TEAMWORK - what does it really mean?
October 31, 2017
On October 18th, 2017 Kilmarnock managers came together to plan for our 2018 priorities. Before the meeting broke into brainstorming groups, we spoke at length about TEAMWORK and how important it is to the ongoing success of our company.
Further to the dictionary definition of TEAMWORK…
“cooperative or coordinated effort on the part of a group of persons acting together as a team in the interests of a common cause” …
We have come to understand that at Kilmarnock Enterprise TEAMWORK is one of our single biggest competitive advantages. We have also recognized that teamwork is essential when taking on new challenges and performing strategic tasks.
We know that when teams work really well together they do the following:
- Commitment and Trust – Each team member devotes a reasonable amount of time and energy to advance the team’s mission and each team member trusts that all other team members are doing the same. In the words of Patrick Lencioni who wrote the book, “The Five Dysfunctions of a Team”, vulnerability-based trust is predicated on the simple – and practical – idea that people who aren’t afraid to admit the truth about themselves are not going to engage in the kind of political behavior that wastes everyone’s time and energy, and more important, makes the accomplishments of results an unlikely scenario.”
- Communication – Effective teams have open lines of communication where communication is honest and flows between team members equally. Team members who understand each other’s unique communication styles are never hesitant to communicate with each other about issues and concerns as well as new ideas or personal observations. Teams who agree on a single style of communication from the outset are more likely to move the entire team in a productive direction that everyone understands and supports.
- Diversity of Capabilities – at Kilmarnock Enterprise we have a wide range of professional competencies that allow us to be more fully equipped to meet a wide range of challenges. Each team member possesses unique specialties and trusting each other for certain aspects of performance while fully understanding their own contribution leads to high powered teams.
- Adaptability – In today’s fast changing environment, high functioning teams understand that they must be flexible and adaptable to changing conditions. Team strategies, goals, tasks, workflows and even members can change over the life of the team. This is when team members should be able to rally together and meet new challenges head-on, rather than splintering into idealogical factions or banding together to resist change. Change is an unavoidable part of modern business, and the most effective teams have the ability to roll with the punches and change the way they work together on the fly.
- Creative Freedom (Autonomy) – All team members should feel free to think creatively – to try new things and fail without fear of consequences. Team members must trust that others will listen openly to their ideas, they must be able to confidently and openly communicate their new ideas, they must be trusted enough in their area of expertise to lead the way in new initiatives, and they must be adaptable enough to accommodate the changes inherent in bringing new ideas to realization. (F.A.I.L = First Attempt at Learning).
- Care – At Kilmarnock Enterprise, we have come to understand that after 20 years in business, caring really does promote caring. That is why we have a very specific mission statement that includes the statement “in a family atmosphere”. Highly functioning team members understand that they have each other’s back and that they care for one another on all dimensions – head, heart and soul. This references back to our TRIP values as well – trust, respect, integrity and professional.