and each individual inside the team is unique and brings their personality, style, and perspective to their role and the collective unit.

If you have a post-holiday meeting with your team, which hopefully you do, it’s a great time to speak to future trends and what lies ahead in 2016 for the company, the team, your area, and your customer. It’s also a great time to find out about your team members. People change, they evolve, they reinvent themselves, sometimes without even realizing it. In the past, at my post holiday meetings I have selected an assessment tool and asked all my employees to complete the assessment and send me a copy of the results page or full-report. I then can compile the results and speak to our awesomely diverse team and can tailor our planning to resonate best with the team. I am also able to leverage strengths on the team and establish mentors for team members who are in need of development in certain areas. Even if you don’t have a meeting, you can ask your team to complete these assessments as way to have a clear understanding of the strengths and diversity of your collective team.

My meeting this year is a little different as the company I currently work for is shuttering all stores and operations as of January 9th, so my meeting is a finale wrap up meeting but we are still assessing working personalities and styles so that our team members can speak to their strengths and opportunities in their new roles with their new companies and leadership.

These are the two assessments we are using:

True Colors Personality Quiz
-This quiz is probably one of the first leadership assessments I ever completed but it is strangely accurate if the people taking it are honest about themselves. I amOrange/Green.


Sally Hogshead’s How To Fascinate. As luck would have it…I received 75 free assessments to gift out, so for the first 75 people that read this blog post, if you wish to try it, use code JOY-RetailExcellence2016 once you access the How To Fascinate link above, you can get your report for free. It’s a great assessment and a supportive program that periodically gives you additional insight on your results.

There are also a number of other assessments you can try, such as:
Jung Typology Test
-Which can help understand communication and learning styles of your type
-Discover careers and occupations most suitable for your personality type

Truity Scientific Personality Assessment
-A relatively inexpensive assessment that can help identify personality and learning styles and what motivates your team members.

Clifton Strength’s Finder 2.0
-Also has a cost associated with it but it is a great tool to assess business strengths and gauge the diversity of styles on your team

Identifying traits and styles, what motivates people, how to better develop them, how each person can work in partnership with others will help set your team up for success. Allowing people to find out more about themselves will help them identify their natural strengths and the areas that need to be developed.

Setting your team and yourself up on a path to be highly productive this year is key to high-performance and exceeding expectations of your senior leadership and, most importantly, the customer experience. Let’s make 2016 a spectacular year!


Founder and Editor in Chief of Excellence In Retail and 18 year retailer. I am a passionate and creative leader and coach committed to inspiring thought, action, truth-telling, solution-seeking, and dialog about how to maximize talent through identifying and creating a process around critical success factors, workplace culture, signature leadership practices, productivity, profitability, alignment of employees and company vision & values, and workplace happiness inside all retail organizations. I help create healthy, vibrant, high-performing, and highly-productive organizations that are talent magnets and focused on delivering the highest level of customer experience that will differentiate them from competition and result in long-term growth and sustainability.

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