This past weekend I read Jon Gordon’s excellent book The Power of a Positive Team. In one section of the book, he lists some specific differences between being a team and being on a team. As you read through this excerpt evaluate your teams – family, workplace, organization, church, sports team – to see how they’re doing.
Many people think that just because they are on a team, they are part of a real team. That isn’t the case. Being on a team doesn’t make you a team. Being a real team is what makes a group of people into a team. Consider the following:
- People who are just on a team focus on their own goals.
- People who part of a real team focus on team goals first and their individual goals second.
- Individuals just on a team are committed to getting better and improving themselves.
- Individuals who are part of a real team are not only committed to self-improvement, but they are also committed to making each other and the team better.
- People just on a team think about how the team can serve their desires.
- People who are part of a real team desire to serve the team.
- When people are just on a team, communication isn’t a priority.
- When people are a real team, communication is essential to build trust, commitment, and teamwork.
- On a team, each individual’s time is more important than the team.
- A real team member makes time with the team a priority.
- On a team, trust, love, and respect are not often discussed or cultivated.
- A real team focuses on building trust, sharing love, and showing respect.
- On a team, people fight, which hurts the team because members don’t have love and trust.
- On a real team, members also fight, but the fighting makes the team stronger because they have trust and love. They grow from their disagreements.
- On a team, not everyone is on the bus.
- On a real team, everyone is on the bus and with a shared vision, focus, and purpose.
- On a team, there’s a lack of leadership.
- On a real team, there are strong leaders who develop other leaders.
- People just on a team have egos and want to be great.
- People who are part of a real team also have egos and want to be great, but they give up their egos to serve their team and a bigger cause in order to be truly great.