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When working with a team, you’ll rarely find an individual that’s an expert in every facet of the project. In most instances, there will be a few key individuals who are particularly strong in one particular area – whether it’s programming, writing or design – and the others will be weaker in that skill set, but strong in another area such as database creation or marketing.
1. Don’t be afraid to ask for help.
If you’re strong in the area of design and the project needs some assistance, then step up and offer to help. Most likely, there’s another person within the team who may have a shred of design knowledge but their work is lacking. By stepping up and helping you’ll not only demonstrate a willingness to contribute, but also learn from your mistakes and become more familiar with the project as a whole.
2.Don’t be afraid to say “I don’t know.”
In this particular example, you can quickly learn from another team member who is strong in that particular area. This can foster a closer bond within the team and you’ll be able to learn something new, even if it is something as simple as going through the design elements available in Photoshop.
3.Participate in professional development opportunities.
In this example, a copywriter may be strong in writing but has little to no knowledge of Adobe InDesign; however, they can learn InDesign by taking a course at the local university. Developing yourself and your skill set will not only impress others and make you more marketable, but it’ll also make you a better team player.
4.Find your niche within the team.
Ultimately, it’s better to develop one area and become a leader or expert in that particular area rather than trying to be a jack-of-all-trades and mastering none. Find something that you’re passionate about and focus on developing yourself through learning new skills as well as applying your strengths to the project at hand. Remember, you can still contribute without being a master at everything.
5.Don’t take credit for others’ hard work.
As the project manager, you’ll find yourself in a position to accept praise for something that you actually didn’t do. Remain humble and remember that there’s more than one person working on the project as a whole. While it may be tempting to take credit for every little thing you did on the project, remember that your team expects you to be truthful and take responsibility for what you actually worked on.
6.Be flexible – teamwork is not always your way or the highway.
Each team member has their own strengths and weaknesses. The most successful projects are those who respect each other’s ideas and opinions, but also can adapt when a good one surfaces from another member of the group that may not have been addressed at first.
7.Learn to graciously accept constructive criticism.
If the project fails, it’s not your fault — it’s the team’s responsibility as a unit to find a solution and come up with something that works. By being flexible and open to other people’s ideas, you’re ultimately helping yourself since you will be better prepared for future opportunities. Learn from everyone’s feedback, but don’t take it personally; after all, this is a group effort and criticism is just another way of communicating issues or concerns.
8.Be honest about your strengths and weaknesses.
If the project fails, admit that it was a team effort, not an individual one. The only way that you can grow and learn from your mistakes is to take full responsibility. By doing so, you’ll find yourself appreciating the opportunity to help someone who may be in the same situation as you were once before, and ultimately create a stronger bond with other team members whom you can rely on for future projects.