Category: Teamwork

Collaborative Teamwork

Collaborative Teamwork

To overcome significant challenges, excellent teamwork is required. When you face challenges as a team, the one quality that is most valuable in a team member is the ability to collaborate with other team members. Collaboration is more than just working together with one another. Whereas cooperation is working together agreeably, collaboration can be described as working together aggressively. In a collaborative effort, each team member brings value to the team. The sum of collaborative teamwork is always greater than its parts.

Do you see yourself as a collaborative team member? You may not be working against the team, but that does not mean you are working for it. Do you bring cooperation and added value to your team?

Related: Building Teams by Encouraging Teamwork

Team Members are Collaborators, not Competitors

In any team there is the potential for competition because all people have their goals, hopes and dreams that they want to achieve. Collaborative team members are more interested in completing others than competing with others. For a team to work together effectively, competition within the team must never reach a point where it hurts the team.

Be Supportive of Team Members

If you are preoccupied with looking out for your interests, you become naturally suspicious of everyone. To be a collaborative team member you need to suspend suspicions and become a team player. It comes down to attitude. You have to learn to assume other people’s motives are good unless proven otherwise. When you trust people, you will treat them better and will be more likely to create collaborative relationships.

Focus on the Team

Where you focus your attention says a lot about whether you compete with others or complete others. When your focus is on the team and not you, you are more likely to pass the baton instead of trying to finish the race yourself.

Create Victories through Multiplication

Many great things can be achieved through teamwork. Collaboration has a multiplying effect. It releases and harnesses your skills and that of the other team members.

How to Become a Collaborative Team Member

  • Think Win-Win-Win: When you collaborate with other team members, you win, they win and the team wins. Find a competitor on your team and share information with that team member. Working together will benefit both you and the team.
  • Complement Other Team Members: Look to team up with others that have strengths in the area of your weaknesses and vice versa. Seek those in the team with complementary gifts to yours and work together.
  • Remove yourself from the Picture: Make it a habit of asking what is best for the team. Instead of always looking to promote your ideas, ask how the team would do if you were not involved in the solution. If it would do better, then propose ideas that promote and involve other people on the team.


Resource: The 17 Essential Qualities of a Team Player



The Importance of Adaptability in Teamwork

The Importance of Adaptability in Team Work

Personal rigidity does not mix well with teamwork. As a member of a team, you need to adapt yourself to others in order to be a good team player. Team players that are adaptable are teachable, emotionally secure, creative, and service minded.

Related: Building Teams by Encouraging Teamwork

Adaptable Team Players Are Teachable

An adaptable team member places a high priority on breaking new ground and is highly teachable. If you are highly skilled in one area, you can use and adapt those skills to new projects. This approach will only work for those team members that are teachable. Team members who are not teachable have a difficult time dealing with change and, as a result, they never adapt well.

Adaptable Team Players Are Emotionally Secure

Everything is a challenge or a threat to the team member that is not emotionally secure. They will tend to react with rigidity and suspicion when another talented person is added to the team, there is a change in their position, or a change in the way things are done. An emotionally secure team member is not nervous by the change. They can evaluate the new situation and change their responsibilities based on its merits.

Adaptable Team Players Are Creative

People that adapt easy are usually creative. When difficulties come, they find a way to overcome them. Creative people do not act in fear when they are challenged to do something different; they say, “let’s try it, even if we blow it.”

Related: Creative Thinking Outcome Based Team Building Activities

Adaptable Team Players Are Service Minded

Team members that are focused on themselves are less likely to make changes for the team than those who are focused on serving others. When your goal is to serve the team, adapting to accomplish the goal is not that difficult.

How to Become a More Adaptable Team Member

  • Make learning a habit: Always look for new things to learn, share it with your friends or colleagues and file away what you have learnt for future use.
  • Reevaluate your role in the team: Look at your current role in the team and try and discover if there is another role you could fulfill better than your current one.
  • Think outside the box: Many people are not adaptable because of negative ruts. Do not think of reasons why something cannot be done, but think of how it can be done. Look for unconventional solutions when you meet a challenge. You will be surprised how creative you can become if you continually strive to do so.

Resources: The 17 Essential Qualities of a Team Player