“There’s no I in team!”
This is a popular saying we hear a lot in business and sports.
Even though I love the idea of teams. Working together towards a common goal and the satisfaction of accomplishing more and in less time.
I feel I break out in a poison ivy-like rash INSIDE my body whenever I hear the words, “there’s no I in team.”
In talking about teamwork with a friend, she said this that made me laugh. “There IS an ‘I’ in team, hidden in the ‘A’ hole.” My graphic designer friend created me this.
I use the term bosshole to describe a boss who is an a**hole.
Bossholes have ruined the most well-intended quotes turning them into clichés.
Despite its overuse causing rashes and eyes to roll throughout the world, these words are still true. There’s no I in team.
Please get your grounding in teams before you use this quote.
Related: Be A Leader Not A Bosshole
Related: The Difference Between Leadership and Management
What is a team?
There are many types of teams and groups. A team can be defined as a group of people who work together to achieve a common goal. A team can be as small as two people or as large as a hundred. It can be as formal as an organization or as informal as a bunch of friends working together to accomplish a task.
Related: 7 Important Team Work Skills You Need In School And Your Career
The Importance of Teamwork
It’s hard to deny the importance of teamwork. People who are part of a team are more productive and creative than people who are not. This is because people who are part of a team can share ideas, insights, and information which results in a much better product or service. Teamwork is essential for the success of any organization.
We’ve all been in teams. And, for the most part, we’ve all probably been in frustrating teams. Many of us have probably been in barely functional teams that can’t decide what font to use on a report, let alone doing any meaningful work.
If you’re reading this, then you’re probably thinking about how to improve your current team, or you’re thinking about creating a new one. Here’s the thing: It’s not easy to build a high-performance team. In fact, it can be downright challenging, but it is possible. I’m sharing a few tips with you below to support your efforts.
How to Build a High-Performance Team
Know your strengths and weaknesses
Knowing your strengths and weaknesses as well as the strengths and weaknesses of your teammates can help you build a team that complements one another. When you have a good team, you’ll have less stress, you can focus on being a good leader, and you will be able to achieve more together than doing it alone.
Develop a Common Vision
Those who work in a team tend to share a common vision. They know what they want to accomplish and how they want to get there. When the entire team shares this vision, everyone can focus on the same goal, and work towards it together.
The first step is to clarify what you want to accomplish.
What do you want to achieve?
What is your vision for the future?
What is your purpose?
Some vision creating tips:
Make it clear: Make sure your vision is clear, and that everyone understands it, and has access to it. Don’t be afraid to repeat, repeat, repeat your vision.
Be patient: When you have a clear vision of what you want to accomplish, it’s time to start working on your vision. You may not be able to achieve your vision in one day, but you can accomplish your vision over time. Let me give you another often-used saying: “Rome wasn’t built in a day.” Keep showing up! You’ll get there.
Get Everyone on Board with team building
One of the biggest obstacles to creating a successful team is getting everyone on board. Teamwork is just that. It’s work. In other words, when you put together a group of people, it’s not enough to say that you want them to work together. You also have to make sure that they’re all on the same page if you’re going to win. If you’ve ever worked in a team, you know that getting everyone to agree on a plan of action can be challenging. As a leader, you need to be able to create a vision and strategy that will help you build a cohesive team that will succeed together. That’s where the concept of “team building” comes into play. Team building is the process of getting people to get to know each other so they can work together. It’s an essential step in creating successful and winning teams.
Don’t know where to start with team building? Ask your team for ideas!
Were you looking for some ideas now? Company retreat company, Surf Office has some great ideas on short team building activities that are 10 minutes to less.
Make Everyone Feel Like They’re a Part of the Team
If you want to reach your goals, then you need to make sure that everyone feels valued and included. You want to make sure that people are included in meetings, decisions, and projects. It doesn’t matter what kind of team you have—whether it’s a family, a sports team, or a business team—if everyone feels like they are a part of the group, then you’re going to be able to achieve a lot more.
Here are a few tips for making people feel like a team member:
Get everyone involved: Involve everyone in the team. When you involve people, you get them excited. If you don’t include them, you get no results.
Give feedback: Give constructive feedback to your team. Give feedback to your team so they can grow and learn.
Focus on the positive: Focus on the positive. Most people always find things to complain about. Don’t do that. If you focus on the good things, you’ll see more good things and so will others.
Be encouraging: Be encouraging to your team. Encourage them to do their best and let them know that you see they are working hard and doing a good job.
Manage the Differences Between Individuals
Going back to the saying “there’s no I in team” if we were good at everything, there would be no need for teams. The best teams are those who are willing to accept and embrace their differences. We all have our strengths and weaknesses, and when it comes to working with others, we need to be able to accept that they will have different experiences and perspectives. If you want to get the best out of your team, you need to be able to understand and respect the differences between them. This can be challenging but part of the process of good teamwork.
I’ve got a few tips for managing team differences:
Create a strong team culture: Create a team culture. How will you make your team feel comfortable and safe? How will you create a positive environment?
Focus on the team: Focus on your team, not on individual needs. Focus on the team’s needs and the team’s goals.
Work together as a team: Work together as a team. Don’t let the differences between individuals keep you from accomplishing your team’s goals.
Have a plan for managing conflicts: How will you manage conflicts between your teammates? What are your solutions for handling differences? How will you deal with personality conflicts?
As a leader, if you want to get the best results from your team, and before you blurt out the obvious, “there’s no I in team” take a moment and focus on two things.
First, you need to be clear about what you want. You need to communicate your goals clearly to your team and get them excited about what they are working towards.
Second, you need to create a working environment where everyone feels comfortable and valued. That is how you create a team that will deliver great results.
Then decide whether you wish to use this eye-roll-inducing expression. Although I don’t recommend it, the choice is always yours.
I know you can build a great team. I’m cheering you and your team on.
Want support with building your team? If heck yes, you’re invited to The Awesome Leader League!
The Ultimate Go To Collection of Resources For Leaders To Skyrocket Their Career and Build Better Teams.
Dr. Rebecca P. Morgan is an award-winning former Disney leader, best-selling author, the founder of Choose Awesome Company, and the creator of The Awesome Leader League.
She has spent the past two decades studying leadership, business, and developing leaders at all levels at Disney University, and trained people and organizations through the Disney Institute.
Her practical approach based on deep experience and respected research is that the connection between people and profits can transform leaders and their teams to be more creative, resilient, productive, profitable—and happier.