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What Everyone Should Know About Teamwork

A working group's transformation

Whenever a working group has as goal to become a real team, difficulties are to be expected. Going from working individually to working together, as a team, requires great skills of leadership as well as determination and patience from every single member of the team.

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What Everyone Should Know About Teamwork

What Everyone Should Know About Teamwork

https://www.forbes.com/sites/luisromero/2016/01/20/what-everyone-should-know-about-teamwork/

forbes.com

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Key Ideas

The challenge of the teamwork

Teamwork is perceived as being extremely efficient in our everyday working structure, as it develops social skills in addition to enabling a faster achievement of goals.

However, each and every person who is part of the team has to give his or her best in order for the team itself to function successfully.

The drawback of working groups

The so-called 'working groups' tend to be successful as long as the issue that needs to be solved has a low level of complexity. However, for goals that are more challenging, they seldom prove to be useful.

A working group's transformation

Whenever a working group has as goal to become a real team, difficulties are to be expected. Going from working individually to working together, as a team, requires great skills of leadership as well as determination and patience from every single member of the team.

On the way to a 'real team'

The moment the members of a team have reached a certain level of communication and agreement related to the team's general goals, it becomes easier to make the transition from the individual work to the collective one. 

Moreover, the team is now more likely to have greater success, as higher performance is often easier to achieve when cooperating with others.

True teamwork

True teamwork is defined by common goals, work methods and a shared vision. Furthermore, the mutual support makes the goals more attainable overall.

Teams at their best

Teams reach their highest performance level whenever each individual, as a part of them, learns how to develop and specialize in a certain field, providing to his or her team the means to further collective improvement.

SIMILAR ARTICLES & IDEAS:

Group Development Theory

Dr. Bruce Tuckman, a psychology professor, synthesized team development into four basic stages: Forming, Storming, Norming, and Performing.

Forming

This stage of teamwork is all about first meetings and first impressions.

What everyone needs most is a clear understanding of their part in the journey and a setup for building emotional connections. Setting goals together puts their skills and interests into the open.

Storming

Most teams go through the storming stage in some form or another because discord is inevitable. The key value to emphasize in the team is positive intent. 

A little conflict is needed to bring upfront weak spots in projects and to bring new valid arguments to the table. But constant storming leads to the destruction of productivity, projects, and ultimately, the team itself.

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Meta-Skills

A meta-skill is a high order skill that allows you to engage with functional expertise more effectively

It magnifies and activates other skills and is a catalyst for learning an...

Skills And Meta-Skills

Skills are temporary; meta-skills are permanent.

Learning a second language gives you a skill, a learned ability. A meta-skill, on the other hand, is your ability to learn new languages. Developing that meta-skill, makes it easier to learn a third or a fourth tongue.

Alvin Toffler
Alvin Toffler

“The illiterate of the 21st century will not be those who cannot read and write, but those who cannot learn, unlearn, and relearn."

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The importance of managing expectations

According to Qualtrics, employees do not engage properly when they are unsure of their company’s goals.

When your team ...

Communicate clearly and frequently

Communication is essential and comes first when setting expectations with your team.

Have a plan in place from the start to ensure your team understands what you are expecting from them.

For example, should they report every task they complete? Is there a set amount of time in which they should be able to reply to emails?

Roles and responsibilities documents

Your team will work as a unit if every member is aware of their own responsibilities and the importance of their work in the organization.

This can be accomplished by creating a document that describes their role in the company in detail.

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Organizational change management (OCM)

It refers to any event or program an enterprise undertakes that causes major disruption to daily operations.

Organizational change management ensures that the new processes resulting f...

Benefits of change management

Change management reduces the risk that a new system or other change will be rejected by the enterprise.

By itself, it does not reduce costs or increase sales. Instead, it increases the teamwork required for the enterprise accept the change and operate more efficiently.

Requirements for change management success
  • The right executive sponsor: responsible for developing the case for change and obtaining the necessary OCM resources.
  • Cultural willingness to adapt and change:  all organizations resist change to some degree.
  • Individual willingness to change: individuals must be willing to examine new information and adopt new behaviors and approaches.
  • Rewards and consequences: major changes need to be reinforced by rewards and consequences.

