Importance of Teamwork at Your Workplace
I am a staunch believer in John Donne’s very fitting phrase ‘No man is an island’ from one of his works in the late 16th Century. I believe that having a team that works towards a common goal with a shared vision can become an absolute advantage for that department, and in turn for that organization. If you're in charge of a team, there are many ways you can promote better teamwork amongst the team members. Starting to believe in the capabilities of every team member and encouraging their inputs in the team meetings are good places to start when you’re trying to boost team productivity.
Teamwork benefits: While working as a team, you can get your projects done on piecemeal basis, made possible by the virtuous principle of ‘segregation of duties’, thereby increasing the total productivity and efficiency in terms of resources and time.
Tell them their importance: The key to a successful teamwork is to peg the effectiveness of the outcome with the degree of success of the individual and the team efforts as whole. An effective methodology to this is to set realistic goals and objectives, define clear KPI’s, and give full visibility to the team members around their performance as mapped and evaluated against the KPIs set. In addition, the team leader must strive to ensure that his team members feel as responsible and enthusiastic towards achieving the shared vision and short- to medium-term goals as he and the upper management does.
Encourage their ideas & suggestions: This not only helps in instilling a sense of purpose in everyone, but also in laying foundations for innovation and improvisation. The team leader should encourage the team members to think outside the box while mentoring and nurturing their problem-solving skills, instead of solving the problems for them.
Team-building sessions: Organizing team meetings and activities is a necessity and not an option if you want to build cohesiveness and a tight fit among your team members. Team building sessions are the Higgs-Bosons to a team’s sub-atomic constitution. Team activities help members adjust to other members’ temperaments in a very natural, unstructured manner that is less likely to happen in a formal and official setting. Managers following this approach see the resultant friendship amongst the team members as not an inconvenience or an obstruction, but rather as an asset to capitalize upon.
Give them ownership: If you're leading the project, it's always a great idea to delegate. This not only means less work for you, but also shows that you believe in the capabilities of your team enough to trust them with some key responsibilities. It is a great confidence booster, and more often than not, you actually stumble upon team members who have great leadership qualities or a unique, highly effective method of working which if replicated, can boost the productivity of the team by a great deal.
Rewards and recognition: Everyone has an innate desire to be recognized for their hard work. By arranging for and investing in R&R sessions, you can single out those members who have been instrumental in the success of your team and can celebrate their hard work with them by presenting certificates and awards. R&R sessions are also indirect motivators for those not receiving the awards as they would want to come on the top the next time and will put in their best.
Disclaimer: The views expressed here are solely those of the author in his private capacity and do not in any way represent the views of Systems Limited, or any other entity related to Systems Limited.