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Characteristics of High-Performing Teams

Characteristics of High-performing Teams

Characteristics of High-performing Teams

All high performing teams have four characteristics, which combine to create peak performance:

  1. Goal focused.
  2. Diverse skill sets.
  3. Well-prepared and organised.
  4. Cooperative.

1. Goal focused.

All teams exist to achieve goals. Teams that do NOT achieve their goals are NOT high performing.

If teams are to achieve goals, they must have a goal-focused mind set.

Many people are not goal-focused. Instead of focusing on goals, they focus on office politics, or distractions, or gossip.

Goal-focused teams are not side-tracked by internal distractions. Instead, they are committed to the goal.

2. Diverse skill sets.

All high-performing teams are composed of members with a variety of complementary skills.

Just as football teams need different skills - strikers, mid fielders, wingers, defenders and goalkeepers - so teams need a diversity of skill sets and attitudes.

Nobody is good at everything, and we need others around us to do the things we cannot.

A diversity of skills ensures the team as a whole has the intellectual, technical and psychological capabilities to solve problems that inevitably occur.

3. Well prepared and organised.

All goals need plans capable of achieving them. High-performing teams prepare detailed, practical plans and utilise their limited resources in the most efficient manner.

Failure to prepare practical plans causes people to act on impulse which is rarely the most efficient way to do business.

Failure to organise resources so that we have everything in the right place at the right time, is the cause of many disasters.

Therefore, all effective teams pride themselves on their excellent planning and organisational skills.

4. Cooperative.

All high performing teams are staffed with people of diverse natures, and skills, which means they see the same situations differently.

This fact may be the cause of conflict, but effective teams do NOT compete against each other. Instead they cooperate with each other, because they recognise that other members all have the same goal in mind.

Low-performing teams are staffed by combative people who squabble amongst themselves and spend their time managing internal conflicts.

High-performing teams are staffed by cooperative people who work together and negotiate joint solutions to their shared problems.

Team Leader Training

Team Leaders have an important role to play in ensuring their teams are high-performing. It is vital that they receive the right Team Leader training to enable them to lead and motivate their teams.

About the Author: Chris Farmer


Chris Farmer is the founder of the Corporate Coach Group and has many years’ experience in training leaders and managers, in both the public and private sectors, to achieve their organisational goals, especially during tough economic times. He is also well aware of the disciplines and problems associated with running a business.

Over the years, Chris has designed and delivered thousands of training programmes and has coached and motivated many management teams, groups and individuals. His training programmes are both structured and clear, designed to help delegates organise their thinking and, wherever necessary, to improve their techniques and skills.

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Further Reading in Teamwork

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    Think carefully about how you can make the lives of your fellow team members better. If you do, then you will be considered to be a positive, beneficial addition to the team. If you don't, you won't.
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  • Staff development training
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  • How can I improve team performance?
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  • A Good Team Builder
    How to build the team On the last presentation of the effective leader manager course, I posed the following question to the delegates: "What are the qualities that make a great leader- manager?" The group came up with the following list of attributes. The leader-manager is a person who is: A...
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  • How can I get the team to work together?
    Do your team members sometimes fight amongst themselves, and tend to work against each other; rather than with each other? If so, what can you do about it?
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