The Benefits of Teamwork and Why Are Team-Building Activities Important?

The Benefits of Teamwork and Why Are Team-Building Activities Important?

During the World Cup championships, many of us will support our favourite teams. We’ll watch them celebrate the highs and tackle the lows as one unit - perhaps even feeling as though we are a part of the team, too?

 

The emotions accompanying major sports events have the power to make us feel like Champions. But what if we told you, that we - every single one of us - can also be Champions on a daily basis?

 

Right now is a good time to reflect on the importance of teamwork - on our personal approach to it, as well as on its general impact on our life, both private and professional. Just like some sports - such as football, in this case - couldn’t exist with just a single player striving for victory, many areas of the business environment also wouldn’t exist or function properly without teamwork.

 

Working as a team is particularly crucial in the customer experience domain - the multi-dimensional pillar of a majority of businesses nowadays. Just like a football team represents their country, customer experience employees represent their company and win the customers’ loyalty and trust. 

 

We understand that not everyone may be a fan of working as a part of the team, since some people perform better on their own. However, we’re hoping that by explaining how teamwork increases productivity and improves communication, we will change your mind. 

 

Let’s look at some of the benefits of teamwork in business:

 

Why teamwork is important in the workplace? Become a Champion by working as a part of a team 

 

  1. Increased efficiency and productivity at work

 

We all like knowing that what we do brings results. No one enjoys working for the sake of working - we need the awareness that our actions make a difference. Did you know that 81% of employees cite effective collaboration as the reason behind their improved productivity?

 

This proves that there’s a direct relationship between efficiency and teamwork. When we join forces with our coworkers, our chances of becoming successful grow. On the contrary, ineffective teamwork can negatively impact our performance. The lack of collaboration, after all, is the main factor that 86% of employees in leadership positions pinpoint as the reason for failures in the workplace. 


 

  1. Opportunity to learn from one another

 

Teams consist of employees with varying levels of experience in the industry, different seniority in the company, and multiple professional and educational backgrounds. Being a part of such a team is a great opportunity to share the knowledge we have, and learn something new from our more seasoned colleagues.

 

Peer collaboration was selected as the ideal method of learning in the workplace by 48% of workers. By engaging in teamwork, we can not only find out more about our own professional area, but also understand better what the daily tasks of those in other positions look like.

 

For example, the customer service department is a goldmine of valuable information for those on the marketing team. Customer service representatives are on the frontline and through their interaction with clients, they discover their primary queries and concerns that marketing can address while planning campaigns. Two supposedly unrelated roles can cooperate to improve the company’s performance on many levels.


 

  1. Variety

 

Alex Osborn, the father of brainstorming, predicted that the method of which invention we now attribute to him would improve the performance of those using it by 50%, compared to people working on their own. This particular statistic is the subject of close scrutiny these days, but what cannot be denied is that sharing points of view is, in general, beneficial.

 

While brainstorming is primarily performed in creative sectors, an exchange of opinions is a tactic valued by many employees and employers alike. A single person making a decision without consulting others is an exhibit of authoritarianism. While a company with a hierarchical structure is not exactly an example of a democratic environment, good leaders will take into account the employees’ opinions about projects concerning them before making the final call.

 

Poor communication and collaboration lead to the accumulation of workplace stress. It’s easy to see why workers whose voice is never heard could get frustrated. Making decisions as a team and presenting them to the team leader, who can, later on, pass them forward to those in higher positions, can help everyone feel included.

 

We all come from different backgrounds, see the world in different ways, and have different ideas and opinions. Rather than a limitation, this diversity should be perceived as a trait. A team where every member can freely express their viewpoint and contribute to a project can create something meaningful together.


 

  1. Success is the result of a combined team effort 

 

About 3 out of 4 employees believe teamwork is very important. Let that sink in.

 

If 75% of people see the advantage of something, there must be some sense to it, right? Of course, we all operate in different ways - it’s completely normal to feel more comfortable working on your own rather than as a part of a team. But even if occasional, teamwork can have its advantages.

 

Workplace collaboration has increased by 50% in the last 20 years. That means employers see the effectiveness of teamwork and are more willing to implement it as a part of the workers’ daily life. The last thing business owners are interested in is adopting strategies that don’t bring them any profit.

 

If collaboration is placed by employers among the top 4 essential skills for employees’ future success, that must mean that they, too, value the power of teamwork, because they see the positive results of it.

 

Let’s back it up with an example. Imagine a customer service department in an international company. A single person cannot possibly handle all the calls coming in throughout the day, while at the same time responding to emails and handling the live chat on the website. Not to mention, the multinational character of the business requires the employee to fluently speak different languages.

 

This is precisely why so many employees responsible for the customer experience are needed nowadays. They need to work as a team, making sure each customer is left satisfied. Speakers of multiple languages are in high demand in this particular sector, so that together, they can provide the highest quality of service possible in areas such as marketing, communications, logistics, and sales. 


