A ‘team’ is more than a ‘group’

Teams are an interesting concept and the word ‘teamwork’ always gives a positive impression.

So I’m fascinated by the powers that change an otherwise ‘unteamed’ group of people into a team?

(This post was written over ten years ago and it’s still one of the most popular on our blog, so it’s time to refresh and republish!)

This question first came to mind when I had the good fortune to attend ‘Wintersong 2010’ an annual choral workshop held in the Blue Mountains. The weekend revolved around learning and performing diverse works arranged for choir – with 90 other singers from all over the country.

Composer and musician, Paul Jarman led us in an amazing workshop.  In around an hour, we composed and performed a choral work in 7 parts.

My first response when I heard about this plan was ‘this will never work’.  To my amazement, it worked brilliantly!

I think we all began working as a team at that point in the weekend.  (And arguably for the rest of the weekend, in producing some incredible sounds.)

For this project we were a team and not just a group because we had:

1.  A very skilled and experienced leader;

2.  An intention to create something of quality;

3.  Goodwill and a desire to cooperate;

4.  Diverse ideas and abilities; and

5.  A specific goal, with a defined timeframe.

What do you think?

Do these things make a team?  Or am I getting carried away with the analogy?

I’d love to know, so leave your comments below.

More reading on teams:

PS. The H Factor has an inbuilt platform to enable teams to work better together. Book your free demo today!

About Susan Rochester

Susan Rochester has been managing director of Balance at Work since 2006. Susan has a natural tendency to balance analytical thinking with an optimistic outlook to set direction and solve problems. She is an effective facilitator and constantly creates new and more effective ways of doing things, motivated by helping others to achieve their goals.

8 thoughts on “A ‘team’ is more than a ‘group’

    1. Thanks, Bev, for a very good point! That certainly applied on the weekend: There were some amazing voices in the room, but it was all about doing something great together. No divas!

  1. Susan, I think a good team is one in which each member respects the other for the individual strengths, gifts and talents they bring to the team. They realise to get a good outcome it is a blend of unique strengths complementing others weaknesses. In other words we can’t be good at everything but we can try to find people who are good where we are weak.

  2. I would add that you all had the intense experience of actually performing together. The things you mention are pre-performance, so make it a potential team – the actual performance pulls it together, and is where people really feel the power of being part of a team. Love it when that happens!

    Great blog Susan …

    1. Thanks, Hugh, for stopping by! Of course, what we miss (as it was a one-off workshop) is the joy of building on our successes to create even greater performance in the future…

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