In modern day, you are expected to work as a group whether at work or school. You may be required to work together in preparing a presentation, collecting data or even technical projects like developing a website. In order to produce quality work as a group, you must learn how to work productively as a team. Below are a few recommendations to help you work well with others:
Understand why teamwork is important
Most students assume that teachers assign work to groups because they don’t want to mark individual assignments or lack materials to teach. This is never the case. Groups are important because they train students on how to work with others even though they don’t know or may not like their group members. At the workplace, you will meet coworkers who have different views, skills and capabilities but your employer will still require you to work as a team.
Understand your responsibility as a member of the group
In groups, there are individual goals as well as group goals. Sometimes a challenge occurs when team members do not know how to focus on the group goals as opposed to individual goals and priorities. Every member of the group must be given a fair share of work that needs to get done. If there are disagreements, they need to be able to manage them constructively.
Get to know each other
In order for group members to have a sense of identity, they need to at least get to know each other. This really helps to foster commitment among group members. Simple things like choosing a unique group name or coming up with a slogan can help to unify the members and give them a sense of identity.
Form groups wisely
Working in groups with people who you already have established a good relationship with can have its pros and cons. For one, you are likely going to enjoy working together because you get along with everyone. However, research has shown that most groups like these don’t always get a lot done. Allow for groups that will enable you to reach the main goal of working together in the first place.
Decide who does what
Assigning group members goals always works. When you start off, you are likely to know what functions are needed and who can fill those roles. As soon as you can decide who does what, you are able to get a lot more done. In fact, it would be better when members have to report on who did what in the group at the end of the project.
It’s important for group members to meet from time to time in order to decide who does what or see how far the work has been done. It’s important to have an agenda before any meeting. It allows you to stay on course and get to discuss the most important things to progress the work. Everyone should be given an opportunity to share their contribution. Remember that no one is born knowing how to work together as a group. Fortunately, this is something we can all learn.
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