Building high Performance TeamsI received a call the other day from an employee who worked for me many years ago. He called because he was now put in charge of a new team and wanted to ask me for my training process that I used when he worked for me. I said I would be glad to share it with him and I thought it would be useful for others as well. Here is what I taught this manager about building high performance teams and how to hold them accountable.

Setting expectations

If you are very clear on what you expect from your employees, clear on why it is important and then how you expect them to carry out their job, you have set the stage for success. Clarity cuts out misinterpretation and allows for the next step, training to be more effective.


I have written a few articles on my 8-step training process and if you follow that process I feel you will be building high performance teams that will be fully ready to execute their jobs effectively. Once they begin to perform, then the next step, follow up is the key to long-term performance.

Follow up.

Once you have the team performing it is up to you to set a schedule to follow up and critique performance. There is no right or wrong time frame. That depends on how new they are to the task, which would mean more frequent follow up to more seasoned employees where it may be monthly or quarterly. They key is there is never a time when follow up does not happen.

You get the desired results

If you see the team performing as you desire then you need to reinforce the behavior that got these results. Make sure they understand what they DID to get these results so they can repeat the behavior. Remember what they DID, not the results.

They do NOT get the results

First time this happens, as a trainer I say, Shame on me. I must have failed to communicate clearly or was not effective following the 8-Step process. So I retrain the person by first asking them what they remember from their training on how to perform the task. This allows me to laser focus my retraining in on what matters, versus just going over the whole job again.

Second time they do NOT get results

Now this time I will most likely retrain if I see the effort. Maybe it is just one more nudge and everything works out but the employee is now on my radar as someone who may not be a fit

Third Time they do NOT get results

Now we have finished with retraining and we are on the road to lack of effort on their part. This is where the documentation of conversations happens. In this meeting you need to outline what was occurring and how they are not meeting expectations. You also need to set out what is expected as well as the next level of escalation if they fail.

Time to Say Goodbye

Lastly you have to be willing to cut people from your team if they are not performing. I have seen mistakes where “likeability” or past successes factor into the decision. You have to take emotion out of this. If you are at this point in the journey, they understand what is expected and are just failing to deliver. If you do not cut them, you are impacting the rest of the team in a negative manner and everyone else will now bring their performance level down to an average level.


I wish this manager great success. As I said to him, and I say to you if I can be of service, reach out. I am always willing to lend a hand.


Glenn Pasch is the current CEO of PCG Digital Marketing as well as a writer, National Speaker  and Management Trainer.

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