Here are a few excerpts on creating confidence within your team or your ogranization from Mark Shead at www.Leadership501.com. There is no doubt that creating confidence in an individual or in a team is an art and something that takes time. In fact, it should be given thought and discussion at each staff meeting just as when you talk about offense, defense or recruiting. Your dialogue with a player or your team and aid or hurt this process. This is not to say that you can be critical when needed — just that there is a proper way to be critical and that follow up is just as important to keep or develop confidence.
You can read the entire article on this subject at: http://www.leadership501.com/creating-confidence/18/.
As a leader, you need to cultivate your team’s confidence. Your team should have confidence in themselves as well as confidence in your leadership skills. The best way to create confidence is through a series of victories. In general, people will judge the probability of future success based on past performance. As you work with your team you will build a history. If you maintain a good track record of success, you will create a sense of optimism that future, proposed projects will also be successful. If you have a record of failure, your team will probably view any new projects as having a high chance of failing.
To be effective, you need a team that is very confident in their abilities to achieve success and in your ability to choose projects that will be successful. If an individual doesn’t feel like what they are working on is going to be successful, it is very unlikely that they will invest themselves entirely in the project. Sometimes, they will even start trying to plan ahead in order to have a good excuse for the project’s demise. At times, this means ignoring obvious obstacles that will provide an excuse for their failure.
When an individual believes a project will be successful, they are able to put themselves behind it 100%. Instead of looking for obstacles that can function as excuses in the future, they are proactive in eliminating obstacles that would cause a failure of the project. A team full of people looking for solutions will have a much higher success rate than a team of people looking for things to use as excuses later on.
It is the job of the leader to select projects that will contribute to an overall sense of success within his team. By starting with projects that the entire team believes will be successful, a leader is able to raise the level of confidence for the next project. Over time, the confidence of a team can be built to a point that it can easily complete a project that would have been a failure previously. A series of projects can be completed easily and successfully when they are arranged in order to build confidence, while the same projects can all be complete failures when done in a different order.
Dealing with failure is one of the key skills a leader needs to develop. Failure does not have to be a big deal, but most people’s natural tendencies are the opposite of what needs to happen in order to turn a failure into a learning experience and not a confidence breaker.
A high level of confidence isn’t something that just happens naturally. It is something that develops over time. With a little care and planning, your team can grow in confidence. This leads to a momentum of success that will carry them over the inevitable rough places and occasional failures.