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3 Keys to Building an Effective Team

“Individual commitment to a group effort–that is what makes a team work, a company work, a society work, a civilization work.” –Vince Lombard

 

The importance of teamwork today is something that cannot be overstated. Teams exist in a broad spectrum of environments. You will find teams functioning in business whether working remotely or in an office setting, in community-based organizations, church groups, social groups, non-profits and more. The ability for individuals to work effectively in, and as, a team is an indispensable skill. The key word here is effective, because not every team is always effective.

What goes into building an effective team? In terms of this post, an effective team is defined as one that is able to deliver the desired results within the allocated amount of time. There are three things I consider essential to building an effective team. Of course, there are others, but these three I think are critical for building an effective team.

Commitment to a Common Purpose

It is important that everyone fully understands why the team exists. They must be passionate about and committed to the project being undertaken. They must be clear on what it is the team intends to accomplish, and by when they intend to accomplish it. There are no surprises and no hidden agendas. This is at the foundation of an effective team.

Shared Values

Something that is often overlooked in building effective teams is the personal values of the team members. It is very hard to commit to something that violates your personal values. Going through the process of determining your personal values is not something that everyone does, we all have them, but many times they are unconscious. Sometimes the reason why a team does not function effectively is because the personal values of one or more of the team members is being violated. A person who values freedom and creativity will have a hard time being part of a team where everything is structured and highly systematized. Determining if the members of the team have a value fit is important to the team’s effectiveness.

Complementary Skills

The third essential is ensuring the team has a complementary set of diverse skills. Each member understands why they are a part of the team, and what skills they bring to the project. The skill sets are complementary with each part contributing something of value. Ineffective teams happen because they often have one or two people carrying the load, which breeds stress, resentment, missed deliverables, and conflict in the team. Making sure that every member knows their role and has something of value to contribute makes for a more effective team.

These are the guidelines I use to decide if I am a good fit for a team or not. As noted, there is more to building an effective team than just the three elements mentioned here but remove any one of these and the effectiveness of the team can be severely hindered. Teamwork is here to stay, but not every team is a good fit. Make your choices wisely and be a part of something great.

 

The post 3 Keys to Building an Effective Team first appeared on Transformationtraining.net

 The views and opinions expressed in this post are those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of the Greater Paterson OIC, its Board of Directors, or any other group or individual affiliated.

Why Entrepreneurship Training Should be Included in Workforce Development

One of the most overlooked categories in Workforce Development, especially as it relates to low-income and underserved populations, is teaching the general principles of entrepreneurship. In this sector most services tend to lean towards employment training, adult basic education, English as a Second Language (ESL), along with standard job searching and resume development assistance.

These offerings are all needed and provide tremendous value. However, I believe in our current environment, and in light of the way the world of work is changing, entrepreneurship training should be added to the mix.

Many people, including those in these income brackets, have dreams of running their own business. This is not to say that after receiving training everyone is going to run out and start their own business.

Yes, it is entirely possible that it could happen for some, however, that is not the main reason for offering this training. Entrepreneurship training offers so much more in terms of the intangible “soft skills” that are integrated into the training. Having these skills would make those who may never start their own business much more attractive as employment candidates.

A good entrepreneurship training program would help participants develop essential skills – including but not limited to:

  • Decision-Making Skills
  • Increased Self-Awareness
  • Critical Thinking Skills
  • Time Management Skills
  • Leadership Skills
  • Problem Solving Skills
  • Innovation and Creativity Skills
  • Teamwork or Collaboration Skills
  • Financial Skills

These tools are critical for both the entrepreneur and the employee. If an individual is not interested in starting a business, possessing these skills along with an understanding of business in general makes them a far more attractive candidate for employment, and opens up a wider range of options for seeking employment.

Those who do desire to someday do their own thing will have a better understanding of business, and a firmer foundation on which to launch out and begin their endeavor.

We are in a new time. How work is being done has changed and these changes are here to stay. The “Gig” economy is growing, and an increasing number of people are seeking ways to generate additional revenue. Providing entrepreneurship to low-income and underserved populations will give them a fighting chance to participate in this new economy and this new world of work.

I am hoping that Workforce Investment Boards and County One-Stops will recognize the value for this type of training and add it to the mix of those services already being provided.

One can only hope.

The views and opinions expressed in this post are those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of the Greater Paterson OIC, its Board of Directors or any other group or individual affiliated.

Preparing for the Post-Pandemic World of Work

There are few people who would deny that the COVID19 pandemic has changed our lives in dramatic and profound ways. One of those changes in particular is in the employment sector. I am deeply saddened by the millions of people who have been forced to file for unemployment as a direct result of this pandemic.

