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Home Centennial College Blog 2014 March 04 How to work well with others: Part III

How to work well with others: Part III

occupational Therapist Assistant and Physiotherapist Assistant students discuss their class lesson in a classroom at Morningside campus

By respecting others, you are able to accept their opinions and can have better communication. However, there are ways to improve your people skills, especially when working in a team. In this third and final part of the series, we’ll take a look at a solid process and a more casual one that will help with your interaction with teammates.

Establish a team charter

Knowing your role and responsibilities as well as those of your team members will help everyone realize the importance of each other’s work. From the moment your team is formed, define the purpose of your team and lay down some ground rules.  This can be done using a team charter, a document used for project management for the purpose of giving direction to a team by identifying the scope of the project, its goals and the deliverable required to complete it.

Elect a team leader and establish team roles. Outline the tasks with a detailed timeline, including due dates and the owner of each task. Whether you do an official team charter and sign it like a contract, it is advisable to do a similar one to organize your team and the work. By having structure, the team will have direction and can function easily as a whole.

Be social

You don’t have to become a social butterfly or force yourself to like everyone in the room, but finding a common ground with your teammates will help break any tension or stress. Talk with your teammates about other things not related to your work. You don’t need to talk about a serious issue or meet up frequently, but find a connection with your teammates through similar interests and hobbies. If your team decides to go out for a coffee, join them and have small talks. This bonding experience may make you closer with your team members, which could lead team harmony, better team dynamics, and more productivity. Most of all, you just made some new connections, so working with the same people should be easier in the future.

There are more ways that will help you work with other people, but listed in this series are five major ones you should consider. Every team and situation is different so you will have to make a good judgment on what to do and what not to do. Keep the basics in mind and be respectful, communicate professionally even if there is an argument, and connect with your team members officially and possibly as part of a social circle.