How to be an Effective Team Player


A lot of problems in the workplace are caused by a breakdown in teamwork. We all want to be great teammates, but sometimes we lose focus on what that really means. An effective team player is someone who puts aside his or her personal goals, works well with others, collaborates with team members and ultimately delivers what their clients need with shared responsibility and also earns their goodwill and trust.

While there are several qualities that make up an effective team player, there are some traits that stick out:

  • Supportive. A great team supports each other's skills and each other. It is all about collaboration, not competition.
  • Honesty. Be honest, and always fair, with your team in the good and not-so-good times. Remember, constructive criticism is there to help you and your team members grow.
  • Reliable. As marketers, we have to be on top of several different things at once. Meeting deadlines and the expectations of your clients, and your team members show that you can be relied upon to get the job done.
  • Positive attitude. It’s easy to take the glass half empty approach, but more difficult to always be positive. Think positive, be positive and great things will happen.
  • Participates actively. Attending a meeting is more than just listening. Participate in all discussions and day-to-day activities.
  • Communicates well with teammates. We are communicators and communicate for a living, so we should know how to properly communicate with our colleagues.    
  • Adaptable. In a fast-paced office setting, things are not always going to be the same day-over-day. Do one thing at a time and remember to be flexible.
  • Disciplined. The more disciplined you become, the easier life gets.

Sports teams are perfect examples of how working together can lead to much more than one player acting by themselves. Remember, there is no “I” in team! Everyone on a team plays a role according to their strengths and by helping those around them with encouragement. Don’t look at teamwork as a challenge, but as an opportunity.