Improving education and learning for all

You are here

  1. Home
  2. Develop
  3. My Skills
  4. Team working

Team working

a meeting of nursesWhat is team working?

A team comprises a group of people linked in a common purpose. Teams are especially appropriate for conducting tasks that are high in complexity and have many interdependent subtasks. Teams maybe interdependent such as football teams and work for a common cause for example, in business, as a project team.

Why is it important to consider team working?

In many work situations people will meet and work as teams. Team members may be chosen or even self-appointed. They may work together for longer or shorter time periods. Teamwork should promote and facilitate member interaction. Teamwork can lead to better decisions, products, or services.

The quality of teamwork may be measured by analyzing six components of collaboration among team members:

  1. communication
  2. coordination
  3. balance of member contributions
  4. mutual support
  5. effort
  6. cohesion.

How can we create more effective teams?

  • Problem solving – Collaborating to come up with, hone and develop solutions is a great strength of working in teams. Each team member has a responsibility to contribute equally and offer their unique perspective on a problem to arrive at the best possible solution.
  • Accomplish tasks faster – As one person taking on multiple tasks you will not be able to perform at a same pace as a team can. When people work together they can complete tasks faster by dividing the work to people of different abilities and knowledge.
  • Healthy competition – You can use healthy competition in groups can be used to motivate individuals and help the team excel.
  • Developing relationships – A team that continues to work together will eventually develop an increased level of bonding. This can help you avoid unnecessary conflicts since they have become well acquainted with each other through team work. Try to ensure communication at all times.
  • Everyone has unique qualities – Every team member can offer their unique knowledge and ability to help improve other team members. Through teamwork the sharing of these qualities will allow you as a team member to be more productive in the future. Appreciate your own and others qualities and differences.

Learn more about team working

The Open University has a range of Open Learn materials which cover Team Working and other areas. You might be interested to look at these free units:

Further information on team working

Watch a video that inspires colleagues to work towards a common goal, see What if we.