43 Ways to Become a Valued Team Player

Posted by Kristin Arnold on January 10, 2024

Valued Team Player

So, you want to be a valued team player – the MVP of your team? Not just the go-to person for crunch time, but the one who brings out the best in everyone? Well, it’s not just about getting your tasks done or being Mr. or Ms. Nice all the time. It’s more like being the secret sauce that makes the whole team deliciously successful.

Here are 43 ways to be that valued team player:

Professional Competence and Reliability

  1. Do Your Job.  Be skilled and reliable in your specific job functions.
  2. Do It Well.  Consistently deliver high-quality work.
  3. Be Confident.  Show competence and enthusiasm in your job.
  4. Meet Deadlines.  Complete tasks on time and be punctual for meetings.
  5. Be a Continuous Learner.  Keep up with industry trends and learn new skills.
  6. Take Initiative.  Propose innovative and valuable ideas.  Offer to lead a project.
  7. Add Value.  Make yourself indispensable through diligence and professionalism.

Communication and Interpersonal Skills

  1. Communicate Clearly.  Articulate thoughts clearly and timely in verbal and written communications to avoid misunderstandings.
  2. Actively Listen.  Seek first to understand and then to be understood. Respect and acknowledge others’ viewpoints.
  3. Provide Constructive Feedback.  Offer solutions-oriented feedback.
  4. Speak Up Respectfully When You Disagree.  Voice your opinions thoughtfully.
  5. Use More Inclusive Language.  Use the word “I” less and “we” more.
  6. Ask for Help.  Respect others’ expertise by seeking assistance.
  7. Be Interested.  Show engagement and interest in conversations.
  8. Remember Things About People.  Notice, remember, and comment on personal details.
  9. Have an Opinion.  Express well-thought-out ideas and suggestions.
  10. Speak Up.  Communicate confidently in meetings and discussions when you have something to add to the conversation.
  11. Avoid the Gossip Mill.  Stay away from negative talk about colleagues.

Emotional Intelligence and Professionalism

  1. Keep a Positive Attitude.  Inspire others with a positive demeanor and stay upbeat even in challenging situations.
  2. Think the Best of People.  Assume positive intentions in others.
  3. Respect Differences.  Embrace and respect diversity in the team and the diverse points of view.
  4. Handle Conflicts Maturely.  Resolve conflicts calmly and professionally.
  5. Show Empathy.  Understand and share your feelings and the feelings of colleagues.
  6. Be Approachable.  Encourage others to seek your advice or support.
  7. Be Humble.  Admit your mistakes and recognize others’ strengths.
  8. Be Patient.  Allow space for others to learn and grow.
  9. Take a Stand Against Injustice.  Address and oppose unfair practices.
  10. Be “Professional.” Keep a tidy workspace and dress appropriately.

Collaboration and Teamwork

  1. Team-first Mentality.  Prioritize team goals over personal ambitions.
  2. Be a Goal Champion.  Support and advocate for your team’s goals.
  3. Help Others.  Offer to assist colleagues when they need it – even if they don’t ask for it.
  4. Acknowledge Others’ Contributions.  Recognize and appreciate team efforts, contributions, and achievements.
  5. Treat Everyone With Respect.  Be uniformly respectful to all on the team and in the company.
  6. Make Friends.  Form relationships with respected colleagues.
  7. Be a Connector.  Introduce helpful contacts to colleagues or the company.
  8. Invite People Along.  Include colleagues in networking or social events.
  9. Ask People “How Are You?”  Show interest in colleagues’ personal lives.
  10. Don’t Waste Others’ Time. Be efficient and concise in interactions.
  11. Make Your Meetings Worthwhile.  Conduct effective and necessary meetings.
  12. Learn Your Colleagues’ Working Preferences.  Adapt to others’ working styles.
  13. Be a Teacher.  Share your knowledge and guide colleagues to learn and improve.
  14. Help Out Newbies.  Welcome and assist new employees.
  15. Manage Up. Communicate proactively with superiors.

Think about it: being a valued member of a team is more than just fitting into the group. It’s about really digging in and contributing to what makes your team thrive.

Start with a few focused actions, and you’ll see how they can solidify trust and respect among your colleagues. Imagine the difference when everyone in the team is committed to working smoothly and efficiently towards a common goal. As you strive to enhance your role as a team player, remember that your efforts are key to building this kind of effective and enjoyable work environment. Let’s work together to make our team not just functional, but fantastic.

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KRISTIN ARNOLD, MBA, CSP, CPF|Master has been facilitating meaningful conversations between executives and managers to make better decisions and achieve extraordinary results for 25+ years. She's a leading authority on moderating panel discussions and passionate about finding the perfect olive to complement a vodka martini.

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