How to Work Effectively on a Team

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How to Work Effectively on a Team

Knowing how to work well on a team is essential to being successful today. Knowing what it takes to be productive and synergistic when working with others will keep you marketable and help you maintain a healthy, supportive network. For some people learning the secrets of this can be difficult, so the Ignite Your Potential Coaches have curated tips that can level up your teamwork playbook.

1. Strive for Effective, Clear Communication

When communication is effective everyone involved feels accomplished and satisfied. There is less room for misunderstandings and it lowers the potential for conflict. Without effective communication, mistakes and arguments will occur. Try to:

  • Be Aware of Your Body Language
  • Intend to be Open Minded and Respectful
  • Be Clear, Concise, and Participate
  • Practice Active Listening

According to a Forbes article by Dianne Schilling, there are 10 steps to effective listening. 

We recommend this article to further enhance your communication skills. Choose one or two suggestions that apply to you and try them at your next meeting.

2. Build Trust

Ideally, a team generates an environment where people feel comfortable taking reasonable risks, stating their perspective, advocating for their strategy, asking questions, and proposing action items. Champion for your team to:

  •        Expect and Appreciate Disagreement
  •        Do What They Say They Will Do
  •        Take Responsibility and Share When Goals Cannot Be Accomplished
  •        Work in Collaboration not Competition
  •        Commit Together to Working as a Highly Functional Team


3. Manage Conflict

Work cannot be done efficiently if there is constant bickering and tension. If workflow is behind because of conflict, you should address it. When moving to do so consider:

  •        Identify Points of Agreement and Disagreement through Active Listening
  •        Ask Clarifying Questions
  •        Use “I” Statements Instead of Blame
  •        Develop a Plan Together to Resolve Conflict

4. Adaptability

When working on a team, you already know that everything is not going to go your way. Being adaptable does not mean you are allowing others to take advantage of you or that you are weak. It does not mean letting go of your principles. Compromise is not giving in. The ability to adjust is what collaboration and working on a team is all about. We encourage:

  • Being Open to Change
  • Breathe, Feel Your Feet on the Ground, and Practice Patience
  • Exploring Outside Your Comfort Zone
  • Increase Awareness and Tolerance When Feeling Resistance

Whether it’s work life or personal life, collaboration with others can be awesome and it can be difficult. Learning the art of dealing with different personalities and opinions is not easy. Yet there are so many benefits that it only makes good sense to continue developing mastery in this area. We live in a diverse world that will only get more diverse. And while research shows that this is a great thing for business, understanding how to work on a diverse team and supporting teamwork is also an essential skill in our modern workplace.

After reading this article, may you be inspired to continue building your teamwork toolbox. If you want to learn more about the importance of sleep and how it can help you achieve success in both your professional and personal life, our award-winning coaches at the Ignite Your Potential Centers offer complimentary 25-minute phone sessions.

We are the #1 career coaches in San Francisco and Los Angeles, let us show you how we earned that praise.