Being A Team Player

Fresh out of university, one of my first jobs was working for the United Nations in Geneva.

I quickly felt bombarded with tedious rules and dull training sessions explaining where to properly store and tag documents, update internal tracking systems and communicate with others.

Frankly, I didn’t have any time for this ‘administrative crap’. I was too busy doing the work.

My first performance review said my work was good, but I wasn’t being a ‘team player’.

Ouch! That stung.

That single phrase ‘being a team player’ resonated. It didn’t only compel me to change my ways, but I’ve found it’s useful to change the motivation of participants in many communities since.

Team players don’t consider themselves too important or too busy to properly tag, store, and share their work.

Whenever we work on an internal community or a project where members are sharing vast amounts of information (which require some tedious rules), we spread the message as clearly as possible – this is what team players do.

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