How leaders can promote teamwork

As a leader, it’s your job to get the most out of your team. One of the ways you can do this is by promoting a good team dynamic. There are lots of benefits to be gained from having a well-functioning and collaborative team. Team members are able to share the load and work to their strengths. Working together means you’re more likely to meet your targets effectively and on time. A good team ethos can also boost morale and motivation amongst your employees, which in turn leads to improved employee engagement and retention.

Promoting teamwork is certainly important to your company and its objectives. Here are some tips on how to do it:

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Create A Mix Of Skills

A successful team can be attributed, in part, to how carefully it has been created. When composing a new team or hiring new additions for an existing team, assess how their personality and skills fit together. You should be looking for a mixture of leaders and followers within your team to minimise the chance of conflict. You should also ensure that you have a wide variety of skillsets present within the team. This will mean all bases are covered when it comes to completing projects and tasks.

Set Objectives

A team working towards a shared goal is much more likely to achieve success. Common goals help to establish a dynamic of collaboration. Set and communicate clear objectives for your team. Discuss together how you aim to meet those objectives. Get your team to provide regular updates on their progress and celebrate the milestones you reach in working towards the final goal.

Define Responsibilities and Procedures

Having a clearly defined role within the team can help employees to work more effectively and to capitalise on their strengths. Whilst clear responsibilities are important, team members should also be encouraged to help one another and share their knowledge when appropriate. Clearly delineating procedures in case of team conflict is also useful. This ensures that your team members will contact you quickly in the event of a problem, allowing you the chance to resolve it promptly before an issue escalates.

Promote Good Communication

Good communication is essential if a team is to function effectively. Promote a culture of transparency by listening to staff and sharing information with them. Set aside time for a short meeting in the middle of each week for your team to come together and discuss what they’re working on and how this links to overall objectives. Encourage team members to tell you and their colleagues if they’re feeling overstretched and in need of some help. Good communication will ensure that that excellent mix of skills you assembled when putting your team together are all put to good use.

Bring Everyone Together

Teambuilding exercises or away days are a popular method for encouraging team cohesion and developing team relationships. But there are other ways to promote a culture of teamwork too. Be careful to say “we” rather than “I” when talking about projects, goals and successes. Celebrate team successes as joint rather than individual achievements. And consider getting together out of the confines of the office for after work drinks or a lunch to celebrate a team member’s birthday. Working in this way boosts morale as well as helping to establish and nourish team interactions.

A good team work dynamic doesn’t always come naturally. Often, it takes a lot of time, thought and good communication to build an effective team. As a leader, you should work to nurture your employees and help them to work to the best of their ability, both as individuals and as part of your team.

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With a background in business administration and management, Tess Pajaron currently works at Open Colleges, Australia’s leading online educator. She likes to cover stories in careers and marketing.