The old adage ‘Teamwork makes the dream work’ may be cheesy these days, but it’s certainly still relevant. Our Jackson Sim’s teamwork inspiration comes from a source you may not expect: Actonian’s women’s football club. We have proudly sponsored the club since 2018 and a symbiotic relationship has subsequently developed. We financially support the club, giving back to the local community and the team's wonderful efforts offer us motivation and inspiration. Across the majority of the working world, some element of teamwork is required and whilst professional teamwork looks a bit different to that of the sports field, there are parallels. Skills learnt in the team sporting arena are often of great benefit and here are some perfect examples.
Many team sports like football are fast-paced, requiring quick decision-making and interactions. The constantly changing state of play also means that pre-game planning can quickly fall by the wayside. Therefore, communication with teammates is the only way to remain competitive and one step ahead of the opposition. In addition, this communication needs to be clear and direct, preventing misdirection or confusion.
Often in the working world, communication can be a little slower and more thought out (paramedics aside!) But the same basic principles apply. Being one step ahead of any potential issues and promptly communicating to teammates is an invaluable skill, ensuring that deadlines aren’t missed and that any issues don’t fall through the gaps. Similarly, providing that communication in a clear and directive manner is key to avoiding crossed wires. Of course, we would hope that you wouldn’t word things quite the same way in an email as you would on the pitch!
No, we don’t mean foot-to-eye coordination, but more the way that you interact with team members. Whilst communication also plays a role here, coordination is also about understanding and being empathetic to your teammates. Let’s give an example. On the football pitch, your left defence has made an incredible break up the field after a successful tackle. They’re doing a great job, getting the ball up towards your goal. But their brilliant run has left a spot open in defence, leaving your goalkeeper undefended on one side. It is important that you see the gap and cover it, in case your team lose the ball and finds yourselves defending again.
Having the soft skills to understand the way your team all work together, cover each other's backs and play a role in a bigger machine, is vital in the professional world. This emotional intelligence makes individuals vital team members and ensures that teams will achieve success.
Playing sports as part of a team inspires a love of team effort. When we watch the Actonians play, we can see the connection between the women, the friendships they have developed and the way that they feel inspired by one another to do their best. Playing and especially winning together helps people to understand the values of working together.
Professionals who play team sports often carry this love of team into the workplace. They are motivated to work hard, not only for themselves but for their teammates and the joint reputation of their team and business.
Playing fast-paced sports like football is a great way to learn team-focused decisiveness. To explain, we characterise this as the ability to individually make decisions which are for the good of the whole. Let’s use another analogy. You are a striker and you are getting very close to the goal, but you don’t have a completely clear shot. You have a teammate on your left and on your right, who present options. What do you do? Obviously, you don’t have time here to consult your team so you have to decide on your own, assessing whether the team stands a better chance of scoring if you pass, or if you shoot.
Once again, decisions in the professional world don’t normally need to be made as hastily as on a sports pitch, but learning how to make the best decisions with a team in mind is hugely valuable. Similarly, it is important to be able to make your own decisions and add value, not always depending on your team for guidance. Understanding when to delegate (pass the ball) or when to tackle a task or problem yourself (shoot) is essential to good team play at work.
We have been honoured to support the Actonians for the past few years and are grateful to see them demonstrate some incredible teamwork principles in the sporting arena.
Jackson Sims Jackson Sims Recruitment, specialists in Block & Estate Management, Build to Rent (BTR), Facilities Management and Financial & Accounting Services, is a Real Estate Recruitment Company operating in the UK and Asia with offices in London Manchester and Singapore. Through our extensive network and with the latest technology, we are able to create the right future for both our clients and candidates.Should you be a candidate or client working in property management we have a multitude of recruitment services that can be tailored to you.