Organisation are full of many unseen challenge and that is why team building is very important.
Great things in business are never done by one person; they are done by a team of people. Steve Jobs
In the past, most employees didn't get the idea behind team building, they failed to differentiate between "An employee" and "A team member". Having an employee in the first place is not necessarily a bad thing but seeing and treating them as a mere employee does stunt your ability of creating a more favorable work environment.
Everyone commends team efforts but the way most company operate is not encouraging, that is why team work in some becomes a dream that never come true. A team is only strong when they work together, when a top team member don't know how to work with the rest of the team members, their individual talents becomes useless.
A team is strong when they put mind together, more-so, their mindset is strong when it is collective. Your employees’ behaviors are determined buy what you reward or punish as a leader. No matter how much you praise teamwork, if your actions don’t match your words, then unwritten rules take over. It is very crucial you form an army of team members not just a stable employee.
Change the mindset,
See them as a team member not employee: The most important thing organisations should look at when hiring people is what role they will play in a larger group not if they will fit in. Most people look at individualistic mindset, few people see it as "Join a team where your career can be built together as you work with other team members. The reference to "join our team might be there but when you look in you will notice that is not what is practiced, "the mindset is not there".
Start rewarding collectively not individually: If you reward individually don't expect people to start pursuing collective goal because they will want to work hard and also present themselves as Me not We. True leaders encourage collective goals not individual merit but it is so sad that in most organisations the reverse is the case, they encourage performance review, bonuses, and promotions are individual-focused. Do not be surprised that others help that person do do better.
Let me tell you a personal experience;
I use to work in a media firm in Ikeja Nigeria, and i had this manager who i work directly with, he is very good at calling me and the other employees for brief meetings so we can brainstorm over projects, the sad truth is that we were more experienced than him because he was a banker who resigned and joined us to build his career. He will take all our contribution, work with us on it and present it in every meeting like "I came up with some idea" right before us and that is not good enough for a leader, we got pissed several times and during merit awards he was recognized more than others and the award was not presented to us as team, it went to him as an individual.
I was not against the award though but the management should also know that we are team and we have been working together, that action alone can reduce employee's morale. The best way i feel employers can handle this kind of situation is asking for employees feedback, it can be daily, in between days or weekly, ask them of report of what they have done so far, with this a proper record can be taken from time to time.
- HR systems should start focusing more on team behavior not Individual behavior: The focus most be more on team work not individuals alone, to me i recommend team coaching/training over individual coaching/training, If the team has a problem, it needs to be understood, addressed and solved collectively. Dealing just with the leader won’t get the team unstuck, working with individuals alone can hinder team work and a collective approach.
I will like to see your comments for this question;
How does this resonate with you as a leader? If you are a team member in your place of work, I’d love to hear your perspective too.
- Do away with the 'I' mindset and replace it with the 'WE' mindset: In a meeting, during presentations, while talking, SAY WE, This will make your listener more interested in what you are talking about, If you are speaking to me about your organisation using the word "I" that means you are giving me the impression that you are the one doing everything, i will not strike a deal with you because you might not deliver on time and the word 'WE' also make people see you as a professional. If you see yourself as a team member you will focus on the 'WE' mentality that includes creating remarkable experiences with others in the company and with existing and potential customers.
If you own a company and you have not identified this challenge, look deep and try this;
Try introducing a system where no one refers to each other as “employees.” You’d be surprised how quickly you can identify your true team members. This exercise could be your first step in transforming your company's culture to one that is more accountable, enjoyable and a hub for getting things done. Your team members will thank you for it.
I hope this post will be helpful, please kindly drop your own contribution.
Till i come your way next time.