When looking for employees everybody is looking for team players. And when asked of course everybody is a team player. But what exactly is a team player? Here is my list of properties of a real team player.

  • A team player takes responsibility. So the other team members can take care of their responsibilities without wondering if you do your job as promised
  • A team player gives up responsibility. It is not called a team when you do everything.  This also means you have to judge the results of others fairly. Just because it is different then what you would have done, doesn't mean it is bad. It doesn't even mater if your solution would have been better, or if you would have been faster. What matters is: Is the solution sufficient for the problem at hand.
  • A team player helps even when she is not responsible. When you hear the phrase "not my responsibility" you know you left team land.
  • A team player communicates well. A Team is about doing things together. This doesn't work when the others don't know what you are up to, or when you don't know what the others are up to.
  • A team player knows empathy. When you try you'll notice when somebody is stressed out without her telling you so. Sometimes people just need a chat, and at another time they just need some time on their own. Its great when team members knows to tell the difference.
  • A team player fits the team. That one is mean but true. There are groups that get along well and others don't. There is nobody who fits every team.