03 Jan The 10 Characteristics of a High- Performance Work Team Member
“Individual commitment to a group effort – that’s what makes a team work, a company work, a society work, a civilization work.” Vince Lombardi
As a Work Performance Coach, I assist individuals, ranging from CEOs to Front Line Leaders, in improving their skill sets and performance by focusing on what it takes to be a Member of a High-Performance Work Team. Through 20 years of coaching Team Members to improve their performance, the performance of the Team and of the entire organization, I have established 10 characteristics Members of a work group must have for that work group to become a High-Performance Work Team.
However, before examining those 10 characteristics, the definition of a High-Performance Work Team and its importance to an organization needs to be examined:
What is a High-Performance Work Team?
As defined in The Wisdom of Teams: Creating the High-Performance Organization, by Katzenbach and Smith, a common definition of a work group is “a small number of people with complementary skills who are committed in a common purpose, performance goals, and approach for which they hold themselves mutually accountable.” In today’s work environment, work groups are essential to an organization’s success and nearly every employee is a member of a work group.
But a High-Performance Work Team is more than a group of employees working together. It is Team Members who
- Share common goals,
- Are committed to the Team,
- Support other Team Members,
- Understand and fulfills their role on the Team,
- Pursues performance excellence by continuously working with other Team Members to become more efficient and effective, and
- Holds themselves and other Team Members accountable for superior results.
Why are High-Performance Work Teams so important?
Because High-Performance Work Teams provide organizations with a significant competitive advantage in the marketplace by
- making better decisions,
- implementing decisions and plans more quickly,
- doing better quality work and
- are up to 50% more productivity then average work teams, resulting in superior performance,
The 10 Characteristics of a Member of a High-Performance Work Team
Now that we understand what High-Performance Work Teams are and why they are so important to an organization’s success, let’s examine the essential characteristics of the Members of a High-Performance Work Team:
- They have a strong work ethic that is focused on results.
- They respect and trust other Team Members.
- They understand what the Team must achieve are committed to the success of the Team.
- They understand their role on the Team, know how to do their jobs and constantly improve their skill set.
- They provide support to other Team Members.
- They maintain open communication with other Team Members and immediately address issues openly and honestly.
- They seek feedback about how they’re doing.
- They identify and solve problems together.
- They hold themselves and other Team Members accountable and do not tolerate mediocracy.
10.They celebrate individual and Team success.
The Bottom Line: After 20 years as a Work Performance Coach, I can unequivocally state High-Performance Work Teams are the foundation of a successful organization. While developing High-Performance Work Team Members is an effort that requires serious investments of time, energy and resources failure to make that investment ultimately means the failure of the organization.