How to Cultivate Grit in Your Team

Have you ever felt like you’ve hit a wall at work? Does it seem like your team is working hard but not making real progress? Does your day-to-day feel uninspired? Maybe you’ve noticed your team is not living up to their full potential or are losing sight of the ultimate goal. You may be wondering – what is missing?

The missing ingredient may just be grit!

What is grit?

Grit is the combination of perseverance and passion. It is the drive to work hard towards a greater goal and push forward, even through failure and frustration. Grit isn’t about talent or ambition – it’s not inherent. It’s something that is cultivated and built over time, within. It’s also something that can grow or shrink over time, so it is important to keep the fire lit!

Why? According to recent studies, grit is a huge predictor of both success and well-being. The combination of the two is imperative in the workplace. We want our teams to be productive and we need to achieve our goals. However, we must also prioritize investing in the happiness and well-being of the team, to reduce stress as well as burnout.

Gritty people tend to have greater focus, resilience, and drive to work towards completing certain goals. They also tend to be more creative, with an increased willingness to try new methods for achieving a greater goal. All in all, a grittier team is a team that will get things done, while feeling great about what’s being accomplished!

How do you cultivate Grit?

Make sure everyone is on the same page:

  • Grit is best cultivated when working towards a singular goal. A gritty team member is great, but if everyone is ‘gritty’ (or passionate and focused) on different goals, you’ll often have miscommunications, distractions, and dissociation between teammates.
    • Remember, part of possessing grit is having passion – so it’s important to ensure that everyone’s passion is focused on the main objective.

Discover your teammates’ passions:

  • Gritty people tend to work smarter, not harder. This is because they give 100% of their focus to a single (or very select few) tasks that will bring them closer to the ultimate goal. But grit is highly linked to intrinsic motivation.
    • It may be more valuable to assign your teammates to the tasks they like to do, rather than the things they might be best at. (Sometimes those things will overlap as well!)

Keep your team motivated:

  • Speaking of motivation, it’s important that your team feel motivated to build that strong perseverance towards the goal. Not all people are motivated by inspirational speeches.

Create a safe space for mistakes:

  • The key indicator of high grit is a person’s ability to keep going, amid failure, and no matter what. Gritty people don’t let failures hold them back, but learn from their mistakes instead, and let that knowledge guide new solutions. If your teammates don’t feel safe making mistakes, they’ll either spend all their time in a fruitless direction trying to make it work or spend time hiding mistakes from you and the team.
    • Gritty people often need failure, to discover and lead them to the best path to success; therefore, it’s OK to let your team make mistakes!

By applying these tips, you’ll find your team to be more focused and passionate about the ultimate goal. Furthermore, you’ll be helping to cultivate grit and satisfaction, for an all-around happier as well as more productive work environment!