(Kelsey Weiss is a Skidmore College student participating in the Braathe Enterprises Virtual Internship Program)
First, let’s go back to the basics:
1. Companies are made up of people.
2. Employees must work together in different situations in order to accomplish whatever task they have been assigned.
3. If a team can’t work together, the task will either not be completed or the team will have a very frustrating and difficult experience in order to come up with a solution.
No matter what company you work for or what industry you’re in, teamwork and collaboration are essential to dealing with any problem, idea, or suggestion. Whether you are deciding what to have for lunch or how to develop a new product, teamwork is indispensable if trying to find the best resolution possible.
In his talk entitled: “Build a tower, build a team,” Tom Wujec addresses how different teams work together when given the seemingly simple task of designing a tower made of spaghetti and placing a marshmallow on top. Wujec describes the teams’ beginning creative process, which typically falls into two succinct steps: orienting to the task, which includes fighting for power, and the second as planning and organizing.
When team members don’t have to fight for power, assuming that there is already a hierarchy of some kind previously established in the workplace, the team members work together more effectively. Without a power complex, teams can easily create prototypes and refine them to ultimately come up with the best plan to solve their prompt.
In order to build a strong team, the members must speak a “common language” in terms of what they want to accomplish and how they plan to work together. The inherent challenge present in team building concerns the underlying factors, most importantly, varying skill sets. If the secret to finding the paramount solution is collaboration, then each member’s skill set needs to facilitate the project in some way.
No matter what stakes are put in place, if a team is not able to capitalize and utilize their team members’ attributes, then it is impossible for them to create prototypes that lead them to their end goal. In essence, teamwork is imperative to a company’s success, but only if the team can effectively identify their assets and collaborate to come up with the most effective result.
Tom Wujec: Build a tower, build a team