Many companies nowadays emphasize the importance of talent. They are driving on the idea that a few top employees are responsible for most of the overall success. However, most recent productivity studies have shown that even those shining superstars need the help of a strong team in order to succeed. Therefore, the importance of teamwork is emphasized more and more, with companies spending millions on team building strategies.
We need teamwork at work
You know what they say: “If you want to go quickly, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.”
Teamwork brings numerous benefits to companies, some of which we will be discussing in this article.
Teamwork fosters cooperation
Cooperation among teammates is one of the key elements of success. Working together towards a common goal, instead of competing for personal glory leads to great achievements.
Basketball teams in which players choose to pass the ball to teammates with better chances to score win championships more often than teams with superstars trying to keep their hero status and take the shot on their own even when others might have had better chances. In Michael Jordan’s own words:
“Talent wins games, but teamwork and intelligence win championships.”
The same is true for every team that is supposed to achieve a common goal. Working together by sharing experience and ideas, instead of keeping them for themselves can bring better results for all persons involved, and the whole company.
Teamwork broadens horizons
When working on your own, you only have a single perspective over things. While that is not intrinsically wrong, it can be very restricting. On the other hand, working with a team offers different perspectives and ideas, which might end up bringing much better results.
More than that, studies have shown that teams with members coming from diverse backgrounds (gender, age, ethnicity, etc.) are more creative and perform better by up to 35 percent, compared to non-diverse teams. That shows the importance of having different perspectives to work with: instead of viewing a single side of things, teamwork offers a 3D picture.
Teamwork increases productivity
In a team, workload is shared among team members with different skill sets and expertise. Members join their powers together to do a better job, in a shorter time frame than a single person ever could. And what is increased productivity if not faster and better?
Different people have different problem-solving approaches. They generate new ideas and solutions that would be out of hand for any single individual. Effective brainstorming sessions are meant to help teams in their quest to innovate. They also enable them to find solutions by building on each other’s ideas like a pyramid puzzle.
Teamwork provides learning opportunities
Having people with different skills, levels of experience, and abilities working together does not only mean that they will work better and faster. While interacting over work issues, they are also sharing their knowledge with each other. They’re growing together and improving their abilities. They learn from their teammate’s experience and they keep discovering new ways of doing things.
People become more proficient and confident, while the employer is enjoying the benefits of working with more knowledgeable employees at no additional costs. There is no better training a company could provide than offering people the opportunity to learn from each other while actually doing the work. In the end, everybody wins!
Teamwork frames the company culture
A team that works well together will foster a spirit of camaraderie, loyalty, and synergy that will go on and shape the company culture. Working in a positive environment boosts morale and overall happiness and satisfaction, creating a feeling of belonging to something bigger than yourself. Eventually, the team becomes a community, in which everyone understands their role and plays their part for the common good.
By supporting each other, team members build relationships based on trust and mutual respect. Positive team relationships make employees more reliable, effective, and productive. All these traits are ultimately contributing to the success of your company.
Effective teamwork requires effective communication
Besides the team members, there are other factors that influence teamwork, of which the most important are leadership, team size, motivation, and technology. However, there is one key concept that makes effective teamwork possible in the first place, and that is communication.
Team communication is not always that easy. There are lots of issues to be overcome when working with teams: everyone needs to understand their role, the process, and the tasks. This is where the role of the team leader is crucial. They need to make sure that everybody is on the same page when it comes to understanding the work requirements and their part in the team.
Technology also plays a huge part in improving team communications. Smart apps like Hubgets help teams interact, collaborate, share files, and track work progress, regardless of the physical location of their members.
Last but not least, when it comes to teamwork, size does matter 😉 Only so many persons can work together at the same time without creating chaos. While there is no general consent among researchers on what that number is, most agree it is somewhere between 6 and 12 people. Jeff Bezos, CEO of Amazon, came up with a two-pizza rule that became famous, arguing that one should never have more members in a team than they could feed with two pizzas.
Effective teamwork brings lots of benefits to your company. With planning and strategy, but also with the help of technology and good leadership, you can achieve better team productivity. Are you working in a team? Is your team collaborating effective? Share your opinions and experiences with us and our readers in the comments section below.