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The first rule of team building

To lead a team effectively, you must first establish your leadership with each team member. 

Most effective team leaders build their relationships of trust and loyalty, rather tha...

Steps for building effective teams
  • Consider each employee's ideas as valuable.
  • Be clear when communicating. 
  • Encourage trust and cooperation among employees on your team. 
  • Encourage team members to share information, to listen and to brainstorm.
  • Let the team work on creative solutions together.
  • Set ground rules for the team. 
  • Establish the parameters of consensus-building sessions.
Conflict in virtual teams

...is more likely to escalate because:

  • Colleagues are more likely to take disagreements personally when they don't have the context, nuance or even the facial expressi...
Managing conflict in virtual teams
  • Assign tasks that demand interdependence among team members to complete, so that they rely on each other to succeed.
  • Set clear goals. Formalizing the team’s vision, roles, norms, work processes, and strategies can help keep a team on track.
  • Awarding teamwork is crucial to encourage them to work together and discourage an individual from going off the rails.
  • Be patient. Teams often overcome problems of virtuality over time.
“Be A Strong Writer”
“Be A Strong Writer”

This is one of the first pieces of advice people give to those seeking remote work.

When you work remotely, a few misplaced words can become an occupational hazard. Every w...

Accessible Language
  • Use of caps lock, emojis, italics and tildes (~) to make your language flowery, fun and human is a great idea for remote working. You can also use memes and gif images, provided they are not offensive to anyone.
  • Robot speak is not a good way to freely collaborate with your remote peers. Use simple words, and keep it on the casual side, skipping the inaccessible and stilted language. You can also opt for contractions like writing isn’t instead of is not.
Be Clear And Concise
  • Do not obscure your message by words that are there to decorate the sentence and make it sound wordy while camouflaging what you mean.
  • Make good use of qualifiers ("I think, In my opinion") while not coming across as a perpetually confused person. Don’t use qualifiers while making a strong point.
  • While writing documentation, it is prudent to avoid jargon and acronyms.
  • Use complete words and sentences. Shortcuts and acronyms block any actual communication, acting as roadblocks. On the same lines, avoid cliches, idioms and any idiotic sounding phrase that catches the ear well but doesn’t really do any good to anyone.
  • Remote working is often on a global scale, and certain expressions will not be understood by some participants, or worse, will be misunderstood.
  • Your words and tone should be tailored according to your audience. The words are different when you are writing to a client, and when you are in a small group chat with your peers. More people in chat also means adopting a polished, professional tone.

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4 kinds of behavior
4 kinds of behavior

... account for 89 percent of leadership effectiveness:

  • Solving problems effectively;
  • Operating with a strong results orientation;
  • Seeking different perspectives;
Effective problem solving

Problem-solving - when information is gathered, analyzed, and considered. 

Difficult to get right, yet this process is a key input into decision making, for both major issues and daily ones.

Results orientation
Leadership is about not only developing and communicating a vision and setting objectives but also following through to achieve results. 

Leaders with a strong results orientation tend to emphasize the importance of efficiency and productivity and to prioritize the highest-value work.

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Leaderships skills related to EQ
  • Working to inspire and motivate those around;
  • Focus on collaboration between team members, which creates synergy and a better experience for employees;
  • “Walking the talk,...
Remote-first Mindset

Accept that you have to put in place remote work systems, even if more than half of your employees ultimately revert to office-based work.

  • If done right, a remote-first infrastructu...
Build a socially-connected culture

Intentionally design for the same interactions that would otherwise happen if people were in the office.

  • Culture is what naturally happens when a group of people gets together for any period.
  • A great culture happens with intentional design and influence. It's the reason you should make your company's mission, vision, values, operating principles, standards, and agreements visible. 
  • Culture is experienced through emotions, including how your employees feel about the company, you, other leaders, and peers. That feeling is developed through human interaction at the water cooler, kitchen, or hallway conversations.
Your leadership presence

Your people need to feel your presence as a leader as they will have fewer opportunities to see you face to face when they work remotely.

  • Regularly show up in a variety of forms that can include weekly video meetings, periodic company-wide emails, or presence in public channels.
  • Err on the side of more communication rather than less.

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