When you hear the word ‘teamwork,’ your mind often brings up images of all-star teams or superstar office workers who seem to never make a mistake. In reality, however, good teamwork isn’t just about the people on the playing field but the one coaching them.
As business owners, it doesn’t take long before you realize that you have a bigger responsibility beyond the usual pep talk and inspiring speeches. Promoting good teamwork is about discovering the unique, underlying factors that create productivity in the workplace.
You would be surprised at the number of counterintuitive things successful businesses do when it comes to building teamwork activities. These include:
1.Putting opposites together.
Whether it is opposing skill sets or opposing personalities, there is actually more potential when you have them working side-by-side instead of against each other. The idea of one making up for what the other lacks isn’t some naive ideal. It’s a reality for a lot of top-performing teams and companies!
That is why you need to go beyond just exercising your conflict management skills. These same skill should be used to help opposing parties from seeing how they complement each other and bring you all towards achieving your goals.
2.Seeing strengths in weaknesses.
Most people think that constructive criticism is the only approach to improving an employee’s performance. But while this type of criticism has its place, it is a bit of stretch to say it is the only way to do it.
In fact, sometimes we become too focused on what is wrong with an employee that we don’t realize that a weakness can actually be a strength. For example, a person who takes extra time perfecting a task could actually have a strong eye for detail.
Sometimes we need to shift our perspective on what we think is a flaw. Promoting teamwork means understanding each individual’s unique capabilities and how they fit in the overall effort.
3.Working to optimize work.
A good leader is never necessarily one who is good at everything being done inside the company. Most of the time it is actually someone who simply excels at being able to optimize the team’s entire workload while keeping it flexible.
This is in contrast to the to misconception that a good leader should be constantly building teamwork activities to drill them through. In reality, this often results in some members doing more work than others.
Real teamwork is about enabling the work to flow smoothly from one person to the next instead of trying to jam in everything at once.
4.Not actually shouting orders.
One mark of really effective teamwork is when you don’t even need to constantly call people to do something. When your teammates are able to execute a strategy or a tactic almost automatically, you have already succeeded. That is because they already fully understand their individual roles and know how each of their tasks synchronizes with everyone else’s.
Micro-managing each of their tasks couldn’t be further from what solid teamwork actually is. An effective leader is someone who manages to see where each person’s skills and strengths fit, and relay an order only once.
Inspiring teammates and employees with words is only effective if you have already set up the team to perform well. It is in your actions as a leader that will create this atmosphere and allow effective teamwork to actually happen!
Sharon Kaibel is a performance and productivity coach. Sharon helps business owners create the strategy, structure and systems to build and grow a profitable business. Join her Closed Facebook Group, the #ACHIEVERNETWORK for the community, resources and trainings to become an extraordinary achiever.