The secrets of a winning team
A recent survey conducted by communications software company Unify, looked into teams that are not based in a single location and the ingredients that made the difference between unsuccessful and successful teams. The outcome was that being grouped in the same location, or spread geographically in several locations actually has no direct impact on the success of that team.
What did have an impact was how those team members communicated with one another. The pertinent finding was the way in which those team members engaged with each other, the frequency of that engagement, and openness that they displayed when communicating. Simply put, the successful teams were the ones that engaged often, spoke their minds, contributed freely, spoke on a personal level, and contributed equally to the mission.
Here is a short comparison of the findings grouped between teams that considered themselves to be successful and teams that considered their success to be very limited.
Successful teams include more personable members
71% of these people enjoyed personal conversations with each other every day or at least every week. Less successful teams only had 42% of members engaging in this way. In fact 38% of those on less successful teams admitted that they rarely or never engage in this way with colleagues. The successful teams showed that they continued this engagement no matter how many members were based in different locations.
Successful teams don’t let geography become a relationship barrier
Of the most successful teams, 86% frequently communicated with colleagues on other sites simply to stay connected with them. Within the less successful teams, nearly half of them didn’t do this, only communicating when totally necessary.
Interactive communication is better than monolog in meetings
High succeeding teams said that less that 25% of meetings consist of dull monologs according to 77% of them. Instead they enjoy collaborative, interactive exchanges of ideas. Only 16% of unsuccessful teams reported the same thing. Furthermore, more than half of all meetings are a boring monolog according to 39% of those unsuccessful team members asked.
Focused meetings equal success
More than half of the successful teams reported that they rarely found themselves being subjected to irrelevant calls or meetings. Only 22% of unsuccessful teams said the same, showing their energy and enthusiasm is being drained whilst someone drones on about something that doesn’t affect them.
Location barriers don’t stop collaboration
84% of more successful team didn’t think they were any less likely to voice disagreement on virtual calls rather than face to face meetings. They still felt able to be open and communicate their feelings wherever they were. And 80% of those successful team members also felt just as confident on virtual calls when offering a spontaneous skeletal ideas to throw into the mix.
Distance doesn’t get in their way
68% of successful team members said that over 50% of their team members were based in different locations. And 85% of them admitted that over 25% of their team work remotely. With unsuccessful teams, 55% had more than 50% of their members working in different locations, with 75% of them having more than 25% of their members working remotely.
This tells us that the location of members doesn’t affect the success of the team, but the way those members interact does have a significant effect.
Much of this can be solved by adapting processes within the workplace. Things that might help include changing the way meetings are carried out to make everyone feel valued and free to contribute; only including those on scheduled meetings when it’s relevant to them; making 1-2-1 briefings for team leaders to get all relevant information to them without bothering others that it doesn’t affect; or making a point of reaching out to remote workers simply to catch up.
But where possible it’s also great to take the teams out of the office, invite the remote workers along, and treat the whole team to some bonding experiences.
In fact, we at Rock & Roll Experience often deliver events in the UK and Europe to clients who wish their remote workers, or teams from different locations to connect with each other on a personal level. Here we are asked to get them working together, having fun together, helping them discover each other’s strengths and weaknesses, and building relationships through music.
This is always a really effective vehicle with which to achieve that. In fact, our rock band events see them learning how to play instruments together, writing a song together, and performing it on stage together, and thus bringing them together as they might be if they worked in the same building. We do this by throwing challenges at them, taking them out of their comfort zone, forcing them to collaborate, bringing out their creativity and brain storming abilities, and then finding the courage together to perform and deliver the end product.
Get in touch with us to see how we could help bring your team together and create a more open and successful team environment.