Are You a Good Team Player?

An effective team defines its own success. It becomes the backbone of any organization's positive growth and development. But have you ever wondered what makes a good team player? You might be asked this question in a job interview, or it could be a part of a self-analysis. So, to solve your conundrum, here's taking a look at the qualities of a good team player.
When a team outgrows individual performance and learns team confidence, excellence becomes a reality.
~ Joe Paterno
Putting a plan into action always requires some kind of coordination. It needs a team effort to complete multiple tasks, which culminate into achieving the set goal. This means, a team needs a leader and team players to work harmoniously and peacefully. Being a team player does not come easy to everyone. However, one needs to develop or acquire these skills, in order to be successful in whatever endeavors one may pick.

The question whether one has the abilities to be a team player can be an introspective one, or a question that is asked at job interviews. Either way, how does one answer it? Asking yourself the right questions will help you find out the right answers. Before we begin to understand what makes a good player, let us have a round of assessment.
Take the Quiz
1. Every time there is a problem amongst the team members, you try to sort it out.
  • Yes
  • No

2. If your team members are struggling with workload, you take up extra shifts.
  • Yes
  • No

3. You think it is better to work with others rather than finish the work individually?
  • Yes
  • No

4. Do you always feel that you put in more work than your peers?
  • Yes
  • No

5. Do your colleagues enjoy working with you?
  • Yes
  • No

6. Does it take you a while to adjust to changes in a team, and is it a matter of stress if you have to?
  • Yes
  • No

7. If the team lead has asked his team to organize an event, do you proactively lead in getting your team members together?
  • Yes
  • No

8. At team meetings do you suggest ideas, and are they discussed?
  • Yes
  • No

9. Do you look for ways in which you can get more work and learn something new each day?
  • Yes
  • No

10. Is accepting a new team member easy for you?
  • Yes
  • No
Your result will display here...
Questions to Ask Yourself in More Detail
Do you communicate constructively?
For a team to know its agenda and direction, it needs its leader. However, a leader may not always be on the right track. In times like these, when teams meet, a good team player is the one who tables opinions in an effective manner, choosing words with utmost care. To be a good team player, it is important that the point is well understood, and not just voiced. Thus, constructive communication becomes the basic deciding factor for being a good team player.
Do you like working with your colleagues?
Good team players enjoy working with their teammates. They are more than not willing to share the knowledge they have, learn from someone's experience, and add to their pool of information. They also show keen interest in assigned projects or work, and take the initiative to keep other team members informed about the latest developments at all times. A good team player also is the one who motivates the rest of the people in the team, if the need arises.
Are you a good listener?
Good and active listeners are very important pillars of strength in a team. After all, how is it possible for a team to function if everyone keeps talking? Good listening skills mean the ability to absorb, assimilate, comprehend, analyze, and consider several points of view or methods of working, without the show of any aggression. Even in times when such a team member may be at the receiving end of some wrath, being calm and composed makes them good team players, as opposed to those who would act defensively.
Are you flexible and accommodative?
A team may need to suddenly change its plan of action in order to finish a project faster or differently. This means that certain roles may change without much notice, and team members will have to adjust accordingly. Good team players are those who adapt to such changes without much hassle, complain, or stress. They quickly blend into the new roles, as they understand that there remains no point to hold on to one's point of view so stubbornly. The reason they can be this flexible and quick to adapt, is because they know moving forward is crucial for the team to achieve its purpose.
Do you share workload or troubleshoot when required?
Being a team player could sometimes mean that one has to share workload, work extra shifts, burn some midnight oil, and just do whatever it takes to meet a deadline. Not every team member can perform to a stated idea of a hundred percent. In such cases, good team players share their workload, help each other through the task, and see to it that there is no lag in achieving the goal(s). Additionally, a truly dedicated team player may undertake solving team problems too. They are the ones to take the bull by the horns, find a solution, and apply it to smoothen out the creases as soon as possible. Good team players never delay dealing with issues that affect the team.
Do you actively participate?
Good team players are those who show and take active participation in team meetings and outings. They are committed to their work, and ask for more. They never sit passively waiting for opportunities or work to walk up to them, but take an active role in taking up challenges and learning new skills.
Essentially, an answer which is positive to these questions will speak about you being a good team player. Dedication, diligence, commitment, and a positive attitude towards success are a few more attributes that define a good team player. Winning as a team is more important than individual glories, as that is what will define an individual as a true winner.