Do you prefer to work on your own or in a team? This is one of the questions that you may be asked in an interview. Why? For one simple reason: in the business world it is widely believed that team work increases productivity, which benefits firms and, as a result, means that recruitment managers value very positively candidates’ ability to work in a team.
While there are undoubtedly certain disadvantages with this way of working, there are also many advantages which make it worth trying. These include the following:
It favours creativity and learning:Thanks to the different points of view of others, creative solutions may be proposed. In addition, teamwork helps to share knowledge and stimulate learning.
It reduces stress: Teamwork makes it possible to share out tasks and responsibilities, thereby reducing stress when compared to working alone.
It improves performance: Working with other people means that you do not have to worry about tasks that you have not mastered because it is likely that someone else in the group has the relevant “know how”.
Given all of the above, OIE suggests five key points for you to remember when you work in a team:
- This is the basic element for working in a team. It is fundamental that team members trust each other and their abilities.
- For the team to work there must be adequate communication channels. It is essential to coordinate everybody’s tasks and that there are no misunderstandings.
- You must be responsible for your tasks. Do not try to avoid them or pass them on to somebody else. You have to be clear that the team will function if you all take responsibility for your work.
- The fact that there are individuals with different interests and different personalities enriches the group. If the team is successful, this will be as a result of the talents of all of its members.
- A lack of coordination will cause everyone’s work to fail. The team leader must take responsibility for adequately coordinating the work to avoid duplication or certain tasks being left undone.
Always remember that the importance of teamwork is related to co-existence, understanding, tolerance, respect for others and, of course, making the most of ideas which, if they were developed by just one person, would not be the same.
And don’t forget that when you work in a team, your success is shared by everyone!