GT 1000 Team & Teamwork Guide
Leading, Managing, and Performing in Teams:
Critical Skills for Success
Working in teams and developing your collaboration skills is a key part of a successful
Improving your ability to work well with others not
only makes working in team projects more enjoyable but it helps you to develop a portfolio of
leadership skills that organizations value highly and actively seek out.
In reality, it is not a
question of whether you enjoy working in teams (as if you had a choice), but one of how
skillfully you will be able to do so.
All of us have probably experienced both the frustrations and the joys that can happen in
working on teams.
This, too, really shouldn’t surprise us since teams are typically
implemented with little thought to formal training in teamwork skills and the practices that
can make them more effective.
Without appropriate guidance, team potential can easily
disappear amidst a degenerative spiral of lack of understanding, lack of trust, destructive
conflict, missed deadlines, blaming, etc.
As you might already guess, we strongly believe that it is possible to improve one’s
collaborative skills through training and hard work.
Think about teamwork as a sport.
do you become an expert (or at least a skilled practitioner) in teamwork?
In brief, you learn
how to best play the sport, compare that to how you currently play the sport, and then
incorporate the better techniques into one’s repertoire.
You keep rehearsing and practicing
until doing things the “new” way feels as comfortable to you as your “old” ways did.
Changing the way we do things can be a difficult task, particularly if we’ve been successful in
However, past success and intuition cultivated through experience in particular
situations and conditions do not guarantee success in new and different situations.
words, you need to be open to examining the ways you have always done things, trying new
techniques, and improving your skill set.
This guide is designed to offer you some guidance concerning teamwork and what we believe
are good practices for you to get familiar with and integrated into your repertoire of skills.
There are several sections of suggestions that follow.
Perhaps the most important and longest
is the last section (Getting Your Team Started) since it is really designed for a new team to
step through at its very first meeting.
We urge you to put that section to use for each team
that you startup.
The issues covered encompass many positive suggestions about team
process, norms, roles, etc. that can help you establish a positive and unambiguous tone for
In the sections to follow, we also offer a number of suggestions that we think will help you