A team player is not necessarily liked by everyone, nor does a team player usually like everyone on the team. However, a true team player is an employee that can be counted on to do his or her part of the work and be relied on to complete tasks and work cooperatively with others. It is true also that not everyone enjoys working with other people, some prefer to do their work by themselves, thinking “if you want something well done, do it yourself”.
But there will be times where you will be “forced” to work in a group. Well, maybe not forced. But let’s face it, not one has ten arms, ten hands and can be at ten places at the same time. In many situations, you will have to count on other people. Now, the big question: Maybe you will be able to trust other people, but can people trust you?
There is no big secret in being a good team player. First of all, it is important to have respect for all the members who are working with you. Remember, you don’t need to like them, but need to respect. Do not ever do to someone something you wouldn’t like to be done to yourself. Other than that, there are a few tips that can be followed to become a better team player.
1. Be responsible: When the opportunity arises, take up responsibilities that are outside the scope of your current role. Show people you are willing to work hard and learn more.
2. Coach: If you are good at something, coach or train another person on it. Giving out knowledge only enhances it, never reduces.
3. Be open: Encourage free thinking and discussion. Never discount or ridicule other’s ideas. Also, take each team-member seriously, never making assumptions about someone’s ignorance or knowledge.
4. Be generous: Give credit where it is due, never take credit for what is not your work. Never hold back on a compliment.
5. Build relationships: To forge relationships, have a friendly disposition. Do not ever someone behind his or her back, and do never gossip.
I won’t try to convince you that it is easy to work in a group, because it is really not. Some will find it easier than others. But the importance here is to realize the effectiveness that teams could bring. If you don’t consider yourself a good team player, perhaps you could try at least working with other people. You may end up discovering a new enjoyable way to work.