Team Briefing Checklist

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A team briefing provides you with a perfect opportunity to communicate with your team and gauge their level of motivation and satisfaction. This checklist walks you through the process of preparing a team brief so that they are seen as effective and informative.

A team briefing provides you with the opportunity to engage with your team in a two-way communication process and is an essential ingredient in effective team building. A team briefing provides you with the ideal forum to tell your team members about what is happening within the organization and how it affects them. An effective team briefing raises morale within the team, builds a sense of common purpose and reinforces the credibility of the team leader.

Team Briefings are semi-formal events where the team gets together regularly to talk about team goals, successes and failures. This is an important part of building a team - the interpersonal interaction is crucial. Remember, a team briefing is not meant to replace normal day-today communications between you and your team, these should continue as normal.

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Even though team briefings take up valuable time, when they are properly organized they enable you to accomplish several things that are difficult to achieve in any other way. Firstly, they create a culture of open communication and prevent rumors from gaining credibility. This is something that can easily happen if there is a lack of communication and information from senior management. Secondly, they can enhance awareness of the organizations current objectives and encourage involvement by helping to develop a shared sense of mission, vision and collective aims. Finally, they provide a means for questions and suggestions to be fed back upward to line management and senior management.

Team briefings are most effective in groups of five to twenty people; if the team is any larger then it is a good idea to split it up across functional lines. They should also be regular scheduled events that are linked to times when management information is given out (for example, quarterly results). This avoids calling team briefings only when there is a problem to deal with, something that will encourage people to view the whole process in a negative way and be reluctant to contribute to what should be a two-way communication process.

You will need to communicate the information in a way that shows how it affects your team so that they understand its importance. In addition, you should try to put the information across in a positive way whilst using your discretion to decide which aspects are the most important to your team.

Make sure that team members feel confident about asking questions and if you can't answer them, make a note and take it up with someone who can. Where you need to seek further information or advice to answer a question or concern make sure that you inform those at the briefing when you will get back to them. This feedback should take place as quickly as possible. If the timeframe forces a response to be longer than a week communicate the progress you have made in obtaining an answer.

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