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Are you a good team player?

June 1st, 2015

Being a good team member

We often look at others when things do not go as planned.  Often the cause of the issue can be within our own control.  Before we ask ourselves if we are being a good team player we need to know what this looks like.  To me, it is a simple combination of the following things:

  1. Positive attitude
  2. Being proactive
  3. Tolerance
  4. Collaboration

Positive attitude

Whether or not you know it, your attitude will reflect in your mood and behaviours.  When unhappy  your colleagues will know and can potentially demotivate and lessen team effectiveness.  Being positive will motivate and ensure you and your team members enjoy work whilst making good progress.

  • Focus on the good aspects of team working.
  • Learn from mistakes and do not dwell on them.
  • Forgive others and their mistakes, do not hold a grudge.
  • See the good in others and hold on to that.

Being Proactive

Are you the sort of person to let the waves of turmoil throw you around in the work place? If so, take charge, be proactive and not reactive!  Being proactive will enable you to anticipate and prepare, thus giving you and your team an advantage over others that wait for things to happen.

  • Identify opportunities and threats, search for potential problems, errors and issues
  • Raise the issue with the team as soon as possible and if you can, offer a solution at the time of raising the issue.


Teams can spend a lot of time, energy and effort in fighting themselves. Sometimes this can be as a result of believing so strongly in one course of action that all others are disregarded, others it can be as a result of simple intolerance.  Either way, this can lead to disharmony and stagnation within the team.  To avoid this ensure that you:

  • Offer suggestions with qualifiers such as, ” I see this as a solution ” or “We could try”.
  • Limit judgmental language.  You should be replaced by we.
  • Do not nit-pick.


A high performing team works in a cooperative manner, supporting each other and getting the very best from each other.  The opposite occurs where individuals fail to share information and ideas as errors can happen as a result of incorrect information.

To ensure you are collaborating it is important that you:

  • Share information or ideas as soon as you have them.
  • Accept work with grace.
  • Put your team ahead of yourself where not harmful to your wellbeing.
  • Recognise when someone else may be the better person for the job.
  • Give praise where praise is due.

The above is just the beginning of becoming a good team member.  Start off with this and you will soon see the benefits!

When a team is not working at its best, ask questions of yourself first!  Remember, when you point a finger, there are three pointing back at you!







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