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Jobs >> Jobs Articles >> Career Feature >> Working in a Team Environment


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Career Feature

Working in a Team Environment

 Dated: 03-25-2010

Do you consider yourself a team player? Do you work alone often and very rarely seek help or give advice to others? Many people prefer working alone and thus they never gain any additional knowledge from the experience of others. When you work in a team environment you have the opportunity to learn and help others. Therefore you will accomplish more.

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You do not necessarily have to work as a ''team'' in the sense that there are five basketball players on the court or 11 football players on each side of the ball on the field. When you are applying the ''team'' concept, you can work with as little as one other person. No matter how many people you work with, 100 or 1, the point is that you collaborate with them as often as possible when needed.

When working in a team environment, people will have different opinions and ideas. You must be willing to express your own ideas while listening and accepting others ideas in a respectful manner. If you immediately shoot down a persons' idea because you feel it is a ''stupid idea'' or ''doesn't make sense'' then you are not being a team player. The most successful companies, regardless of which country they are located in or what they sell all must work as a team to achieve the ultimate goal, which is creating a profitable business and make it run as efficiently as possible.

There are different roles that those working in a team will undertake for the most part. When working in a team environment, one must understand what their role is. If everyone is doing the same job or trying to be the ''leader'' little will get accomplished. There are specific names for those working in a group dynamic such as the ''specialist'' - a team member who has the majority of the knowledge in a given subject, the ''plant'' - the creative innovator who strives to think of new ideas and ways to approach a situation, ''shaper'' - a team member who seeks to get the very best out of the team and tries to instill enthusiasm and confidence in the team.

Whether you are assigning your team members jobs or are doing a job yourself, it is important to understand what an individual can handle and what you can handle yourself. If you have a question then ask the question before you get started on your work. When a team is failing in one aspect, it may fail entirely.

Knowing what your team members are capable of will give you the advantage in succeeding. Why? If you assign a job that you know that person isn't ready for yet, they will struggle and fail to deliver the assignment. If you assign that assignment to someone who has experience in that particular field, then the work will get done in a timely fashion.

When working in a team environment, it is important to be willing to listen to people and be open to new ides. There is nothing a well-organized team can't accomplish. If you come across someone who isn't willing to work in a team environment, you must stress the importance of the team concept. Use old clich├ęs like, ''There is no I in team'' in order to get your point across. The faster you are able to make them understand that the team is more important than one individual, the faster you can resume your own duties.

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