“Coming together is a beginning. Keeping together is progress. Working together is success.” ~Henry Ford
In today’s world, teams are the new norm. No (wo)man is an island, and today rarely is work done in isolation. Teams are the heart of how most organizations get things done today.
Most successful teams do two things to produce results, motivate and sustain change:
1) take action and
2) create effective working relationships with each other.
For most teams, taking action is the easy thing, the no-brainer; it’s those pesky working relationships that trip up most teams.
So, what are the secrets of successful teams?
1) Conscious and intentional working culture: Successful teams know what type of working culture they want to have, and don’t leave it to chance. It’s not an accident that teams work well together, or don’t. Successful teams take specific actions to create a culture that supports collaboration and teamwork.
2) Working agreements: Successful teams have working agreements that spell out the behaviors all members agree to demonstrate that support their desired team culture. This includes having specific agreements laid out in advance for what to do when they fail to honor these agreements. This allows the team to acknowledge their humanity, and have a plan for how they will recover when they make a mistake.
3) Minimize toxic behavior: Successful teams know that despite our best intentions, we aren’t always at our best. Successful teams know what ineffective communication can do, and seek to minimize the use of toxic behaviors, and repair any problems when they occur.
4) Acknowledge each other and the team: Successful teams understand the importance of celebration and acknowledgment. They name the behaviors that individuals and the team demonstrate consistently, and the impact those positive behaviors have on the work, the culture and each other.
5) Lead from any seat: Successful teams take responsibility for their working culture, and don’t wait for those with titles or positional power to make things better. Whether you are the team leader or team participant, you have a role in creating effective working relationships, and a healthy team culture.
In the comments below, I want to hear from you! Let me know:
1) Which of these secrets do you or your team already use?
2) Which one could you or your team do more of?
Well put Hanna! Strong teams do take responsibility for themselves as an individual members and look out for each other as a whole. A big part of it – as you put so well – is understanding where you fit and what is expected. – Susan
Hanna Cooper, MPH, PCC, CPCC, ORSCC says
Thanks for commenting, Susan! I know you’re speaking from experience as one who contributes a lot to her team as well! : )