Having clarity on what’s expected from a leader can help you lead your team with success.
This is where the team leadership model can help.
In this blog post, I’ll dive into the concept of team leadership model and tell you how it can help you become a more effective team leader.
What is a Team Leadership Model?
A team leadership model is a framework that provides team leaders with a roadmap to diagnose and solve team problems.
It is a systematic approach that helps team leaders identify the cause of team issues and take corrective action to improve team performance.
And this will help you address the eight elements of successful teams as categorised in When Teams Work Best: 6,000 Team Members and Leaders Tell What It Takes to Succeed.
- A clear and inspiring goal
- A structure that’s focused on results
- Competent and diverse team members
- Unified commitment and teamwork
- A collaborative environment
- High standards for excellence
- Principled leadership
- Adequate external support
So let me tell you more about one of the most well-known team leadership models.
It’s called the Hill’s Team Leadership Model. It’s named after its original author: Susan Kogler Hill.
This model provides team leaders with a mental map to help them diagnose and solve team problems. The in Hill’s Team Leadership Model is based on four steps :
- Determine if the situation requires action or monitoring
- Identify whether the problem is related to internal or external leadership
- Choose the appropriate function intervention: task, relational, or environmental
- Execute the chosen intervention to achieve high performance through development and maintenance functions
Let’s dig in.
The Four Layers of Hill’s Team Leadership Model
1. Determine if the situation requires action or monitoring
Step 1 is about identifying the urgency of what’s happening. It’s about seeking some context and get the information you need decide on the appropriate response.
For example, if a team member is consistently underperforming, the team leader needs to determine whether the situation requires immediate action or monitoring. If the team leader decides that the situation requires immediate action, they need to move on to the next layer of the model.
2. Identify whether the problem is related to internal or external leadership
Step 2 is to identify the category of the issue. Is it at an Internal or External leadership level?
The question is to whether it’s directly linked to you and the team, or whether it’s coming from outside the team.
3. Choose the appropriate function intervention (task, relational, or environmental)
Step 3 is to identify the category of the issue. Does it require a Task, a Relational, or an Environmental intervention?
Hill’s Team Leadership Model offers three function interventions: task, relational, and environmental.
- Task interventions are related to the work itself and focus on clarifying goals, restructuring plans, and training team members.
- Relational interventions are related to team dynamics and focus on coaching team members, managing conflict, and building commitment.
- Environmental interventions are related to the external factors that impact the team’s performance and focus on networking, advocacy, and resource gathering.
For example, if the team leader determines that the problem is related to the task, they may need to clarify goals, restructure plans, or provide training to the team member.
4. Execute the chosen intervention to achieve high performance through development and maintenance functions
Step 4 is about executing the chosen intervention. The result should be to achieve higher performance. You then continue to develop your team and maintain the cadence of work with them.