By: Brittany Werth
Working as part of a team has become common in most professional environments. But what happens when it starts to go wrong? As the days go by meetings are set, objectives are defined and rules are put into place but the important aspects, which lead to a strong teams, are pushed to the side. Many employees are left wondering, “How did we get here?”
The first and foremost culprit in many situations is a lack of trust. When an individual feels like they have to watch out for themselves and hide any weaknesses that they may have from a colleague they find untrustworthy, it is difficult to focus on the task at hand. It is important to get to know the people that you work with, learn their strengths and weaknesses and allow them to learn yours. When you can understand and appreciate what each individual brings to the table you can being working towards a common goal.
In any kind of group setting there are going to be differences of opinion and that’s okay. It only becomes a problem when it isn’t properly dealt with. A fear of conflict can lead to a fake sense of comradery and a very unhappy group. Those tasked with managing any group of people cannot be afraid of stepping in and essentially saying ‘no’. A more challenging conversation may arise but when it has been properly dealt with, everyone can grow, learn and move on from the situation.
Responsibilities are necessary for a team to succeed and when a member exhibits a lack of accountability it can lead to break downs within the group. When each member of a team has a responsibility they have an incentive to strive for. When someone does not pull their weight or ‘passes the buck’ it can lead to a lack of trust and dissension among team members.
Growing a strong team takes time and effort. You need to cultivate a sense of trust among members, understand that conflict is natural and deal with it accordingly when it arises and assign each member a set of responsibilities and hold them accountable for those responsibilities. If these things can be met, you can bring together a strong group of individuals who not only work well as a team but can handle anything that might come there way.