When you watch a good team in action, it’s easy to size up their success as a result of everyone being similar or getting along. News flash: those elements aren’t necessary for a good team! In fact, most teams are not that way! The most cohesive, victorious teams are made up of a variety of individuals with different personalities, ideas, and work styles.

What makes a good team?

Members’ willingness to collaborate and commitment to the mission are crucial aspects to a good team. Too many people think that they have a right to enjoy what they do and like the people they work with, when in fact these aspects are just a bonus. They shouldn’t be what motivates you and they definitely aren’t necessary for a good team. What happens when you’re up against a deadline and suddenly two team members aren’t getting along? What happens when you lose your presentation for a really important client due to a computer glitch? Mishaps, roadblocks, personality clashes–these can all potentially slow down (even hinder) progress, but a good team pushes through, figures it out, learns from their mistakes, and even thrives because of them.

Cultivating a good team means committing to the cause and focusing on reaching the finish line with excellence. This may mean going above and beyond and putting in extra hours. Or it may mean constructively challenging a slow co-worker to work faster. It may mean looking past racial, gender, or age differences in order to recognize and utilize the valuable input someone is bringing to the team.

Ultimately, a good team is comprised of varying skill sets and personalities working together to accomplish something together. There is potential in every team to be a great team. With the right attitude and work ethic, unity and success could be just around the corner.