One of the things I miss about large corporate life is the camaraderie and teamwork. In other words, I miss the people and the resources they represent. As life gets busy and more demanding, a good team is imperative to success. While teammates may pose some drama from time-to-time, you should save time with teamwork.

Teamwork is as common of word in the business world as recess is to an elementary school child. And yes, at times, teamwork and recess may appear to have more in common than words like communication, production, or bottom-line.

Everybody needs to be part of a team. We simply aren’t good loners, nor are “going-it-alone” strategies successful. The world’s challenges and demands are too complex. Your team may not always appear to be ideal at the beginning or during a season of collaboration, but may turn out to be your key to timely success.

Not all teams appear ideal. Back in the day when I was involved in youth summer camps, we inevitably played Tug-of-War. The one fat kid always volunteered to anchor the rope and started kicking his heels into the ground to gain leverage with the pride of a sumo-wrestler. The rest would find places on the rope and begin positioning to get a good start as the referee attempted to keep the rope centered over the pit. The game began and everyone pulled together. Regardless what we thought of our team or our chances, we were all in it together.

Each year, someone would shout, “Let’s play boys against girls.” As guys, we always thought this was an awesome idea. As we considered our team, we believed our prospect of victory was solid as we peered down the rope to all the girls on the other side. With confidence building, we failed to notice how many girls were on the other end of the rope. We quickly realized after the whistle sounded that many hands make light work. There must have been twice the hands. It was as if we were pulling against a Chevy pickup as they began to pull us into the pit. In Tug-of-War, numbers and beauty always defeated brawn and optimism.

Just as the girls made quick work of us, you can save time with teamwork. Remember the four “A’s” of customer service: Acknowledge, Appreciate, Affirm, and Assure. I think these are just as applicable to being a good team leader or teammate.

As I look back on times when I formerly worked with other people, I believe the following three things were most valuable.

  • Friendship and encouragement
  • Knowledge and problem solving
  • Help and support

Not much really needs to be said about these three areas. They seem to speak for themselves.

I received a nice call from a former colleague the other day who simply wanted to say hello. It was a great reminder of the value of the team and a painful reminder of how much time I could be saving if she was still on my team.

How do you save time with teamwork?

Save Time with Teamwork
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2 thoughts on “Save Time with Teamwork

  • Teamwork is an critical success factor in businesses today. As the article discussed, there simply is too much complexity in business today for one person to solve problems on their own. My experience has lead me to believe that teams are essential for not only solving problems; they are a great place for mentoring and coaching. In the early part of my career I relished the opportunity to participate with older, wiser colleagues who not only demonstrated leadership but imparted their knowledge to those willing to learn. As I progressed through my career I remembered these lessons and passed it along. The business benefits on the bottom line in many ways tangible and intangible from teamwork.

    1. You illustrate well the need to give to the team as opposed to simply focusing on what you can get out of one.

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