As one who works in workforce development, this area is of great concern to me. One thing I feel very strongly about is that the post-pandemic world of work is going to change in dramatic ways, primarily in the telecommute space. The ways in which many businesses have had to adapt and change the way they do business along with the work from home explosion that this pandemic caused will have enduring effects on business and the workforce.

Remote collaboration services like Zoom, Microsoft Teams, and Slack to name a few already existed, however, their growth exploded exponentially after the pandemic hit, and they have now become regular tools in a wide variety of industries. The benefits of working from home are now being experienced by a wider number of employees and employers alike, and things will never be the same. Just a few of these benefits include but are not limited to:

  • Flexibility for employees leading to better employee satisfaction
  • Increased productivity
  • Cost savings in building expenses
  • Reduced absenteeism
  • Reduced use of gas and commuting fees
  • Benefits to the environment

I am convinced that after experiencing these benefits, more employees will request (and more companies will adapt) telecommuting aka, working from home as a standard way of operating. I seems the 3:2 (3 days home, 2 days on site) ratio is the sweet spot. Individuals entering the workforce will have to be prepared for this.

Low-income and underserved populations who often lack the tools and skills required for these changes need to be prepared for this. At the Greater Paterson OIC, we are adapting our workforce training programs to better prepare our students for this new world of work.

In addition to learning how to use the technology tools required for this new world, we are developing ways to build the “soft skills” that employers will be looking for. Some of the skills we think are important include:

  • Problem Solving
  • Creativity
  • Innovation
  • Critical Thinking
  • Business Literacy and Entrepreneurship
  • Technology Literacy
  • Time Management and Task Prioritization
  • Verbal and Written Communication Skills
  • Teamwork and Collaboration

We are excited about the challenges that lie before us in empowering our students to be ready to succeed in this new world in both their personal and professional lives. We all have to prepare ourselves for the new experiences and new ways of doing things. This is just one of the steps we are taking. I am certain that this is just the start. Adapt a growth mindset and get ready to roll.

Getting Interview Ready Men vs. Women

Men

  1. Dress appropriate for the position you are applying for.
  2. A fitted suit is always a safe option.
    • It shows that you are serious no matter the task of the business.
  3. Avoid loud colors.
    • Employers want to hear you, not your clothes.
  4. Don’t overuse your cologne.
    • Axe is not having an interview you are.
  5. A fresh haircut is a suggestion but not always necessary.
  6. Don’t smoke before an interview.
  7. A simple collar-shirt is also a good choice for a interview.
  8. Clean nails.
    • Even if the job doesn’t involve you working with your hands, clean nails are a must.
  9. Wear black socks that cover your ankles if you cross your legs.
  10. Casual jewelry.
    • A watch is fine, but earrings and expensive things should be worn after you get the job.
  11. If you don’t have an iron, hang your clothes in the bathroom while you take a steaming shower it will get all of the wrinkles.
  12. If you have a choice in when you like to interview pick a time around 10:30am.
    • The morning rush has slowed down and the employer is eager for lunch.
  13. Sit up straight.
  14. Try not to use too many hand motions.
  15. Smile big but not too big.
  16. Shake the employers hand firmly before the interview and after while thanking them for their time.
  17. To be a boss you have to dress like a boss!

Women

  1. Dress appropriate for the position you are applying for.
  2. A fitted suit is always a safe option.
    • A skirt or pants is suitable.
  3. Avoid loud colors.
    • Employers want to hear you, not your clothes.
  4. Don’t overuse your perfume.
    • Victoria’s secret perfume is not having an interview you are
  5. Hair should be pulled back or neatly done.
  6. Don’t smoke before an interview.
  7. Makeup should be a neutral shade.
    • Anything on your face that you have to question is not appropriate.
  8. Clean nails.
    • No bright colors or chipped polish.
  9. Heels should be below five inches.
    • No open toed heels or open back.
  10. Stocking hose should be your skin tone.
  11. Casual jewelry.
    • A necklace is fine, but earrings and expensive things can be worn after you get the job.
  12. If you don’t have an iron, spray your clothes with hair spray.
  13. If you have a choice in when you like to interview pick a time around 10:30am.
    • The morning rush has slowed down and the employer is eager for lunch.
  14. Sit up straight.
  15. Try not to use too many hand motion.
  16. Shake the employers hand firmly before the interview and after while thanking them for their time.
  17. To be a boss you have to dress like a boss!

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