Although it may not be possible to achieve the perfect workplace team, your firm can put forth effort to match colleagues in a manner that promotes open dialogue and innovative collaborations. By utilizing in-house research, surveys, personality tests and criteria for each team project, you may be able to develop a team that thrives while also offering your employees a satisfying experience on the job.
Do the Research
To effectively match team members, spend time getting to know your employees' work styles, likes and dislikes on the job. Distribute surveys that prompt your staff to answer honestly about their experience with workplace teams. Administer personality tests to see how each team member reacts to stress, handles challenges and prefers to complete tasks. Develop a research model similar to the one Google uses that involves analyzing how employees socialize in and out of the office to better match personalities on teams. This type of model creates a culture of "psychological safety" according to the Wall Street Journal. For example, when employees feel psychologically safe, they are more prone to honestly share their concerns, ideas and thoughts when brainstorming or collaborating with others.
Focus on Motivation
A successful workplace team is often motivated by the same means. In fact, the Saberr consulting firm reported that companies should strive to pair together team members who are motivated by the same thing. When employees are motivated by similar or identical values, it is often easier to establish goals collectively. If values differ, it is likely the result could include friction between team members who begin to pull the group in different directions, thus negatively impacting both productivity and profits.
Evaluate Communication Methods
Since communication is often at the heart of a successful workplace team, consider your employees' preferred method of correspondence before forming teams. If you have one employee who prefers to solely communicate via email, he may not be on board or as accepting of other methods of communication, such as instant messaging, text messaging or video conferencing. As a result, you may find the team struggles with communication as a whole.
Set Clear Expectations
When forming a workplace team, establish a specific goal and markers for success before work begins. Make it known that all members of the team are expected to contribute to the project as a whole as well as goal-setting sessions. Encourage each member to become engaged in all discussions, which leads to equal face time for each employee. Primarily, though, establish a forum to encourage a diverse range of ideas.
Even with the most cohesive workplace team, companies must expect some challenges. When forming teams, improve how your teams communicate and engage with each other respectfully by identifying individuals who have similar goals and values.
Photo Courtesy of nenetus at FreeDigitalPhotos.net