For most of us, teamwork is a part of everyday life. Whether it’s at home, in the community, or at work, we are often expected to be a functional part of a performing team.
When faced with a new team, it is essential that we build rapport with one another and develop trust. At the beginning, you cannot expect the relationship to be rosy and everything to fall in to place and get optimum performance.
Forming a team takes time, and team members often go through different stages of development before finally uniting as a team and achieving success.
Teams typically move through four stages of group dynamics according to Bruce Tuckman; forming, storming, norming, and high performing.
Project teams have a fifth stage of development; adjournment.
Teams grow in effectiveness as members spend time together and learn to overcome differences and build on each other’s strengths.
CREATING A CULTURE OF TEAMWORK AS A LEADER
The five values of a strong corporate culture include;
1. Integrity: Be a living example of your leadership values.
2. Accountability: Do what you say you will do, build trust through personal responsibility.
3. Diligence: Work hard, set a good pace, and complete projects on or before deadlines.
4. Perseverance: overcome obstacles while maintaining a positive and enthusiastic attitude.
5. Discipline: Do all of these things, every single day.
WHAT BREAKS A TEAM?
1. Bullies – One member speaks for all.
2. Lack of trust – Inauthentic leadership.
3. Competing agendas – No buy-in, no consensus.
4. Lack of communication – Everyone is talking at once, so no one’s listening.
WHAT BUILDS UP A TEAM?
1. Encouragement – Fostering new ideas, soliciting input.
2. Shared values, shared vision – Working towards a common goal.
3. Clear communication – using consistent methods for keeping everyone informed
4. Ownership – Everyone on the team feels connected and engaged.
RULES FOR LEADING A SUCCESSFUL TEAM;
1. Team members in doubt or aggrieved, must be encouraged to ask questions, talk to the leader or his representative that is capable of providing right answer and/or proper explanation.
2. Team members should be discouraged from gossiping about a member’s concern and/or ask people that cannot give proper answer.
3. Before any aggrieved member meets with the leader to clear the air, it should be a standing policy of the team to always give the leader the benefit of the doubt that the leader means well.
4. Aggrieved team member should be bold to clearly state his/her opinion(s) and/or area(s) of concern.
5. The leader should patiently attend to the concern of the team member and give explanation to the best of his/her ability and not hold the discussion against the member.
Sunday Ade Bello (SAB) is a multi-talented, analytical and highly qualified Management Trainer, Inspired Writer, Examiner and Education Specialist. He is the CEO of WorkLife Training Professionals, Lagos. (firstname.lastname@example.org)