NCI Legacy Series Blog Posts
In memory of those who came before, we bring you some of their best posts and articles from the past. Nita Brooks, who lost her battle with cancer 2016, was an integral part of the National Comfort Institute team for many years and was prolific in her writing. This post is one of those articles.
Do you have lots of turnover in your company?
You may not even know why employees don’t seem to stay for very long or choose to work elsewhere. Take a close look at how all the performers on the team are recognized… not just the star players. You may lose employees who never get recognition for their contributions to the team’s success.
Look around you… if egos are more evident in your company than are the hearts of loyal employees, you may need to begin working on a culture of teamwork.
That’s not an easy task to take on. When you think about it, from the very first moment of school, we learn that individual performance is what gets you ahead. After all, in school you are tested and graded on individual performance alone. You learn that sharing your work with others is “cheating.” It only makes sense that upon entering the work world you would believe hoarding information is the acceptable standard.
To change that line of thinking within your company takes great commitment and dedication.
Leaders must communicate clearly that teamwork and collaboration with the team expected as a condition of employment. From the very first moment you consider forming a team, share written core values with members, including what it means to be a team player. Include your expectations for employees. Then hold others accountable for the behaviors that represent those values.
Recognition should start at the bottom. Every person, from entry level positions to top management, must feel their contribution is just as important as anyone else on the team.
The group is the team and together can accomplish more.
“None of us is as good as all of us” should be believed and trusted by all. That trust starts with watching the leaders. Those who are more concerned about control (the hoarding information mentality) than sharing information and working together to reach common goals will bring the team down. Ignoring bad behavior has the same effect as approval and will destroy trust.
“If you don’t know where you’re going, any road will get you there.” – Lewis Carroll
Sharing information with the team begins with leaders sharing the dream of where the company is headed. Every person on the team must buy in to that future and the mission that defines the path. Indeed, the vision of that dream should create excitement and enthusiasm within the team to be sharing a part of creating the future.
In the right atmosphere, competition is healthy to motivate individuals among the team, especially with most technicians. But beware of the risk of overlooking the importance of the advancement of the team as a harmonious unit.
Performance is important, but …
Don’t misunderstand, it is important to recognize and reward star performance, but do it in such a way that you include acknowledging the team that helped individuals reach those goals. One person cannot do it alone. Compensation and rewards should be as dependent on collaborative practices as they are on individual contributions and achievements.
When addressing areas that need improvement don’t make blame a part of the company culture; it will create an environment of fear. Instead, focus on a team effort of identifying opportunity areas. That unit, when bonded together as a team, is what will help you reach sustainable goals, build strengths in your company, and solve potential problems.
When the team works together to solve problems and agrees on how to deliver solutions, they all become stronger and more receptive to each other’s needs. Teamwork helps solve issues by inviting contributions of each unique perspective, creating better decisions, better products and more effective services. In a positive teamwork environment, the group values collaboration within the group – people understand and believe that thinking, planning, decisions and actions are better for everyone when done cooperatively.
Make your dream work with teamwork.