Introduction to Teamwork

When teams work well, individuals feel that their contributions are valued, morale increases and members feel that they are part of something that is worthwhile. An effective and efficient team is a win-win situation for all. So do you work well in teams? What has been your experience? How do you contribute towards a team? These are some of the questions that you should consider when thinking about yourself as a team player. Let’s examine the various aspects of team work so that you can reflect on your role and participation in teams.

"Coming together is a beginning. Keeping together is progress. Working together is success” —Henry Ford

Defining Teams, Teamwork and Team Player

Team: “A group of people with different skills and different tasks, who work together on a common project, service, or goal, with a meshing of functions and mutual support.” – Washington.edu

 

Teamwork: “Teamwork is generally understood as the willingness of a group of people to work together to achieve a common aim. For example we often use the phrase:” he or she is a good team player”. This means someone has the interests of the team at heart, working for the good of the team.” – the-happy-manager.com

 

Team player: “Someone who puts aside his personal goals and works well with others, doing what he needs to do to strive for a common goal.” – yourdictionary.com

 

"One piece of log creates a small fire, adequate to warm you up, add just a few more pieces to blast an immense bonfire, large enough to warm up your entire circle of friends; needless to say that individuality counts but team work dynamites” —Jin Kwon

Teamwork Vocabulary, Expressions, Idioms

  • To touch base with someone: to communicate, to talk, to confer with someone.
  • To gel with someone: when you get along with someone or you feel a connection with them.
  • Teaming:  “the activity of working together as a team: Virtual teaming is a concept that brings the advantages of teamwork to people who need to work in different locations.” – Cambridge Business English Dictionary 
  • To bounce ideas off of someone: to share an idea with someone in order to get their opinion – englishtown.com.
  • To take one for the team: to make a sacrifice on behalf of the group – thefreedictionary.com.
  • To team up with someone: to join another person or group to achieve something.
  • To be up against someone or something: to be opposed to somebody or something – thefreedictionary.com.
  • A wide array of skills: a great variety of skills.

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