Essential Qualities of a Powerful Team Player

By Indeed Editorial Team

Published 30 June 2021

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

Professionals with the qualities of a team player are integral to the productivity of an organisation. They encourage people to share their points of view in a safe and supportive environment. Thus, understand the key characteristics of a team player can propel your progress along the corporate ladder. In this article, we discuss what a team player is, why it's an important personal attribute, the qualities of a good team player, how you can improve and tips on sharing your team player skills with a recruiter.

What is a team player?

A team player is a professional who collaborates with their team members in a productive and respectful manner. These individuals tend to have superior interpersonal skills. They can work with various personality types and people from diverse backgrounds harmoniously.

Good team players attract the attention of employers, recruiters and their colleagues because they are easy to be around and fun to work with. They put in the effort to listen to others' ideas actively and put the team's interests above their own. Rather than feeling insecure about the success of their co-workers, team players celebrate their achievements with genuine enthusiasm.

Related: Teamwork Skills: Definition and Examples

Why is being a team player important?

Being a team player is important because business is a highly social environment. Thus, this personal characteristic can boost your employability and make you appear a viable candidate for leadership roles. Here's a summary of the benefits of being an excellent team player:

Encourages new ideas

Team players make people feel valued and appreciated. This positive energy in the team dynamic encourages your co-workers to speak up. The more people that contribute their ideas, the more likely you're to find creative solutions to problems and creative ideas to engage your customers. The quality helps businesses thrive and sustain their momentum for future development.

Related: Interpersonal Skills: Definitions and Examples

Helps solve problems

Collaboration allows people to remain motivated in difficult circumstances. When challenges arise, a good team player ensures everyone works together to solve a problem. They are confident enough to accept their mistakes and take the advice of others. This way, teams can quickly move on from problems and maintain business operations as normal.

Instils a culture of support

Rather than resorting to blaming others for an issue, team players bring their co-workers together and support them through challenging times. They are genuinely interested in the emotions of others and can act as an emotional foundation that sustains the motivation of their team. A team that's supportive of each other during a crisis can create long-lasting bonds of trust that benefit them throughout their time working together.

Boosts employee morale

Team players create a positive working environment. This reduces the stress of their colleagues. If you're in a leadership position, it's even more crucial to role model effective teamwork skills. Your behaviour can inspire your co-workers to uphold the same values. Encouraging a collaborative company culture boosts overall employee morale. Professionals are less likely to leave your organisation, saving employers important resources that they can invest in the future development of the firm.

Qualities of powerful team players

The following is a list of crucial qualities that powerful team players employ in their day-to-day duties:

They show a commitment to their team

Team players remain supportive of their team members at all times. They give them their time and energy, especially when asked for their help. Rather than expecting anything in return, team players focus on the greater good of the team's ability to achieve set goals.

They are reliable and responsible

Team players can organise their time and duties in order of priority. They are considerate of their co-workers and manage their time effectively. These professionals attend meetings on time and prepare their discussion points well in advance. Their proactive behaviour builds trust. Employers know they can depend on team players for quality work and additional help.

They uphold excellent communication skills

Communication is integral to teamwork. Effective team players are aware of how their choice of words, tone of voice, body language and facial expressions can influence the motivation of others. This way, they're able to share instructions clearly. It minimises miscommunication in the workplace and encourages your colleagues to open up to you.

Related: 10 Effective Communication Skills for Career Success

They are good listeners

When working with your colleagues, it's essential to listen to their opinions and ideas attentively. This shows you respect them, despite their age or rank. To improve your listening skills, concentrate on trying not to interrupt others as they speak and nod occasionally to show your interest. Doing so allows you to get a complete picture of what the person is saying before you respond or ask for clarifications.

They acknowledge their mistakes

Accountability in the workplace helps you gain respect and trust. It's an important by-product of good teamwork skills because it safeguards against unproductive communication styles, such as blaming and hiding information. If you're a leader in your workplace, it's essential that you act with accountability, because it can inspire a similar attitude among your co-workers.

How to become an excellent team player

Displaying good teamwork skills emphasises your work ethic. It makes you more attractive for promotions, raises and other performance rewards. The following is a step-by-step guide detailing how you can become a better team player:

1. Meet your deadlines

Be courteous to your team's effort by remaining vigilant about your own work deadlines. This way, you won't be any delays in your group projects. When you are responsible for your duties, your co-workers can depend on you. It means that each team member is contributing equally to the team's success.

2. Be open-minded

When brainstorming ideas together, listen to others' thoughts carefully. It helps enhance the overall quality of your projects and sparks inspiration. You might need to humble yourself to accept constructive criticism or to embrace a better idea. Being open-minded sustains innovation for the long run.

3. Show gratitude to your co-workers

Show regard for the contributions of your team members. This not only helps increase their motivation, but it also maintains your relationships with your colleagues. For example, you can email them a thank-you note to express that you valued their effort during a challenging project. Similarly, small daily gestures of kindness, such as using polite mannerisms, can create a healthy team dynamic.

4. Prioritise the team's goals

Discuss your vision as a team so that you can support each other towards common goals. Align your career ambitions with the team so that you feel motivated to achieve these goals. It's best to focus on your similarities rather than the differences. This way, you can collaborate with each other in a harmonious manner.

5. Be accountable

When you make a mistake, own up to it. Being accountable to yourself and your team members enhances trust. It ensures that the team continues to back each other during challenging times. This way, when misunderstandings arise, you can amicably solve them without resorting to blaming each other. A culture of accountability and transparency reduces fear and encourages people to speak up.

6. Share in the success of others

Give credit where it's due. In other words, celebrate the success of your co-workers and not just your own. Simple gestures, such as saying thank-you or hosting a team lunch, show that you value their effort. It builds their sense of belonging to the team, especially co-workers that have joined your company recently.

Tips on sharing your teamwork skills with recruiters

Highlighting your teamwork skills when corresponding with recruiters can enhance the attractiveness of your job application. Potential employers hold team players in high regard because they can easily assimilate into a new corporate environment. Rather than creating rifts, these employees maintain the peace and quickly form closing relationships with their new co-workers. Here are a few tips on sharing your teamwork skills with recruiters:

  • Mention your teamwork skills in your CV. You can state that you're a team player in the skills section of your CV with examples of your previous achievements in a group setting. If you're applying for a managerial position, make sure to bring attention to this characteristic in your work experience section, too.

  • Demonstrate your interpersonal skills in a job interview. Try to relax and be yourself during your conversation with an interviewer. Share your personality with them to highlight your social skills. When you build a rapport with a recruiter, they are more likely to believe in your ability to create an intimate bond with their colleagues and customers.

  • Follow-up with the recruiter. After an interview, remember to send a thank-you note to the company. This presents you as a considerate professional who's mindful of the time and efforts others make. It implies that you can be supportive in a team environment, too.

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