 

  1. Mutual support from the team

 

The corporate world can be a competitive and lonely place. We often rush to complete a task no matter the cost, lest it’s taken away from us and given to someone else. Work overload can decrease productivity by 68%.

 

Some projects are impossible to carry out on your own - either because they’re too complex to fit in the given deadline, or consist of so many areas, we require someone else’s assistance.

 

Happy workers are proven to be up to 20% more productive than their stressed, overworked, unhappy colleagues. In a large part, those happy employees owe their satisfaction to teamwork and collaboration. Completing a project together can not only be eye-opening thanks to the involvement of coworkers with different roles, but said coworkers can also provide support.

 

When we work towards a common goal, we tend to feel partially responsible for it. That shared responsibility will motivate team members to support one another in the strive towards the collective purpose.

 

Your colleagues contributing to the same project will know exactly what difficulties you’re facing, as they will be similar to their own. Because of that, they will be able to offer advice and possible solutions, taking some of the weight off your shoulders.


 

  1. Gaining trust through collaboration

 

The reason why we often prefer to do things on our own is that we don’t trust each other enough. It’s understandable, but if we continue delving deeper into this vicious cycle, we will never be free of it - we do things alone because we don’t trust others to help us do them, and since we don’t trust others, we keep doing them on our own. 

 

Beginnings are always the hardest, but those who take the leap and work as a part of the team for the first time are usually positively surprised by the results it brings. The decision to form a team and assign it to a particular project is hardly ever born out of the initiative of one of the team members. 

 

It’s usually a manager or a team leader who decides who will work together and on which task. Someone in a leadership position will know the employees enough to be able to tell who will cooperate well on a specific task. They trust that together, you can achieve the goal they set for you, so it’s your turn to trust their judgement - and each other. 

 

Building trust with someone you don’t know is always challenging, but not impossible. A customer service agent, for example, needs to do that on a daily basis. When someone they have never met contacts them, it is their goal to build a relationship with that person, to the point where the customer will begin to trust them and, by default, the entire company. It is not an easy task, but definitely a rewarding one.


The importance of team-building activities

 

We have established why teamwork is important in the workplace. But still, another question remains - how to build a functioning team? Is there a way to create bonds with fellow employees and make sure we feel comfortable around one another? How do we build that trust we have said we often lack? Is there a method for understanding team members?

 

The answer is: team-building activities. 

 

What sometimes seems like a silly way to have fun at the expense of the company is actually a well-functioning tool. Human Resources use team-building activities to improve communication and collaboration, as well as to motivate employees. 

 

Spending some quality time with your coworkers, often during working hours but outside of the office, is a great way to get to know your colleagues better - also on a personal level, rather than just the professional one.

 

We all enter different roles in various environments - we’re not the same around our family, friends, partner, coworkers, or total strangers. While the level of how comfortable people are revealing their private side in a professional setting largely depends on the country, the role of team-building activities is to help us relax a little.

 

There is no better way to build trust than to get to know your colleagues on a personal level. Team building exercises allow us all to look at one another not as coworkers, but as people. Who knew that Marge from Sales volunteers at the animal shelter in her free time? Or that Paul from Marketing shares the same hobby as you? 

 

Nobody expects everyone to become best friends, or even to extend their relationship to their private life. But without an opportunity to even peer past the professional surface, we don’t even get a chance to trust each other more. 


Case study: How Sitel helps you become a Champion in the Customer Experience domain

 

As we have said, teamwork in the workplace is becoming more and more popular as employers realise the importance of it for the business’ success. One of such employers is Sitel Portugal - a world-class leader in customer experience products and solutions. 

 

“Work together to make an impact” is one of the pillars of their award-winning company culture. By building successful, well-functioning teams, they create a happy working environment and enjoy excellent results. They encourage their customer experience employees to become Champions in their domain, and provide them with tools and opportunities to do so. 

 

Sitel Portugal’s CX Champions are rewarded for their efforts with attractive working conditions, including, but not limited to:

 

  • A multicultural environment celebrating diversity

  • Numerous development opportunities 

  • Competitive wages

  • A working environment based on creativity, innovation, and safety

  • Private health and dental insurance

  • SitelFit wellness programme meant to nourish the team spirit


 

Happy employees build productive teams. It’s not enough to encourage teamwork, but it’s also necessary to motivate by making sure said employees are accurately recognised for their hard work and remunerated accordingly. Sitel Portugal understands this principle, which contributes to its global success. 
 


We hope we’ve clarified how teamwork contributes to organisational success and highlighted the importance of team-building activities. Considering we spend roughly ⅓ of our lives at work, it’s in our best interest to make the working environment as amicable as possible. 

 

Team-building exercises are meant to help us get closer to one another and create a friendly ambience in the office. Once this is achieved, teamwork and collaboration will contribute to your productivity and reduce work overload, which will, in turn, increase your satisfaction with your job. 

 

So, if you’re looking to become more efficient, broaden your knowledge and add some variety to your career, teamwork to make the dream work!


 

The data used in this article was obtained from the following sources:

 

 

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