What does it take to be a team? Just because you meet with or work with the same people on a regular basis does not mean you are a team. Can you transform a group into a team? Certain conditions must exist. Here are the primary requirements:
- A team needs a reason to be together. A common goal, project, or plan that requires forward movement and results.
- Team members need to be committed to working with each other to achieve the goal(s). This also means being able to cooperate and put aside personal agendas for the good of the team and its goals.
- All members need to contribute and be accountable. This does not mean they are all alike or contribute equally. However, it does mean that members are actively a part of achieving the goals established.
- Change and continuous improvement are what teamwork is all about. Stagnate, do nothing and the team will cease to exist.
- Leadership. This is the person or persons who will keep the team together, focused and moving forward. It is not a dictator so much as a facilitator and person who will insure that everyone is communicating and on the same page. It is the person who will gather results, help the team to analyze them, make adjustments and incorporate them into future plans.
- Time. More teams fall apart because people could not find the time to make it work. They did not see that the long run benefits were worth the time commitment.