Imagine this: your team, happy, productive, working like a well-oiled machine. Everybody gets along well with each other, and you feel more like friends than co-workers. Sounds good, doesn’t it? Unfortunately, this is not the case in many workplaces, despite the efforts of local HR managers. Team members, no matter how closely working together, might feel odd with each other or outright avoid one another if it’s not related to work. Nobody wants that to happen, so let’s take a closer look at what makes your employees work like a dream team.
Recruiting the dream
Putting the dream in front of the team begins already in recruitment. While screening for potential candidates, don’t focus solely on skills. Think about broader aspects: what kind of personality do they have, what keeps them motivated, with what kind of people would they work well together? Personality tests such as the Meyers-Briggs Type Indicator can help you in identify what lies beneath a person’s outer shell. If you are recruiting to an existing team, keep your old employees also in mind. Organizations specialized in recruiting can help you in this.
Teamwork makes the dream work…
…is a common (and to be honest, a quite clichéd) saying, but it is true, nonetheless. Team Player Productions lists your own example as crucial when promoting teamwork – nobody wants to work with a grumpy manager. Define your communication channels, conflict resolution strategies and individual responsibilities for each team member so that your team members have clear rules for interacting with each other.
Also, making sure that your team has the most optimal working environment can make all the difference, says Inc. Flexible working spaces can do wonders, as your employees are not restricted to their desks anymore. Consider getting a big dining table to encourage people to have lunch together and to take a break from work. If you don’t have a clear idea about what to do, ask your employees directly: they not only get the environment that supports their (team-) work but also feel appreciated by you asking for their opinion.
It’s not only about work
People work better when they enjoy their work, so think about ways how you can make your employees feel more relaxed and fun. Adding a pool table to the workplace or going for drinks after work can help in creating relationships (not the romantic kind) between co-workers, and that transmits back to work as improved cooperation and team spirit. Getting feedback from your employees is also a safe bet.
When thinking about teamwork among employees, focus on interpersonal relationships and enablement. How can this particular group of people work better together? What do they need in order to achieve the status of dream team? And most importantly: what can I do to make that happen? A team that functions well together not only performs well but actually likes to do so – it’s a win-win situation for everybody.4