Space HR 'Feedback 500' (Jan'22) - Topic: High Performing Teams

Space HR 'Feedback 500' (Jan'22) - Topic: High Performing Teams

Publish Date: 2022-01-17

Author: Victoria Bond

Each month, we ask our panel of business and HR leaders about the hottest topics impacting employee engagement in UK businesses.

In January we asked about the link between employee engagement and high-performing teams.

Here’s what our leaders told us....

(To find out more about how we conduct the survey, or to get involved read to the end of the article)


High employee engagement and high-performing teams go hand in hand. 

Almost all of our panel said that they strongly agreed that there was a link between high-performing teams and employee engagement. 

We asked our panel to share their views on a scale - with 1 indicating that they didn’t see a link and 10 indicating that they saw a strong link. 

Our average score from our panel here was 9.2 - indicating that our panel were really clear that high employee engagement and high performing teams are closely linked. 



Focus on individual performance or team performance?  The jury is still out. 

We wanted to understand some of the important elements of creating a high-performing team. 

We started off with a tough question (our panel told us it was tough in their comments!) - asking if they prefer to focus on individual performance, or the performance of the team as a whole when developing a high-performing team. 

We ended up with a split panel on this question. 51% of the panel said they’d focus on individuals and 49% said they’d focus on the whole team. 


Here’s some of the comments we captured here: 

I generally find though that if you focus on building personally fulfilled, self aware, emotionally intelligent, psychologically safe individuals - then *they* will work together to lift team performance.”

Focusing on individual performance in reference to how it affects the whole team is important. Focusing on the team performance without individual focus can lead to mediocre results”

“When leading a team is a multifaceted issue. How one engages with the individual AND the team AND the dynamic that exists. Employee engagement is key to that continued development particularly in challenging times.” 




Connection & personal fulfillment top the list for ways to engage a high-performing team 

We asked our panel which factors they thought had the highest impact when it came to the engagement of high performing teams: 

  • 32% said connection & the communication of goals, vision, mission and values was the most important factor
  • 32% said personal fulfillment such as reward, work-life balance and career development 
  • 25% said leadership 
  • 6% said wellbeing was the most important factor 
  • 5% chose “other”  (many in the comments said that they wished there was a “all of the above” option!)


I think is a combination of all the options” 

“Communication has to be at the core of everything.”

“Getting an inspiring and motivational leader will help all other aspects of employee engagement such as wellbeing, personal fulfillment and communication. An inspirational leader will cover all of these as a part of their normal role”



Employee engagement will become more key for creating high-performing teams in remote workplaces

The majority of our leaders felt employee engagement will become more key in creating high performing team as the move to remote workplaces continues. 

We asked the panel: on a scale of 1 (low) to 10 (high) to what extent to do you agree with the statement:  "increased remote working makes employee engagement more important to achieving high performance".

Our average score here was 8.0 - indicating that over 75% of the panel agreed or strongly agreed with the statement. However, there were around 25% of the panel that felt strongly that this statement wasn’t true. 


“I think this is very individual so would find it difficult to score. I agree working from home aids work life balance and well-being in general but not everyone has sn adequate space in which to work, logistically or psychologically.”

“I think engaging people is harder remotely- it isn’t impossible but it takes more effort - you have to think it through more. A simple Teams meeting with the Team once a week, once a day doesn’t do it

“Sharing vision as a leader is difficult and remote employees will certainly get a watered down version of it - having face to face time focused on leadership and rally cries is important.”




So what are the key takeaways?

From our research some key themes emerged;

  1. High employee engagement is key to a high performing team - they are closely linked
  2. There is no “best practice” when it comes to the best place to focus when developing a high performing team; individuals or the team as a whole - it’s likely to be a great blend of both 
  3. Two employee engagement factors came out top for developing high performing teams; connection and setting the vision for the future…
  4. And personal fulfilment - although the secret recipe is likely to be a blend of all elements of employee engagement 
  5. As we move into hybrid / remote working practices and the challenges that brings to organisations, it’s likely to become harder to develop high performing teams
  6. The need to focus on employee engagement for developing high performing teams and high performing organisations is as relevant as ever. As the workplace continues to change and adapt, this key area of focus is unlikely to change in its importance and results. 


Some of the other insight experience and comments our leaders shared on this topics can be seen below;





Be part of something special....

The Space HR 'Feedback 500' is a piece of monthly research we conduct to understand more about the topics affecting employee engagement. Each month we send our leadership community 5 short topical questions via WhatsApp. All responses are captured anonymously. We have leaders from a wide range of sectors including: HR consultants, recruitment, retail, automotive, creative arts, construction, technology, utilities, e-commerce, digital, marketing, legal, health, public sector and education.

To become part of our 'Feedback 500' sign up here:


Find out more about Space HR at

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