Productive group working is the desire of every employer who appreciates the positive effect of good teamwork on business. Meanwhile, workers want to be in a team where they feel respected and valued.
Getting it right can lead to a congenial atmosphere where participants spark off each other, successes are forged and output increases. But getting it wrong will lead to frustration, inefficiency and time-wasting.
So, what is the secret of effective teams? In an effort to bring you the best tips, we looked at data from 20,000 Good&Co users, as well as 380 team leaders.
Findings showed that five vital qualities are essential for successful team-building: respect, efficiency, adaptability, communication and teamwork. Below we explain the perfect recipe for working well together.
Respect is the bedrock of a team. It means treating each other with consideration, valuing everybody’s contributions, showing consideration to other members, and refraining from negative behaviour.
Also called ‘psychological safety’, respect provides an environment where people feel comfortable enough to take risks without being criticised or judged.
Everybody must adhere to the same principles, or the team will be undermined.
With different members of a group bringing different attributes to the table, many teams are made up of diverse skill sets. The whole group can therefore share knowledge and deal with problems in a clean and lean way.
With speed and economy as their modus operandi, teams with members who have diverse skills will be able to cut to the chase and deal swiftly with any obstacles along the way.
The flexibility to cope with unforeseen circumstances without imploding is a vital asset for teams. If adjusting to unexpected conditions is not handled well, this can adversely impact the integrity of the team.
And without the quality of adaptability, group members become stuck and remain static in their outlook. Thinking on one’s feet and staying flexible when thrown in at the deep end is therefore essential.
Good communication underpins the other desirable elements. It is vital for issuing instructions and holding key conversations where everyone needs to understand their tasks or jobs. It is also important as a basic rule of courtesy, and for reaching out to others.
If communication doesn’t work, misunderstandings and tensions can arise in the team, and you may be unpleasantly surprised by something you were not expecting. Having effective and to-the-point conversations is therefore a vital part of connecting successfully.
People making a cooperative effort get results beyond what they could achieve as individuals. The success of the team as a whole therefore becomes more important than single contributions – namely, the group is more than the sum of its parts.
When teams share values of respect, productivity, creativity and excellent communication, the sky is the limit. The effect can be likened to alchemy, with individual elements that are in themselves ordinary but that turn into pure gold through being mixed together.
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