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Saturday, December 24, 2011

How to Improve Teamwork in the Workplace

by Jacinth Klee

For an organization to succeed and sustain commendable results in current economic times, it is imperative to develop and maintain a culture of teamwork within the whole organization. Teamwork comprises of co-operation and integration of efforts in order to achieve better results and higher job satisfaction among workers, rather than individual focus and unhealthy competition, which causes suspicion and hostility within the company. Moreover, working in teams promotes creation of ideas, improves performance through sharing while reducing unnecessary duplication of efforts.

To develop teamwork culture within an organization, the management must first understand the essential components of teamwork, the characteristics of a successful team, the factors that motivate the members (or workers) to work together towards achieving common goals and the mechanics of achieving teamwork within a company, before they can communicate their expectations to the rest of the company.


Clear Goals
To build a teamwork culture, the workers in an organization must know and understand the goals of the company. It would be very unproductive if the goals are unclear, and you will have a situation where individuals have their own interpretation of the company goals, and thus work towards totally different objectives.
The organizational goals and objectives must be clearly and distinctly communicated to the workers or team. In order for them to be committed to the results, they have to know what they are expected to accomplish and understand how they will work together to achieve these goals.

Mutual Trust
The general willingness to trust differs with each individual, depending on their personality types, academic and social backgrounds. There will be people who are at extreme ends of the spectrum the gullible and the suspicious. Building trust is therefore very important; employees or team members have to believe in the character and ability of each other. However, the organizational culture will also affect the climate of trust. An organization that values openness, empowerment and honesty is more likely to create trusting cultures.

Integrated commitment
This means intense loyalty and dedication to the company. The employees identify with their organization and possess a feeling of pride and belonging. They are willing to expend energy, time and resources to achieve the organizational goals.

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