Human Capital Management Blog

Strategies for HCM Professionals

5 lessons the World Cup can teach us about teamwork

FIFA World CupBy Kristina Cleary, Global Vice President Marketing at Ceridian.

As my team and I at Ceridian prepare to host over 2,000 Human Capital Management professionals this July in Las Vegas for our annual user conference, INSIGHTS, I leverage remaining downtime to watch the Women’s World Cup. While watching these tremendous athletes and learning about their coaches and leadership styles, I can’t help but reflect on lessons the world cup can teach us about teamwork, and how applicable they are to teams both in and out of the workplace.

Consider these top 5 takeaways:

Call for the ball (aka COMMUNICATE!)

There is no such thing as over-communication in the workplace, but communicating and communicating effectively are two different things.  Effective communication isn’t just choosing the right words, listening is just as important.

Understand your position (and the positions of your teammates)

When it comes to tackling a project at work, team members should know where they need to be to get things done. Just as important, each team member should understand each other’s roles and work styles to ensure they work effectively. On the soccer field, every player (whether a defender, midfielder, striker or otherwise) is playing their position for a reason. This is where coaches (or managers) come in. Their job is to ensure that each member is in the position that best suits their abilities.

 Don’t leave anyone behind

I have always loved this quote from Aristotle: “The whole is greater than the sum of its parts.” To me it means that every team member is important. Nobody is expendable. Every person has to be at his or her best to succeed, and it’s the team’s responsibility to make sure that nobody gets left behind.

Win and lose with grace

How you react as a team is important. Not everything will always go as planned. A team that is agile and able to learn from previous mistakes and failures will be stronger in the long run. Don’t let past problems impact future performance; learn and adjust!

Create a game plan

A great team is one with a strategy.  In the workplace, strategy is key in guiding people and molding them into star players. A team with a strategy also understands the market and what they are up against, and creates a game plan to help them lead in the marketplace.

Kristina ClearyKristina Cleary is Global Vice President Marketing at Ceridian. Kristina leads teams focused on Dayforce Product Marketing, Events and Industry Analyst Relations. Follow her on Twitter @KristinaCleary.

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