MCLS Third Thursday Twitter Chat: Team Building

with Beka Lemons, Library Director, Huntington City Township Public Library, Huntington, IN

  1. Welcome to our chat on Team Building! #mclschat
  2. @mclsorg @hctplbeka Hello Everybody! Looking forward to a great conversation today. #mclschat
  3. We'll be having a Q&A with @hctplbeka about team building. #mclschat
  4. Others feel free to jump in with your own ideas/questions/opinions #mclschat
  5. Before we start, tell us who is here, and where you are tweeting from. #mclschat
  6. Beth, Saginaw Valley State University in the thumb. #mclschat
  7. Hi everyone, I am looking forward to learning about team building today! #mclschat
  8. Q1. Why is building a good team important? #mclschat
  9. @mclsorg A1. No employee operates in a vacuum. The things we do affect other people all the time. #mclschat
  10. @hctplbeka @mclsorg A1. Great teams understand how all of the pieces fit together. #mclschat
  11. @mclsorg A1. Teams can also boost creativity and help you get things done faster. #mclschat
  12. Q2. What does a successful team look like? #mclschat
  13. A2. Successful teams are cooperative, respectful, helpful, and selfless. #mclschat
  14. @hctplbeka @mclsorg A2. The best teams sacrifice for each other and for the greater good. #mclschat
  15. Q3. How do you build a good team? #mclschat
  16. @mclsorg A3. Good teams are built through open communication. #mclschat
  17. @mclsorg A3. Talking about our challenges and strengths upfront and honestly builds trust and respect. #mclschat
  18. @mclsorg What qualities have you all found in great teams? Or in really bad ones? #mclschat
  19. @mclsorg @hctplbeka Absolutely, a diverse team allows for a lot of creative ideas to come into play #mclschat
  20. Q4. How do you get everyone on board? #mclschat
  21. @mclsorg A4. Get the staff involved. Building from the bottom up is the most effective way to get buy-in from everyone. #mclschat
  22. @AnnaZichiCurtis You can build teams across departments. Get people involved in things they might not otherwise do. #mclschat
  23. @AnnaZichiCurtis For example, a strategic planning team could be 7-8 people from all different levels and different jobs #mclschat
  24. Q5. What if some of your staff are not good team players? #mclschat
  25. @mclsorg A5. People with bad attitudes are not good employees. #mclschat
  26. @mclsorg A5. If being a team is the expectation, they need to be on board or they need to go away. #mclschat
  27. @mclsorg That is a very black and white answer. There are strategies to get people on board. #mclschat
  28. @AnnaZichiCurtis First, find out what their issue is. You can't manage the behavior if you don't know why. #mclschat
  29. @AnnaZichiCurtis For people who are control freaks it is best to give them something to do that makes them feel important. #mclschat
  30. @AnnaZichiCurtis For those who don't participate, try to draw them in by finding out what they like to do and give them projects. #mclschat
  31. What about employees who are just angry and don't like change? #mclschat
  32. @AnnaZichiCurtis I have found that most people don't mind change but they mind the process of change. #mclschat
  33. @hctplbeka @AnnaZichiCurtis Try to make the process as easy and transparent as you can and keep them involved at every stage. #mclschat
  34. I think this particular person doesn't like change because it means more is expected of them #mclschat
  35. @AnnaZichiCurtis For those who feel entitled you may have to manipulate them into feeling important. give them big projects #mclschat
  36. @AnnaZichiCurtis I think we have all been trained to fear change. That isn't something that changes easily. #mclschat
  37. @AnnaZichiCurtis Be clear with your expectations but also take the time to understand where they are coming from. #mclschat
  38. Q6. What are the biggest challenges to building a good team? #mclschat
  39. @mclsorg A6. You will always have different points of view. You can’t put people in a group and expect them to think the same way #mclschat
  40. @mclsorg A6. We all have different lenses that we see the world through. We need to understand and respect that #mclschat
  41. @mclsorg A6. The easy answer to this is to say that people are the problem so we have to learn how to manage people #mclschat
  42. Q7. How do you keep a team motivated? #mclschat
  43. @hctplbeka @mclsorg A7. Nobody wants to work hard to achieve something that doesn’t have any meaning to them. #mclschat
