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6 Super-Effective Ways to Improve Workplace Teamwork

We’ve often heard the phrase that “teamwork makes the dream work” – and it’s not wrong. No organisation can function without a team of people working effectively toward a common goal. And no team can do this without a clear plan and strong leadership.

We all know the pain of a team that’s not firing on all cylinders. If groups of people that are tasked to work together can’t communicate effectively, or don’t trust each other, then performance suffers across the board. If a team doesn’t quite click or gel, there are things you can do to nurture them and promote a healthy, performance-focused working environment.

To help you, we’ve put together a short list of ways you can improve workplace teamwork with a view to supercharging performance and effectiveness.

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6 Ways To Improve Teamwork

1. Follow the Leader

Modelling behaviours you would like to see from your staff is a hugely effective way of improving teamwork. Strong leadership works wonders for teams. As competent as your task force might be, they’ll no doubt need guidance and support to fulfil their roles effectively. Therefore, it’s down to leaders to lead by example, demonstrate the behaviours they’d like to see, work with transparency, and provide effective support as and when it’s requested. Over time, teams will absorb and assimilate these positive behaviours, applying them to their own work with confidence.

 

2. Loud & Clear Communication

Communication lies at the heart of effective teams. That means catching up regularly, sharing ideas, giving and asking for feedback and discussing potential problems. Communication doesn’t always mean total agreement between team members. In fact, healthy debate and discussion can often lead to workable solutions. So, have at it!

That being said, good communication is a fine art and setting ground rules and expectations for communication is an effective way to kick off team working. So, how is it done? First, set clear boundaries. When and how often will you meet? How will meetings be structured to ensure everyone stays on tasks? Will team members check in every day/week/month to communicate how they’re getting on?

Having a clear framework for communication means that everyone is clear about the ways in which they can touch base. Following through on this plan ensures everyone is kept abreast of any updates and changes, while making sure everyone is pulling their weight.

3. Practice Make Perfect

Working well as a team is a skill which can be nurtured and developed. A great way to do this is through team building exercises or team bonding. The beauty of team building is that it can be utilised in a range of situations. They can be used in meetings, to start the day, or as a part of an away day to incentivise and motivate your team. However you apply them, it’s important to take some time to assess the areas in which your teams may be lacking and gear your team building efforts towards improving that. Different team building activities target different skills to give you greater flexibility in refining your team. So, research your options, or take a look at ready-made team building activities, like those offered by KDM Events.

 

4. Recognise, Incentivise and Reward

Keeping your team motivated and energised is key to good performance. One way to maintain these levels is to recognise individual achievements, incentivise team members to perform, and reward them when they do. Incentives can be given in the form of bonuses or extra days off but could also be as simple as a few kind words of thanks and recognition either in person or via email. We all know how motivating it is to be told you are doing a good job, so extending that to your team is an extremely powerful motivational tool.

5. Utilise A Team’s Strengths

We all have different strengths and weaknesses. Effective teams utilise these to their advantage by focusing on an individual’s strength when it comes to task delegation. This sounds like a straightforward, obvious point, but often the effect of doing this is overlooked. People who get to apply their strengths through the working day are six times more likely to be engaged in their job according to Gallup.

Of course, there may be some tasks that need carrying out that no one wants to do. That is unavoidable. A way to deal with this is to be fair in delegation, considering individual preferences and providing support when someone may not feel confident in their performance. Don’t underestimate the transformative potential of delegating a challenging task or responsibility to an employee. If done in the right way, with the right support, it can be incredibly motivating and empowering.

 

6. Make Expectations Clear

It’s no surprise that teams work best when they know what is expected of them. This means presenting each employee with a thorough run down of their responsibilities and checking in frequently with their progress.

Regular meetups allow leaders to reaffirm their expectations and reassess goals in line with an employee’s performance. Not only does this create a culture of accountability and trust, it also gives ample opportunity for team members to ask for support, highlight their challenges, and celebrate their success. Often, meetings throughout a course of a project are used as an opportunity to give people a dressing down rather than build them up. So, switch things up and approach each meeting with employees as a chance to celebrate what’s working and strategise for the things that aren’t.

Taking Steps to Improve Workplace Teamwork

Whether you’re assembling a new team or working with an established one, there are always opportunities to improve workplace teamwork. This starts with clear boundaries and communication and ends with consistent rewards and incentives. While we might want everything to work like clockwork, it’s also important to consider that employees and team members are human with human needs. Catering for these whilst being clear of your expectations are both effective ways to forge ahead and increase performance while ensuring everyone remains happy and motivated to move forwards.

If you’re looking to supercharge your team, our events and activities offer a perfect place to start. Working with you we can help you to build key skills, confidence and motivation among both new and established teams. To check out our latest team building activities in your area, call us today.

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