There are many different types of team players, and if you have managed a team for some time you have probably come to understand this. 

Not all players want to be up front and center, nor should they be, as that would hold back the entire team from gaining yardage. What is important to keep in mind is that all types of players are important and essential for creating a winning team.

When the positions and duties are not clearly understood by all team players, there are several issues that can happen and eventually take a toll on the team as a whole:

  1. The more visible, active players see the “less active” players as ones who are not pulling their weight on the team.
  2. The active players resent the “less active” players, which breaks down communication and teamwork.
  3. The active players consider their positions more important and therefore feel as though they are more valuable than the “less active” players.
  4. The “less active” players feel inferior and pressure from the more active players.
  5. The “less active” players begin to see their positions as having no real value, which leads to a feeling as though they do not bring value to the team.

If these five issues are not clearly identified and understood, then all of the team players will feel lack of support and leadership from the team leader. They lose respect and trust for management and become disillusioned with their positions.

Teams have playbooks that define all positions and their responsibilities. The playbook explains what is required from each position and how it relates to the team. Players read the book and gain an understanding of how every position contributes to the team’s functioning as a whole. This allows the coach to get everyone on the same page so the players have a better overall understanding of the plays and can go out and win the game.

If your team is having problems functioning, you might want to pull our your playbook, gather your team up, and review all positions, their purpose, function, and how they all relate to each other. Then review how each person affects the step-by-step plays that happen in the office every day.

A good review every now and then will keep your team a well-oiled working machine!

Tina DelBuono is a Practice Management Coach – mentoring doctors to manage their practices effectively through membership in the Top Practices Practice Management Institute. For more information, email us at [email protected] or call us at (717) 725-2679.

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