As an athlete who played at the college level, I can remember a quote used by every coach that is just as relevant in business as it is in sports: “There is no ‘I’ in team.” Another quote I heard frequently was “We appreciate you taking one for the team.” The reason why I share these two sayings with you is because no matter where you are in life, these quote play a role. Whether it’s in your insurance agency or at home with family, team is the key to success.
I wanted to discuss the importance of a good player versus a bad player within your agency. But before I do that, I would like to define the word “TEAM.” The definition reads “a group of people with a full set of complementary skills required to complete a task, job, or a project.” Let’s examine what that means when an employee is lauded as being either a good team player or vilified as not being one. I would imagine that every agency has a slightly different definition of a team because of the size of your agency or where it’s located. But overall, good team players are individuals who work in communion with other co-workers to achieve a common goal. Bad team players put themselves ahead of everyone else and fail to think twice about how their actions affect the group’s overall performance. These are the people who aren’t willing to put the agency first.
So with this being said, does your agency have good team players? If not, what are you or the leadership going to do about it? With the ever-growing competition in our industry, we do not have time or energy to battle within our own agency. Individuals who are willing to do whatever it takes to help your agency grow in these ever challenging times are exactly the type of people you want.
So is teamwork overrated? I have heard from several industry friends who say teamwork is overrated, but in my mind, it absolutely is NOT. Nevertheless, we are all social beings, and two heads definitely can be better than one. I personally feel this is why we owe it to ourselves and to each other to understand what a team is, and what it is not.
Teamwork in our agency has gotten better over the last nine to ten months. How does this happen? Well, it occurs when owners like myself continue to invest in becoming better leaders, as well as investing in managers because it’s our duty to constantly improve on our communication skills in helping our teammates grow. I personally invest in two workshops per year to become a better leader. Great teams have great leaders, so don’t think that this investment is a waste- it is the most important investment you make every year in your agency.