Team player. It’s an HR buzzword. Everybody talks about it. Everybody expects it. But what exactly does it mean?
There are many opinions and ideas on what makes a team player, but most everyone agrees, these six traits are essential to the title.
Reliability: A team player shows that he or she is consistent and trustworthy. They show up on time. They do what they say they’re going to do. They meet their deadlines. They come prepared for meetings. You can count on them to deliver — especially in a pinch.
It does not mean that they are a “yes man,” though. They understand workflow and have a good sense of boundaries. They know when it is time to speak up, and when to be quiet. Meaning you can also count on them to let you know if something is not working right.
Clear Communication: We talk a lot about good communication around here. If it seems like overkill, it isn’t. Good communication is essential for a team to thrive. And it starts with everyone. Communicating well means –
- Speaking truthfully.
- Being positive and encouraging, but also honest.
- Giving all the necessary information regarding projects and plans.
- Knowing what is too much, or unnecessary information.
- Being direct and unambiguous.
It is important to note that a big part of communication includes voice tone, body, and facial language, and listening to what the other has to say.
Flexibility: A good team player is flexible. It doesn’t mean they blow with the wind, but that they adapt. Every work environment encounters sudden changes from time to time. For some businesses, it’s a regular thing. Team players don’t complain but find ways to acclimate. A flexible team player understands that different people with different backgrounds have different perspectives, causing them to look at the same situation –differently. It is particularly helpful when group decisions must be made.
Committed Involvement: A good team player is actively involved and committed to the company. They don’t sit on the sidelines but contribute to the effort. They know what needs to be done and take the initiative to fill in the gaps. It often means they do things not matching their job description, but the team player buckles down and gets it done anyway.
No Self-Promotion: A good team player is self-confident and well-versed in their role. But this does not mean they are a know-it-all. A good team player is humble — and their focus is on the team and the common agenda of an ultimate, collaborative, end goal,
rather than self-promotion. They support others, celebrate their co-worker’s success, and don’t feel the need to vie for recognition.
Relational: Team players recognize each other as their work family and build relationships. A good team player is empathetic, interested, and encouraging. And while not everyone is a bubbly-let’s-get-together-for-coffee sort of person, they do make an effort to be friends.
At Hamilton Connections, we believe in good teams. After all, we help build them. If you’re looking for help in building a team in your company, call us today! We make it easy on you, and everyone else, by placing the right people with the right people.
We look forward to creating your team together!