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Bringing you the latest insights from the inside sales, customer care, and account management subject matter experts here at Salelytics.
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Sales Scape

6 Tips for Leading Large Teams to Success

by Lisa Nelson
June 28, 2023
A VP's Take on Unlocking the Power of Effective Leadership

The goal of any business is to grow. Growth is a sign of progress and success, but as a manager, when your team starts expanding, things begin to change. The leadership strategies you used to use don’t produce the desired result anymore, there suddenly isn’t enough time in the day, and you start to get overwhelmed. So, what do you do? You take a different approach.

For those who don't know, I lead one of the largest B2B teams at Salelytics. The group started with 91 workers, then 140, and continued to grow to the roughly 400 employees our team has today, and let me say it's a challenge and pleasure all in one.

In doing this for 20 years, I’ve learned that as your team grows, so should your leadership strategy. Here are 6 tips I’ve learned from my time leading large groups, that will help you become a leadership superstar.


1. Do Your Best to Get to Know Employees at All Levels

As a leader, it’s important to try and make connections with as many of your employees as you can. This gets more difficult as teams grow, but building relationships across your department will help you identify talent and recognize issues sooner. It also is a great way to contribute to a culture built on compassion and understanding. To be clear, building relationships and connections is not the same thing as managing all your team members. Managing every member of a large team is exhausting, inefficient, and borderline impossible, which leads me to my next tip.


2. Invest in Directors/Managers You Can TRUST

As your team grows you’ll realize that you can’t manage everyone directly, at least not to the same degree as if your reports are only a handful of people. Think of it this way, if your team is 30 people, and if you did weekly 30-minute one-on-ones with everyone, that alone would take 15 hours, that’s nearly half of the workweek. And that’s only with a team of 30! While it’s important to try and connect with all of your employees, you cannot possibly be everywhere at once. That’s why you have to rely on and delegate to leaders you have confidence in. Allowing others to take some of the load not only lets you focus on the most vital tasks in your day but also shows your team you have faith in them while aiding in their professional development.


3. Promote Effective Communication

We all played the game “Telephone” when we were kids, where everyone gets in a line and a message is passed from person to person, getting distorted and messed up by the time it reaches the end. That game is the perfect example of why in a large team, effective communication becomes paramount to success. Whatever tool you’re using, whether it be email or a messaging platform like MS Teams, make sure you are communicating in a way that makes the passing of information seamless. Don’t overdo it, just make sure the right information is getting to the right people. Remember, clear and consistent communication fosters trust and minimizes misunderstandings.


4. Define Clear Goals and Expectations

Clear goals and expectations provide the roadmap for success.  By ensuring that your team members understand their individual and team objectives, you help them realize their place in moving the organization forward. I mentioned it earlier, but when you are in a large team it’s easy to feel unimportant and like just another number. When you help show how their goals will help shape the company’s future, employees naturally become more engaged. This tip works for all levels of leadership, but setting expectations not only gives a baseline for what your employees need to accomplish, but it gives direction to those that want to go above and beyond.


5. Listen to Feedback

As your team gets bigger you get further away from the ground-level employees. Today’s business landscape can change rapidly, and the longer your team is live, the more chance you’re giving the market to shift. Don’t get left behind, listen to the managers you put in place! Welcome dissenting opinions and feedback, in fact, encourage people to give you different opinions. If somebody comes to you with a good idea or a problem that needs to be fixed, don’t let your ego get in the way. Take their suggestion and seriously consider it before moving on to the next steps, whether it be to implement their comment or disregard it. Your team is your greatest asset, use them to their full potential.


6. Recognize and Reward Achievements

When you work on a large team it can be easy to feel like just a cog in a wheel. We’ve already established that there’s no way to have an in-depth check-in with every member of your team, however, by being intentional about recognizing the achievements of individuals or groups within your team, you not only help those employees to feel seen but provide motivation for other workers to go above and beyond. Celebrating wins also pays off for the morale of the team itself. Momentum is a real thing in the business world, and by showing the wins of other team members, it can encourage individuals they can do the same.

Lisa Nelson, Vice President, Operations
My name is Lisa Nelson and I am a Vice President at Salelytics. I’ve been with our organization for over 20 years. Starting off as a sales associate, I quickly realized that I was looking at a long-term career. The family/life balance, people-centric culture, and multi-faceted verticals continued to appeal to me. Today I’m responsible for our B2B division, where I focus on establishing strategic working relationships with our client partners while delivering quality service and a healthy ROI.

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