An organization excels with a strong team.
No matter the what industry or position you are in, the ability to collaborate effectively is key. Employers want to hire good team players, colleagues want to work with good team players and it makes the entire work process so much easier. So test your collaboration skills with some telltale signs of a great team player.
Recently, we explored the importance of communication in the professional world. Indeed, for any collaborative project to succeed, there needs to be excellent communication among all members of the group. Efficiency depends on everyone being on the same page. Those who can share opinions, feedback and information in a way that benefits the whole group is a tremendous assent to the team.
A team is like an engine and if all the parts are working together and doing their job, it runs at its full potential. It’s when some of the parts start lagging that everything shuts down. You may have developed your own work styles and set your own pace when working on individual projects, but things are different in a group work setting. Those who can deliver quality work on-time help the whole team.
Feedback is one of the great benefits of teamwork. No matter who you are, your work could likely improve with helpful criticism. However, this can be a delicate situation. People can be offended or feel attacked if the feedback is delivered in the wrong way. A good team player is respectful and constructive with any help they give. The goal is always to improve the overall work, not pick out problems.
Regardless of your experience, your level in the company or you own estimation of your skills, acting like the smartest person in the room is in no way helpful to the team dynamic. A good team player is someone who can teacher without lecturing and help without criticizing. Some of your colleagues may need help. Steer them in the right direction instead of taking over.
A good team functions when its members accept each others views. Feel free to offer you opinions and insights into the proceedings, even if they go against the ideas of the rest of the team. Speak up in a constructive way when you feel the current direction is a mistake. You don’t want to hold up the work or be stubborn, but sometimes a new approach is exactly what was needed.
Every team member has their role to play and their work to do, but don’t think that your role as a team member ends there. Doing the bare minimum is a poor quality in a professional. When you enter into a collaborative environment, an attitude like that means letting your team down. A true team player wants to see the project to the end and if that means putting in some extra work to help out your colleagues, then you shouldn’t hesitate.
Does that sound like you or do your teamwork skills need some sharpening? What do you look for in a team member?