By Kerry Anne Cassidy
Romance is in the air – how sweet the fragrance!
But how can we extend this sweetness and light into our workplaces? In this week’s post, we look at 10 ways you can review and reinvigorate your teamworking skills and relationships to create an environment of fun, excitement and passion (and dare we say, unrivaled team spirit!) where bottom line results are a by-product, not the means to an end of hard slog and little satisfaction at work.
– a great quote from an unknown source
How often have you heard employees lamenting on how little interest their manager/leader has in them and yet how much interest these same leaders place on achieving workplace results even though it may mean sacrificing evenings, weekends and time with loved ones?
As leaders, your single-most important task is building relationships within your team. All the other tasks and priorities you have, pale beside this one. Why? Because without your people, you have no way of achieving singularly the goals you and your department heads set. Your performance comes as a result of your people: your teamworking skills are a measurable result of how much you put into caring for your team.
If you are feeling brave today, take our easy 10-question teamworking skills effectiveness survey to review the effectiveness of your teamworking skills and how much your team feel cared for by their leaders.
For best results, get all members of your team to complete this survey, then get in touch with me to review your results in order to develop a strategy to address key challenges around team spirit. For the next 5 days I am offering a complimentary, obligation-free 1-hour consultation on developing strategies to help your team to overcome your current challenges. This offer expires on Thursday, 20 February, so get in before the offer is over!
10 Tips to Boost your Teamworking Skills
1. Accept people for the wonderful package they are
We all want to be accepted, yet we all judge ourselves and each other – often negatively and especially if those we are judging negatively, are not like us or have something to anger or hurt us. At work, we have people we work with who are different to us. Take the time to think about the people in your team and ask yourself: “How can I learn to accept each member of my team?” The answers may surprise you!
2. Express your Expectations
Do you know what you want from your current relationships? Most of us don’t take the time to think about our expectations from ourselves and others in our relationships. And so, when things go pear-shaped, we find it difficult to resolve situations positively.
By thinking about, writing down and then comparing these expectations with our partners, work mates and managers, we set clear boundaries of our expectations that allow for robust and honest discussion. We also importantly are able to weigh up whether the relationship is worth pursuing and fighting for or, making a clean end to it before it becomes ugly.
3. Lift others up
When you focus outwards rather than inwards, stuff happens. The energy that comes from connecting between people makes a difference and people talk about this. Focus on positively building your workmates rather than pointing out their flaws. Their self-esteem and your office culture will thank you for it.
4. Acknowledge Others
Have you ever experienced a moment or time where you have said something to someone and it’s like they listened but they didn’t hear you? When you ask them about it, they nod and say yes, they heard you. But you walk away feeling devalued or even a little miffed by the interaction? As a leader, it’s important to acknowledge what people say to you, even if it’s a yes, no or ok. Everyone wants to know that they count and they you have listened to them.
5. Find ways to support your communities
Have you ever noticed that people who get noticed are those who give within their communities? Whether it’s lending their time for a well-loved charity or helping out during times of crisis, they always seem to be in the thick of things, meeting and growing their sphere of influence.
Rather than looking inward, look outward and see where you can provide support or a helping hand. You will feel a lot more energised and positive about yourself and the world in which you live – guaranteed!
6. You count, even when you don’t know that you do
Writing a blog each week takes commitment and time. And very often, you only hear feedback when you meet with folks because we are all busy to “comment” with each article we come across. So, it’s very important that when you give, that your goal for doing it is not lost. I write my blog to uplift and inspire. On my recent holiday, where I had time to connect with friends and family, I received a lot of positive feedback from many and unexpected quarters about the impact of my articles and interviews. I thought I wasn’t making a difference and yet I have been blown away by the opposite. So, remember that even though people may not tell you that you count and make a positive difference, know and take heart that you do!
7. Value your Workmates
I find it much easier to like people who I like and have relationships with. So, when I don’t get along with someone or support their views, I have to take a step back and ask myself, “What could I do to build relationship with this person?” Very often, when you reach out, you will be surprised by the positive response you receive and how quickly your initial negative feelings about someone change when you start to see them as likeable.
“It’s as simple as this. When people don’t unload their opinions and feel like they’ve been listened to, they won’t really get on board.”
― Patrick Lencioni: The Five Dysfunctions of a Team: A Leadership Fable
8. Forgive and Move On
We all get hurt by people. If we store and hold onto these hurts, they fester and become inflamed and start to poison our systems and viewpoints. We get sick easier as our internal judges start to take over, pointing out our weak points and judging others, affecting the health of our relationships and our self-esteem.
It’s so much healthier and more stress-relieving to forgive and let go so you can move forward.
9. Celebrate your Wins
When last did you take a moment to stop to celebrate the goals – both small and large that you have achieved in your team? When we take the time to celebrate, take note of and recognise our and other’s efforts and achievements, we build team spirit and goodwill.
10. Be Present, Move Ahead
There is a lovely Chinese quote I came across which basically says, “When you feel sad it is because you are looking to the past which holds regret, when you feel anxious it’s because you are looking to the unknown future but when you remain in the present, that is where you are happiest and most content.” If we can both remain in the present as well as plan for our futures, we allow ourselves the gift of being present with the people in our lives which allows us to experience joy and planning for the future gives us a focus and motivation to keep moving forward.
Building relationships that focus on improving morale and energising your team spirit is ongoing work that enriches us and the lives we live. The relationships we build today will affect our lives tomorrow. May you be happy and fulfilled in all that you do because of what you put into yours!
These are just 10 ideas on how to build your teamworking skills and enriching your workplace relationships. However, I am pretty sure that you have some of your ideas on building teamworking skills. I would LOVE to hear from you what these could be, so please share in the comments section below.
Keep your head up and your focus moving forward,