CeCe Marizu, Account Executive

If you’re an athlete have you heard, “Why do you use the word teammate?” or “You talk about your teammates a lot” or “Why don’t you just call them friends?”  No matter how many times you explain to people that your teammates are your best friends or basically your second family, people never seem to really understand the term the way you use it.

A teammate isn’t just someone you work with to achieve a common goal, they’re the people who see you at your best and at your worst.  They’re the people who know how to motivate you to higher limits while also knowing when it’s time to back away.  They’re the people you share your darkest secrets with and your biggest accomplishments.  They’re also people you didn’t pick to be on a team with.  They have different backgrounds, different opinions and yet you still work hard together.  

So how do you get that kind of atmosphere at work?  How do you create an atmosphere that your co-workers can become your teammates? 

First, use each day at work to get better.  Swimming is an individual sport, but everyday we thought of getting better as a team.  When one of the girls had a fast swim in practice it gave us all the motivation to get that much faster in our own workout.  At work, feed off each other’s work ethic.  Make sure to be vocal and congratulate your colleagues or team members on accomplishments with their clients or thank them for helping you edit a press release. 

Next, be supportive.  You probably didn’t click with every single teammate, but no matter if you hated or loved them, you always showed support because they were your teammate.  Let’s be honest, if one person fails the team fails.   If you don’t think like that, change your attitude immediately. After a big win or a devastating lost you get back to work and fine-tune the little details.  If you notice a team member struggling in a certain area, help them out and be there when they need advice.  If you’re struggling on writing a press release or need advice on how to approach a client don’t be afraid to ask someone. 

Lastly, learn to have one vision and stay humble.  The idea of having a focused goal rather than a million ideas can unite a team.  Also, a humble team is key to the vision.  You may have a star on the team, or in the work world it may be your CEO who contributes the most, but the team stays focused and humble together.  Too many people let egos destroy team dynamics.  The star on the team doesn’t win games or close deals alone forever.  A clear vision and a strong team will give you the most success.

Pat Riley, former coach and current president of the Miami Heat said, “Great teamwork is the only way we create the breakthroughs that define our careers.”  Are you willing to commit to your work and team?