It sounds like a cliche, but teamwork truly is the secret to running a successful business. After all, if your teams do not get along well and struggle to get the job done, it’s your business that will pay the price! Of course, every team goes through rough patches from time to time. This is normal when you have multiple people with different personalities all working together. But, there are some things that everyone can do to help teams run smoothly, and benefit the wider business as a result. So, in today’s post, we’ll be looking at 10 simple ways to improve teamwork in your organisation. Whether you’re struggling with the teamwork basics, or you’re just looking for ideas to make it even better than it already is, these tips should help!
What are the best simple ways to improve teamwork in your organisation?
1. Rethink your team building activities
Everyone has a horror story when it comes to compulsory team-building activities. From the boring to the downright weird, the teambuilding day has long been the one event in the calendar that everyone dreads. But, these events certainly have their place and can definitely be helpful when it comes to improving the way that your teams work together. The way that you go about them, though, may need a bit of a refresh. Instead of booking whole days to go off-site and engage in the sort of activities that everyone tends to hate, a better idea is to work team-building exercises into the fabric of your organisation. This helps to foster the positive working relationships that great teamwork is built upon. And, it doesn’t have to be anything particularly fancy. Just scheduling a meal out on a fairly regular basis gives your team an opportunity to bond outside of work, and build great relationships that will carry over into their working time.
2. Communication is key
As is the case with many things in business, clear communication is the secret to great teamwork. So, if you’re looking for simple ways to improve teamwork in your organisation, improving your communication is a good place to start. Ensure that everyone knows what their role is in a project before it begins, to limit chances of confusion that can hinder teamwork. And, ensure that everyone knows who is leading the project, so they know who they can go to to resolve any issues before they become a major problem.
3. Foster an open culture of communication
Similarly, there is no use in trying to put proper communication into place if employees feel that they can’t speak up or get their voices heard. So, communication needs to be a two-way street. Yes, leadership should be communicating effectively with the team. But, the team members also need to feel as though they can voice their opinions about anything- both the good and the bad. Without open channels of communication from all angles, teamwork quickly becomes ineffective, and it breeds resentment amongst team members who feel as though they have to fight to get heard.
4. Reward successful collaboration
What better way to encourage great teamwork than by rewarding successful examples of it? This will give your teams an incentive to work together well, to the benefit of the whole organisation. Putting teamwork recognition programmes into place is a great way to do this. There are a few ways that you can implement this strategy. For example, sending round a weekly email recognising any particularly effective teamwork from that week. Or, you could even combine two of the ideas in this article and send the team out for a group lunch to recognise their hard work, while also encouraging further team bonding.
5. Set crystal-clear goals
One of the most simple ways to improve teamwork in your organisation is by setting clear goals from the outset. This gives your team a definite picture of what they need to achieve while working together, so they know what they’re working towards. In tandem with good communication, these are the fundamentals to getting a project completed on time and to the best possible standard. It minimises the chances for confusion and keeps everyone accountable and on track, which has plenty of benefits for the whole organisation.
6. Identify any problems quickly
In any team scenario, there is bound to be some problems. Even if the team gets on really well, something always comes up that has the potential to cause conflict. However, this shouldn’t stop the team from performing well. The secret is simply identifying any problems quickly, and dealing with them efficiently. But how can you help your team do this? Well, by encouraging good communication and an open culture where nobody is afraid to speak their mind on any issues that they may be experiencing! Communication really is the key to good teamwork in so many different ways.
7. Accept that there may be differences
Alongside this, it’s important to accept that there will be differences between team members from time to time. This doesn’t have to be a bad thing. After all, the world would be a boring place if everyone thought the same. So, instead of allowing these differences to result in arguments and poor teamwork, instead it should be encouraged that people with differences come to a compromise, and remain open and positive with each other. This should come in time with good, open communication and the ability for everyone to get their voice heard.
8. Listen to your team
One of the best simple ways to improve teamwork in your organisation is simply by ensuring that team leaders listen to their team members. Instead of just directing from the top, they should be happy to really get to know the team, their thoughts, feelings, and concerns. In turn, this will help everyone to be more open with each other. And, it will make sure that everyone who is a part of the team feels valued by the team leaders. This should then lead to higher levels of satisfaction and motivation to get the job done well, so it’s a win-win situation.
9. Don’t micromanage your teams
Everyone hates a micromanager! And, this technique is actually not very effective. If your team members feel that leadership is constantly watching them, they won’t be particularly motivated to carry out a good job. Instead, they will feel as though you do not trust them or respect them. Of course, having some general guidelines, deadlines, and roles in place is effective for good teamwork. But, nobody does their best work with someone breathing down their neck, so make a conscious effort to leave your team members to work in the way that they feel is best for them and the wider team. You’ll probably find that they get the job done just as effectively, if not even more so!
10. Collect feedback and use it to improve
Finally in this list of simple ways to improve teamwork in your organisation, it’s a good idea to collect feedback from each team member once a project is completed. This should tell you how they found working in the team, and what they didn’t like about it so much. Then, you can use this information to improve your ways of working for subsequent projects, or just your teams in general. Plus, giving team members the opportunity to provide feedback, whether it is anonymous or not, is another way to help them feel valued and satisfied in their position within the team. Moving forward, if leaders can show that they genuinely take the feedback on board and listen to what everyone has to say, the culture in the workplace will improve and employee satisfaction should also go up, too- so really, you have nothing to lose!
Conclusion to these simple ways to improve teamwork in your organisation
As this post has hopefully shown you, trying to improve teamwork in your organisation doesn’t have to be a huge struggle. There are plenty of simple things you can do to improve it. And, it all comes down to encouraging a culture of open communication and listening to ensure that everyone’s voice is heard. Once you have these basics locked down, you should find that your teamwork improves, to the benefit of your wider organisation. Ensuring that great teamwork is happening is something that needs to be continually worked on as teams change and an organisation grows. But, if you stick to the basics like the ones mentioned in this post, making sure that this takes place shouldn’t be too difficult.