“People rarely succeed unless they have fun in what they are doing.” ~ Dale Carnegie
How is your team at work doing? Do you and our colleagues enjoy coming to work? Do you trust your teammates? Would you be able to count on them to watch out for you? Can you relax if you are on vacation because you know they will help you out?
These are important questions and should be answered honestly. We live in a workforce that can seem callous and self-centered. According to Gallup, 50% of employees have left a job because of a bad boss. CNN reported Millennials will change jobs 4 times within their first ten years out of college.
It can seem discouraging when it is realized that many people don’t work in great teams or really enjoy their jobs. Yet, there are shining examples of enjoyable workplaces. Maybe you are at one or you have a friend who loves their job. You know the type, they always talk about their job with glowing admiration.
At Shannon Talent Solutions we believe that type of job satisfaction can be had by all. Although our specialty is in Executive Recruiting, we also work with companies to improve team unity and leadership development.
Here are some of our favorite ways to build an unstoppable team.
It Starts at the Top
“A leader is one who knows the way, goes the way, and shows the way.” ~ John C. Maxwell
Sometimes cliches are cliches for a reason, they are true. Since childhood, we know the value of a strong leader. Not a boss, but a leader. The person who will go first, take on challenges, protect the group, and overall make sure the team is on a patch to success. If you are the leader of your team then it is essential you care for your teammates. Watch over them, give them advice, help them when they are in need, and make sure they have clear direction.
If you are not the leader . . . then take the time to realize you are a leader. We live in a world where everyone is a leader. With online tools and collaborative workplaces there is no hiding from others. Your actions, words, work ethic, and attitude are seen by your teammates. You have the ability to influence others much more than you might understand. Take time to self-evaluate. Are you bringing a positive attitude to work? Do you listen to others? Are you jumping in to help out when it is needed? If yes, then keep it up! You are likely inspiring others, if the answer is no, then work on improving yourself.
All teams start and end with leadership, make sure your team has a strong leader in place. If you are not the designated leader, then take charge with your great attitude.
Create Clear Lines of Communication
“About 75% of employers rate team work and collaboration as “very important”, yet only 18% of employees get communication evaluations at their performance reviews.”
Look at the contradiction, we all know strong teams have clear communication. Yet, employees do not receive the communication they need to improve.
Have you ever seen a really excellent sports team or musical group? Did you notice how they communicate with each other? Exceptional teams master communication. Everyone knows their role as they actively speak with one another. We have seen disastrous results when teams are not clear on who is doing what. Confusion, frustration, and anger occur when people don’t know what is expected of them.
If you are the leader of your team, make sure everyone knows their role and create systems for people to communicate in a non-threatening environment.
If you are not the leader and feel there is a lack of communication, ask to speak with your superior over coffee. This will disarm them and will allow them to not feel cornered. Bring up your concerns and come with solutions on how communication can be improved. Perhaps better job descriptions, ask for performance expectations, or see if they will allow you to set up a consistent team meeting for the express purpose of everyone explaining what they are working on and what is needed.
Antagonism stems from a lack of communication, when there are clear lines, people know how to act and will help each other out.
“change of pace + change of place = change of perspective” ~ Mark Batterson
It is not always possible to get a team out of their routine, but if possible schedule quarterly outings and a yearly retreat. Ideally the retreat is overnight somewhere fun. There is something about spending enjoyable time with others that brings teams together.
People come together by removing them from their normal pace of life and changing their environment. Think back to when you were young. Did you go to summer camp? In college, did you do a study abroad? How close did you become with the people around you?
Now imagine if you could capture that closeness with your colleagues and then return to work? Odds are you would have a strong team who would be willing to do anything for each other.
Depending on the size of your team and budget restraints, a retreat might be difficult, yet their is no denying it is a game change which will dramatically help your team.
Unified teams are unstoppable. From sports to the military to companies, the ones with strong teams seem to do the impossible.
If your team unity is lacking, try the above tips. If you would like hands on development, contact us today.
We will work tirelessly to help your team become unstoppable.