All project teams are different but there are some aspects of them which you will find repeated in one successful team after another. Here are 10 of the top characteristics to try and get into your team.
Respect Each Other
Respect is such a vital thing in any type of team setting that it is only right that we start off with this point. You might be the project leader but everyone else in the team deserves your respect as much as you deserve theirs. Respect in this type of team setting means many things, from considering each other’s opinions to not talking badly about colleagues behind their backs. Respect within the project team is vital and if you see any signs that this is missing then that getting it back has got to be one of your first tasks.
I love working in teams where it is easy to get a debate going. Maybe you have an issue you aren’t sure about and want to use your team as a sounding board for fresh ideas, for example. If you know that you are likely to get some interesting points of view back then it can make it a pleasure to throw ideas out to the team and see what they come back to you with. If your team members are less keen to open their mouths and get involved then this doesn’t make them a bad team, just one which isn’t used to debates yet.
Work to the Objectives
Does everyone in your team know what the objectives are? If they don’t then now is a good time to let them know. Everyone works better when they know what they are aiming for so you should make this one of your primary tasks.
Know the Roles
There are many different tasks which need carried out on any project and you will to nail down each person’s role early on. This doesn’t mean that you can’t switch things around later on but you should look to feel comfortable that everyone is aware of what they need to do at any given time.
A Range of Skills and Experience
The first time I worked in a project team I was delighted to find such a broad mix of workers. In other types of work it is common to find that teams are made up of similar types of people with similar backgrounds. In projects this isn’t usually the case and it is up to the project leader to blend them all together into a successful team. This diversity of skills and knowledge can be a hugely important factor in how well the team works.
A Strong Leader
The project manager has a difficult role to play and how he or she manages it will have a big effect on the performance of the team. A project leader who knows how to run their team and how to get things done is one of the factors which make effective project teams tick over.
A Can Do Atmosphere
One of the bad things about working in team is that it only takes one or two negative members of the team to get everyone feeling downbeat. If you want your people to get things done then you need to find a way of getting a can do attitude instilled in them. If you have a powerful personality you might try doing this yourself but otherwise you could consider professional training courses for them.
If one team member is struggling it seems only fair that someone else nips in to help them out. Sadly this kind of teamwork isn’t always present though. The personality of the project leader can go a long way to making sure that everyone helps out at much as possible.
We have already looked at a couple of types of communication but it is also well worth a point of its own. A team which doesn’t communicate isn’t going to succeed in very much at all. A communication method needs to be in place for all of the relevant information to be passed to the right people at the right time.
The project manager might run the show but everyone else needs to buy into it as well. This is easier done on some projects than others, as some are clearly exciting at first glance. The lack of a team buy in is one of the most serious problems for any piece of work.