The basics for building a successful team stem from where the group is coming from and where the group needs to go.
Consider the differing backgrounds and skills that your staff come to you with. Some may have veteran status when it comes to working with children while others may be new and excited to learn all they can. Some staff will come to your center needing more training while others will be able to mentor and guide their colleagues. As a director it is your job to harness the skills and talents of your staff to build up their strengths in order to meet the collective goals of your center.
Center goals will determine the path in which you decide to take when building your team. Having realistic and measurable goals will give you opportunities to check in with staff and families to ensure that things are heading in the right direction. Your center goals should relate to your mission or vision statement and be supported by all staff. This creates a collective commitment for moving toward the determined goals.
Other things to consider are your community needs and how your staff members can support these needs. Being that your families and staff will be coming from the local community in most cases it is important to be aware of the community culture that is specific to your area when working with your team. For example, rural communities will have different needs from childcare providers than urban communities. Likewise, staff with experience in one community will likely bring their prior knowledge and skills as part of their bag of tools. These prior skills need to be taken into consideration when welcoming a new staff member. Each person has a lot to offer!
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