For more than 125 years the team huddle has been a common denominator for football teams across the nation. In the 1890s, this long standing tradition was invented by a quarterback at Gallaudet College, a school for the deaf. Paul Hubbard, the team’s quarterback, used the close-knit circle formation as an opportunity to ensure the opposing team was unable to see the plays he was signing to his teammates.
Over the years businesses across the world have taken the concept of a huddle and implemented it into their daily and/or weekly agendas. In the business world these “micro-meetings” can serve as a crucial touch point for high-performing business teams to strategize a new solution to a problem, hold team members accountable, and even set the tone for the day or week ahead. However, as with any meeting, a well thought out purpose and agenda must exist to maximize everyone’s time and ensure a clear vision is set for each member of your team.
Here are three simple elements to consider when strategizing how to ensure you are running the best huddle:
1) Celebrate – Did one of your team members land a big account? Streamline a complex process to ensure greater efficiency? Salvage a disgruntled customer with above and beyond service? Why not celebrate it in the huddle? In the fast-paced world of business, many successes can get missed or go unnoticed, leading to a disengaged workforce and eventual turnover. Take a quick moment to acknowledge and celebrate your teams above and beyond efforts.
2) Collaborate – There is nothing that drains a meeting faster than a “talking head.” Find ways to make the huddle interactive and engage as many team members as possible. Creating an opportunity for a quick exchange of ideas will ultimately lead to better teamwork and solutions. Keep in mind you may want to limit how much time each team member has to share or set an expectation on how much detail each team member should share on their specific topic to avoid a long, drawn out huddle.
3) Clarity – As in the football huddle, it is critical for all team members to walk away with clear goals and expectations. Communicating a vision, delegating action items, and creating deadlines will help create a sense of ownership and teamwork all at the same time. It is important to ensure each team member walks away with a clear understanding of how their role and time plays into the greater purpose.
While it may take some time to find what works best for you and your team’s huddle, taking the time to perfect it is well worth it. A well-run huddle can be one of your team’s key secrets to success against your competitors. If you have other thoughts and ideas on key components to a great huddle, please comment below! I would love to hear about ways you ensure success through huddles.
Pam Hickey Pam has been in the staffing and recruitment industry since 2011. As a Branch Manager with Celebrity Staff, she works with the Omaha and Des Moines regions. Prior to joining Celebrity Staff, Pam was in the travel industry focusing on outside sales and recruiting. Originally from Iowa, Pam graduated with a bachelor of arts in political science from Iowa State University. Outside of work she enjoys spending time with her husband and two-year-old son, yoga, cooking, and traveling.