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Are you fostering a toxic team dynamic?

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Ben Mossman, Director – External Practice Development

Great Practice Solutions

Regardless of your team’s structure – a formal team (consisting two or more producing advisors), an advisor with staffed employees, or both – it is imperative to monitor and evaluate your team’s dynamic. Team dynamic is the effect that each team member has on the overall group. It can stem from team member performance, attitude and/or ability to contribute.

Data shows that effective teams drive revenue growth at a faster rate and experience healthier margins than solo practitioners. That’s not to say that simply forming a team will lead to more revenue growth. An effective team drives this progress through synergy, organization and leadership, contributing to the overall dynamic.

Inversely, a toxic team dynamic can result in diminished production, high staff turnover, tension between team members and poor client service, among other things.
The top four factors that lead to a toxic team dynamic are:

  1. Misaligned positions

Do you have team members in the right roles, doing what they do best and what they enjoy? Do your employees know what role they serve, why their work matters and how their contribution impacts the whole?

  1. Disconnection from team objectives

Can your team clearly articulate the mission/vision for the business? Do they know the strategic plan? Has their input been solicited and do they understand their part in moving the business forward?

  1. Deaf ears

Do you have an open and honest work environment that allows for feedback and honest evaluation? Although this can be a slippery slope, if members of your team don’t feel that their voice is heard, you may see poor performance, apathy and excessive turnover.

  1. Poor leadership

Leaders lead by example and hire the right people to do the right job. Does your team view you as a leader or a boss? Are they following instructions because they believe in the objective or out of fear for their employment? 

It is common for advisors to become so entrenched in the practice of financial advising that the business side suffers. Teaming can be a practical and resourceful solution if a team structure aligns with your objectives and nurtures a positive dynamic.

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