How to Work Effectively in Teams
Teamwork is an essential part in the success of an organisation, and teamwork skills are important for an individual to have regardless of his/her profession. Building a good working relationship with your colleagues, subordinates, management, and coworkers in general can help in the success of completing both small tasks and big projects. It also helps with creating a healthy work environment where everyone feels included.
Being a teamplayer may not be something that comes naturally to everyone. Some individuals may need to learn a few techniques to sharpen this skill. Here are some techniques on how to effectively work in a team:
May it be about a project that will be under the responsibility of the team or a possibly brewing conflict, it is important to communicate with your coworkers properly and in a professional manner. Communication can be the main weapon you can have when it comes to showing that you have good teamwork skills.
When you communicate, you do not only get to share what is in your head, you also get to hear what thoughts and ideas your teammates have. Collaboration can then come into play better and more naturally.
Communication during the early stage of a possible misunderstanding can also be beneficial for you, the other party, and everyone else in the team. Communicating early is like “nipping it in the bud”. Before things progress, go south, and become even a bigger conflict, discussing the situation should already happen.
Each member of the team must understand the specific roles that they play and each member of the team should have the responsibility to deliver accordingly. Overstepping another person’s tasks and not fulfilling what is expected of you to do are both not going to be helpful in practicing how to be a good team player and potentially may create unwanted hostility within you and your coworkers.
Showing teamwork involves realising that any output that you do not submit on or before its deadline may have a direct negative effect on someone else’s work.
There will always be dropped balls in every task or project. Mistakes should be evaluated and learned from, and should not be the catalyst for any kind of misunderstanding. One good way to handle mistakes made is to take accountability for it.
Taking accountability for a mistake that you had made, understanding the reason why it happened and formulating a plan in order for it to not happen again will help not only build a good reputation within the team, it will also encourage other teammates to do the same thing. When making mistakes and learning from it is normalised within a team, more people will see dropped balls as an opportunity to grow instead of something that will push them to start pointing fingers.
You and your teammates are all human beings after all. May it be for a personal or work-related reason, it could be greatly appreciated if you show empathy and compassion towards your co-worker. Through actions like this, members of the team will feel seen and heard. This also may help develop a sense of belongingness for each member of the team.
Asking simple questions like, “Do you want someone to listen” or asking someone to go outside to get some fresh air can be helpful and such actions are often not forgotten – especially by the person who needed to hear it. If teamwork goes beyond work-related matters, and in a careful way stretches to personal problems, then it may help create a stronger sense of oneness from each member of the team.
Lend a hand
When things get challenging, and tasks start pouring, it will not be a terrible idea to ask if other members of the team are doing well. If you are confident that you can easily finish – without affecting your own responsibilities – certain tasks that a co-worker has on his/her plate, then it will show tremendous teamwork skills if you try and help out.
This can not only be a good example of being a teamplayer, members of the team may try and emulate such behaviour as well, creating a healthy relationship between everyone in the team.
Give honest feedback
Develop the habit of providing honest feedback, but always in a tactful manner. When providing feedback, everyone has to remember and take into factor the effort put into a certain task and the dedication to complete it. While not all tasks are going to be exemplary, this does not give any member of the team the freedom to feedback in a rude, condescending manner.
When members of the team are provided feedback on areas they can improve on, and the feedback was delivered in a manner that shows consideration and tactfulness, it can be taken more positively.
If you are not playing a supervisory role, but were asked to provide feedback on someone else’s work, you have to be even more aware of the words you use and the manner you deliver your message. You may not mean anything negative, but the wrong choice of words and tone may be interpreted differently.
Mimic good habits
You should not only strive to copy the best practices that your coworkers have, you should also emulate good teamwork skills that they showcase. What better way to practice and sharpen your teamplayer skills but by applying what has already proven effective. Teamwork tactics that are already being practiced may also be the kind of teamwork techniques that are effective within the team. By just copying them, you can be more confident that you will not be making mistakes on how to approach certain matters.
Mirroring someone’s good habits can never backfire, and can only potentially ignite a positive habit of imitating positive patterns.
There are so many other ways to learn and sharpen your teamwork skills. Looking for your dream job or maybe a new team to grow with? Visit us now at www.jobspivot.com.sg and find your dream job!