  44. @mclsorg Has anyone else found things that can be motivating for a team? #mclschat
  45. @mclsorg It's often not about money or praise or achievement but about personal satisfaction. #mclschat
  46. Q8. How do you hold teams accountable? #mclschat
  47. @mclsorg A8. Have clear expectations. Create ground rules with your teams and allow them to keep each other accountable. #mclschat
  48. @mclsorg A8. Keep checking on the team’s output. Adjust as you need to before the whole thing goes wrong. #mclschat
  49. @hctplbeka @mclsorg What happens if the whole thing DOES go wrong? #mclschat
  50. @mclsorg @hctplbeka Don't panic! Go back to your original goals for the team and reset the whole thing. Setbacks are for learning #mclschat
  51. @hctplbeka @mclsorg I want to reiterate that goals are super important for teams to function. If you don't have them make them now #mclschat
  52. @mclsorg A9. Create milestones and celebrate them in a public way. Celebrate other small successes along the way too. #mclschat
  53. @mclsorg A9. Don’t wait for a formal recognition. Daily praise is usually the best reward that you can give. #mclschat
  54. @AnnaZichiCurtis Yes, we have team charters for every team that we can identify. It sets goals and expectations for the team #mclschat
  55. Q10. What are the critical elements of teamwork success? #mclschat
  56. @mclsorg A10. Team success depends on the individual members. #mclschat
  57. @mclsorg A10. Get the right people in the right places doing the things that they are best at. #mclschat
  58. @hctplbeka @mclsorg A10. Remember that leaders can come from anywhere in the organization. Allow your leaders to lead. #mclschat
  59. Q11. What if a team becomes dysfunctional? #mclschat
  60. @mclsorg A11. Teams are usually dysfunctional because they no longer serve a purpose or their goal isn’t clear. #mclschat
  61. @mclsorg A11. A dysfunctional team should be scrapped and reformed with a different goal. Don’t try to save a sinking ship. #mclschat
  62. Q12. What makes an effective team leader? #mclschat
  63. @mclsorg A12. Effective leadership varies based on the goal of the team. #mclschat
  64. @hctplbeka @mclsorg A12. In most cases a good leader will make themselves a servant of the team #mclschat
  65. @hctplbeka @mclsorg A12. If you have a team that has strict deadlines it is okay to have an authoritarian leader. #mclschat
  66. @hctplbeka @mclsorg A12. If you are looking to generate ideas, a leader needs to be more hands off and encourage participation. #mclschat
  67. @mclsorg In most of my committees I like to rotate the facilitator position to give everyone some leadership experience. #mclschat
  68. @hctplbeka @mclsorg What sort of training do you give to those first-time facilitators to prepare them to lead? #mclschat
  69. @hctplbeka @mclsorg I usually lead by examples for a couple of months and then let them take over. #mclschat
  70. @mclsorg @hctplbeka Do you seek out those who are reluctant to lead, or just wait for people to volunteer for the role? #mclschat
  71. @mclsorg @hctplbeka As an introvert I don't like to force people to do things they are comfortable with so usually volunteers. #mclschat
  72. @mclsorg Does anyone in the group have specific questions that they would like to ask? #mclschat
  73. @hctplbeka Could you tell us a little about your background in team building? #mclschat
  74. What is your favorite part of working colaboratively? @hctplbeka @mclsorg #MCLSchat
  75. @MCLSMegan @hctplbeka @mclsorg I often find that my best ideas come when I am talking to other people. Brainstorming is great. #mclschat
  76. @mclsorg @hctplbeka Years ago, I worked in a library that went from great teams to a very authority driven structure. #mclschat
  77. @hctplbeka @mclsorg I have seen the difference that participation and staff buy-in can make so I encourage teamwork at every level #mclschat
  78. Our time is almost up for today's chat. Thank you to Beka Lemons @hctpbeka for all your great advice on building teams! #mclschat
  79. @mclsorg Thank you for inviting me! If anyone has more questions feel free to email me at #mclschat
  80. Our next chat is on December 15 at 2pm. We will have an open chat about building a "library of things" #mclschat
  81. Join us then to talk about fishing poles, roombas, cake pans--and all the other cool "things" you are loaning. #mclschat