When you find yourself working in a team where you feel excited, when you are challenged and energised by being part of that team, that is not a chance thing.
It’s like there is an incredible connection and bond between team members and things just work effortlessly and at times you may not even need to talk to get things done. And that bond shows in people’s behaviours and level of teamwork.
If that invisible bond isn’t there you need to create that thread between team members, and to share more is a great way of doing that, and start shaping the success you want as a team.
There can be numerous reasons why team members don’t generously share knowledge, skills or experience with each other, ranging from thinking in silos to fear of being ridiculed.
Unnecessary duplication of workload is a common outcome when team members don’t share. When information, knowledge, insights and experience are not shared it severely limits the intellectual capital of the team. The team will simply not be able to perform at optimal capacity.
Learning is negatively impacted as well. When not sharing, you are taking away the other persons opportunity for learning and growth. The team’s growth is therefore affected too.
Openness and transparency is increasingly expected, both within organisations and in the external world around us. It starts with us right now, right here, sharing more relevant information with the people we work with.
Here are a four proven ways to encourage your team members to share relevant information with each other.
1. Take the lead!
Yes, it starts with you. People often think “knowledge is power” and therefore hold on to it rather than give it away. If you want others to share information, you need to kick that off, make it happen by showing you’re not afraid to share or give something away.
2. Tell them about the effect
Feedback is essential here. Use feedback to encourage people, so they realise that sharing was the right thing to do. Explain that ‘by sharing that information, this is what you get’. Also point out when sharing could have helped but didn’t happen – and do it in real time if possible. It is about creating insights and learning.
3. Celebrate the successes
By celebrating the success of sharing you’re making people aware of how crucial the sharing has been to success. Then start dissecting it. Why did it work well? If it worked well, find out why it did and then do that again, adapting it to new situations too. The pace at which people work now means they rarely take the time to stop and celebrate something done well because we’re on already to the next job. But it’s worth it, do stop and reflect. Celebrate.
4. Dare to share
This is the champion, this is where it really happens. There’s often fear involved when it comes to sharing; fear of losing face or saying the wrong thing or maybe sharing too much. Something very powerful happens when people see someone else dare to share though. Behaviours are contagious. Behaviour breeds behaviour, disclosure breeds disclosure.
So why not go ahead and fearlessly share what you know with your team members for the benefit of everyone and create that invisible bond for your team.
About the authors:
Mandy Flint & Elisabet Vinberg Hearn, award-winning authors of ”The Team Formula” and ”Leading Teams – 10 Challenges: 10 Solutions”, published by Financial Times International and a practical tool for building winning teams. They are currently writing their third book about Leadership Impact. You can download a free chapter of “Leading Teams 10 Challenge 10 Solutions” here
Praise for ”Leading Teams”: This book is really, and literally, something else. Not the usual management fad. Instead, here is a manual with troubleshooting instructions within. I love that suggested solutions are taken down to what behaviours to display to make the solution come to life. The exemplifications of problems are spot on, and you can immediately recognize and relate to them. I and my team have worked a lot with creating team accountability and efficiency, and with the help of this manual we can continue to work with it on our own. My team members will get a copy as soon as the book is out” Håkan Nyberg, Chief Executive Officer, Nordnet Bank