Top sports players get championship rings. The inner circles of winning candidates get big jobs. Rock bands that really connect sell lots of records and get to live like rock stars.
But there are benefits to being on a great team, even if most people will never know about what you do.
Perhaps the most important is also the most obvious – I think it’s a deep-seated human urge to enjoy doing things at the same time.
There’s got to be some reason we invented synchronized swimming.
All joking aside, there’s something about being part of a group working together towards a common goal that feels really great.
Here are some more specific pluses:
Shorthand – Yeah, I know acronyms are bad, but when it’s just your co-workers, using the language you all know can simplify the workday.
Keeping up – When I work with people I think are really good at their jobs, I want them to think well of me, too. I like feeling the need to stay at the top of my game. It’s energizing, I learn a lot and we all come up with a better product.
Understanding – Good team members get where everyone is coming from. When colleagues know you’re under pressure and lend a hand, or raise a glass to celebrate an achievement, it makes even the toughest projects seem more like a game.
Not having to worry – One of the best things about a great team is having co-workers who are aces at their jobs. When you work with a great graphic artist you know the images will rock and that the ads will meet the assorted specifications. Having a great accountant on the team means the books will be in order, and the projections will be accurate. And so on. In a nutshell, all this means that you can concentrate on your job and know that everyone else is taking care of theirs.
Multiplying benefits – With a great team, it all adds up – and then some. Great teams are more than the sum of their parts. I particularly get a kick out of working on a joint project with people I respect, but who have a completely different background from me. I’ve worked with environmentalists, musicians, visual artists, radio producers and entrepreneurs of all stripes, and I love to hear how people tackle a problem with an approach completely different from mine. Taking the best from multiple perspectives can generate comprehensive and creative solutions.
I’m sure there are more benefits to being on a great team than I’ve listed here. What are your favorites?
But now here’s the most important question. How do you make a great team? It seems to me that the key to creating a great team is having an energizing, shared goal. And what kinds of goals work for you?
by Danielle Dresden