After years of consulting and working with hundreds of teams….I am 100% certain that the only way to have an amazing Activity/Life Enrichment Program is to design an amazing team!
What is a team?
I like this definition the most:
A group of people with different skills and different tasks, who work together on a common project, service, or goal, with a meshing of function and mutual support.
Bam! That’s exactly what I’m talking about. Thanks Cambridge University Press!
How do you design an amazing team?
Unfortunately, we can’t use a magic wand. This is hard and dirty work! Being a Leader (not a Manager), designing an amazing team, is not for wimps! As an Activity Leader (Life Enrichment Coordinator) you must have the courage to not only design this team, but also to LEAD this team….and maintain this team!
This takes Courage and Heart.
Three “MUST DO’s” to design an amazing team:
- Assess thy Program.
The first piece of designing any team is assessing what your Program will need. Assess your client population. What are the diagnosis, culture, language, socio-economic background, Physical, Social, Emotional, and Social Functioning, etc. Once you determine who you’re programming for, you know who would be the best fit to work with this population.
Next determine how many staff you will need to implement this Program. You might think this is a foreign concept, that this is out of your control….I’m here to tell you it’s not! The days of cookie-cutter programs are GONE. If you are currently working in a Program that is understaffed it’s your right (and actually your DUTY) to justify the need more staff. Not one Administrator will wake up one day and say, “Hey, I think I want to give the Life Enrichment Department more staff!” This is stuff of dreams (and frankly, delusions).
Not sure how to make this happen?
Use a consultant, mentor or someone in your circle that has accomplished this goal and write a proposal to justify the staff you need. Always ask for more than you need. MOST IMPORTANTLY, YOU MUST make it crystal clear how this will positively impact your Program. Your proposal should outline the specific clients that will be served with this additional staff, the innovative activities that will be added, and more. You get the idea. Quality staff, sufficient number of staff means Client-Centered care.
- Assess thy potential team members.
Now that you’ve assessed your Program you should have a clear idea on who you want on this team. For starters, are these individuals educated and trained to do the work? If not, they should be! Not all Activity Leader Classes are the same, so set a standard across the board. Your entire team should be educated by the same teaching body! The Activity Leader Training & Development Seminar: A Therapeutic Paradigm here at Healthy Solutions is a great place to start!! You want your team to speak the same language! Be sure that as the Leader of the team your Administrator understands and supports the need for all staff to be properly educated and trained.
Now consider the person you’d like on your team. What other education and training would you want them to have? Would you like them to speak a certain language? What are the personality and character traits that would best suit the team: energetic and enthusiastic, good problem solver, artsy, athletic…or a little of each! It’s important that you have a clear idea of that person and to set the intention to get them.
- Assess thy teams skills and strengths.
Assess each member’s skills and strengths. Share those strengths openly with the team (great for team building, trust building, and professional investment). Marcus Buckingham’s Now Discover your Strengths is a great place for you to start assessing your teams strengths, including your own.
Once you’ve assessed strengths and skills plug each member into your Program. This is a MUST DO! You will never have a truly motivated and inspired team if they’re not plugged into their own unique skills and strengths. This is where we miss the boat. This is the secret sauce!!
This is where you begin. This is what you aim for. This how you design a team of your dreams!
Already walked in to a ready-made team when you took the job? Think this can’t work for you if you haven’t been a part of selecting of your team? Not the end of the world. You still must work this same process.
Process: A series of actions or steps taken in order to achieve a particular end.
In this case, the end is designing the team of your dreams!
Do the work, and begin to change the way you think about your team!
Be Inspired & Inspire Others,
Rebecca Birotte @ Healthy Solutions
Now I want to hear from you! In the comments below name one thing that is holding you back from designing the Team of your Dreams?