Latest Tips for Team Building

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Building a team to work together can be difficult. For a group of individuals to unify for one purpose, and to represent one unit, the team must be designed from the ground up. Team chemistry takes time to build, but once a team is in full cooperation, it can accomplish far more than just a mere individual. Here are some tips on team development and how you can design an effective, hard-working team.

The Team Must Have Objectives

Goals for the team must be designed so that the entire team understands what it is they are trying to accomplish. Being clear and thoroughly explaining objectives is important so that each and every team member, as well as the coach, is on the same page. Make sure that each goal is accurately measured to be achievable. Many coaches make the mistake of putting an unachievable goal for their team to be “perfect.” If the players know they have to work together effectively to accomplish something, there is less room for individuals trying to achieve the goal alone. Design a goal to be directly proportional to the effectiveness of the entire group all coming together. Objectives should be able to be accomplished in a timely manner. The team should be able to positively affect the present rather than always looking to change the future.

Establish Roles for Your Team Members

What knowledge or skill set is needed for each team objective? What combination of expertise is needed to achieve the overall goal or purpose of the group? Determine the ingredients you will need to get the job done right the first time. Listing all the requirements for the fulfillment of a goal or objective will determine an individual team member’s role. The key is to play your team to its strengths. If one player is particularly skilled in a certain job, it is essentially the coaches’ job to determine how each player can help the team. Simply asking a team member what he or she is good at is not the most effective way of finding potential. Preparing sample scenarios or tests is a great way to determine a player’s role. Roles should only be given to those who are dedicated to the team. There are several exercises that will show a player’s true commitment to the goal or objective.

Assign a Leader

Though every member holds significant value to a team, there will need to be leaders that keep the pieces together. These leaders do not look for personal success but rather lookout for the benefit of the team as a whole. Leaders are willing to step up and take responsibility, even if that means being the scapegoat to blame. Your leader will understand the true purpose of the team more than any other team member. It is the leader’s job to keep his or her fellow teammates in check while remaining equal in the eyes of the team. You need to select a leader early within the confinements of time-based on your team’s goals. Leaders are not only authoritative to keep others in check, but they are charismatic and encouraging to the teammates around them. The entire team should respect and look up to a leader as a role model. As a consensus, the team needs to help in selecting its leader. All players or team members must see the leader in the same light. Selecting the right leader is important and can usually tip the balance of the team to either success or failure.

Build Individual Relationships

The team works as a family, and a family can understand and relate to one another. You should get to know each one of your players before starting a journey towards a goal. Trust is one of the most important factors when designing a team. Each player should trust the person next to them because success or failure is tied to the entire group. Players should also become close to one another. Team bonding is vitally important to furthering the progression of the team.

Facilitate Open Communication

Each and every member of a team needs to have a voice. Although leaders are important, all team members need to feel comfortable communicating with his or her teammates. Providing a designed way of communication that is both effective and fair to all your team members is crucial when trying to positively grow as a unit. If one player or member fails to communicate possible confusion about a task, then the entire team will suffer. A team is only as strong as its weakest player, so having a high-quality level of communication will prove to be greatly advantageous to team building. Whether it is a hand raise system or a designated time for questions or comments, you should encourage team members to speak up and voice their opinions. Over-communication does not exist when building a successful team.

Organize Team Meetings

Time incremented meetings are necessary for successful collaboration. Meetings can be both in person, on a designed chat page, or an online video meeting such as Skype or Ventrilo. Continuing to positively reiterate certain objectives or purposes within a meeting will keep your team on track to accomplishing designated goals. Pointing out both examples of failure and success in team meetings is important in helping the team learn how to model their actions. Demonstrating the correct way after giving the reason for why a specific team member or the entire team failed to accomplish an objective is crucially important in helping team progress. Identifying the problem is only a small part of reaching the solution.

Team Organization

More often than not, there will be far more valuable players than others. Though team leaders are essential, each and every member needs to feel valuable toward a team goal or purpose. The organization of a player’s role will create a more systematic team. After all, your team needs to work as a well-oiled machine, with each moving part being just as essential as the next. Within meetings, every player should have a voice on solving the problem. However, a systematic way to agree or disagree should be created to avoid wasting time on a particular subject. Voting is a great way for a team to make an organized decision. Also, providing an outlet to assist players in their roles is important. Assistant coaches, trainers, and staff that is dedicated to helping players push forward in the next steps that they need to take.

Analyze Your Team’s Performance

Often, a coach will allow a goal or objective to fade after highly advocating purpose from the start. Staying up to date through reports and team meetings develop a habitual want to keep the eye on the prize. Member or team players should be congratulated on successful achievements regularly. Performance should be constantly monitored to point out problems, and the solutions to those problems. If a member is not up to par, aim for constructive criticism so the player can learn from his or her mistakes.

Though these are just some helpful tips on building a team, following these concepts will prove that a team working well together can accomplish anything.

Learn more about earning your online Master of Athletic Administration from Ohio University.


UCSF, “Chapter 14 Team Building”
Management, “Team Building”
Fresh Tracks, “Free team building activities”