What Makes a Good Team? Unveiling the Dangers of a Disconnected Team

Connection is a big part of what makes a good team. A connected team will be more motivated, engaged, and productive than one that isn’t. According to Zippia research, companies with a focus on communication and collaboration have lowered turnover by 50%, and employees are 17% more satisfied with their job when they collaborate at work. 

Disconnected teams on the other hand have a plethora of dangers. Disconnected teams are less engaged, motivated, creative, and productive than their connected counterparts. It’s easy for things to go awry when communication is poor, people aren’t on the same page, and people aren’t willing to collaborate. 

We talked about the dangers of disconnected teams and the importance of communication and collaboration in our most recent episode of the Team Building Saves the World podcast. We sat down with Dr. Jody Carrington, a psychologist, best-selling author, and public speaker that focuses on helping teams overcome human-centered problems. 

She mentioned the dangers of a disconnected team, saying, “If we are increasingly in this place where we are disconnected, we are losing access to the ability to develop those skills. And so small talk, being able to strike up a conversation, give a compliment, feels weird or awkward.”

If you want to know how to improve connection in the workplace and how leaders can build connection in a disconnected workplace, then you have come to the right place. We’ll cover all that and more in this blog. 

Understanding the Elements of a Good Team

First, let’s take a moment to look at the elements of a good team and what makes a good team. There are certain things that every good team will have, and knowing what they are can help you build the team you want and need. 

One of the most important elements of a good team is open and effective communication. You and your team members need to be comfortable communicating openly and honestly. Employees shouldn’t fear bringing up concerns or ideas, and management should be willing and ready to communicate with their team members. Communication is something that every business and team should focus on. 

Tying into communication, there also needs to be trust and respect. Employees should be able to trust each other and their leaders, whether that means opening up about issues or trusting them to do their jobs well. Team members need to be confident that their fellow team members are doing well and respect their efforts. The same goes for management as well. 

Another important aspect of a good team is a diverse group of people with different skills and perspectives. We all have our own strengths and weaknesses, and a good team embraces that. Some people may be less creative but more attentive to details, and others may be more creative and less focused on details. Having those different skill sets and perspectives creates a more well-rounded and cohesive team

One last element of a good team is having clear goals and a shared purpose. Teams need something to unite around to bring them together, and that’s what clear goals and a shared purpose are for. If everyone feels like they are playing an integral role in achieving the goal, they will be more connected, motivated, engaged, and driven. 

The Dangers of a Disconnected Team

So what can happen if your team is disconnected? There are a huge number of downsides to having a disconnected team, so let’s take a look at a few of them.

Isolation and Disengagement of Team Members

Isolation and disengagement is one of the biggest problems with disconnected teams. As mentioned above, communication is a key part of a successful team. You cannot collaborate and work together to achieve goals if you are isolated and aren’t communicating. 

There are deeper issues with isolation and disengagement as well. People that are isolated and disengaged don’t feel connected at work. They aren’t motivated to do their very best every day, and they aren’t invested in their work. That ultimately means lower quality work coming from your team. 

High Turnover and Talent Loss

It should come as no surprise that disconnected teams have higher turnover rates. If employees are isolated and not invested in their work, they are going to be more likely to look for other jobs. Employees want to feel seen, cared about, and acknowledged, but that can’t happen without a connected workplace that puts people first.

Low Productivity, Efficiency, and Creativity

Another downside of a disconnected team is lower productivity, efficiency, and creativity. Again, employees are their most productive, efficient, and creative when they feel like an integral part of a team working towards a common goal. 

Dr. Carrington shared an anecdote that really exemplifies this point. “We can expedite policy and procedure all we want, but if your team doesn’t feel seen, they will not rise. One of my favorite hockey coaches said, ‘You should see how fast I can get a kid to skate when I know the name of their dog.’”

Missed Opportunities for Innovation and Growth

Another danger of a disconnected team are missed opportunities for and growth. Building off the previous points, your team will be more creative and productive if they are connected, meaning more innovation and growth. However, the inverse is also true; your team will be less innovative and grow less if they aren’t connected. 

what makes a good team

Strategies for Building a Strong and Connected Team

Now, let’s look at a few strategies for building a strong and connected team. This is not a conclusive list, but these tips will help you start developing better, stronger teams. 

Foster Open and Transparent Communication

This should be obvious by now, but open and transparent communication is key to building a strong and connected team. You need to foster a corporate culture that prioritizes and emphasizes communication. 

Managers and leaders need to lead by example. Make yourself open to communication, and don’t judge people harshly. Give constructive criticism and feedback as necessary, and support your employees when they need it. If you are open and communicate freely with them, they will do the same. 

Make Friendships

Having friends at work is incredibly important. Recent information from Gallup shows that having a workplace best friend is strongly tied to key business outcomes. Team members need to have friends that they enjoy working with, talking to, and being around. It makes a huge difference in terms of satisfaction, engagement, and productivity. 

However, it is important to make sure that workplace friendships are positive and don’t end up creating cliques or toxicity. Leaders should actively make sure that cliques aren’t forming or that people don’t end up in their own silos. It’s important to make sure employees have the chance to socialize with each other and build friendships across departments, teams, and more. 

Invest in Team Development and Training

Another great strategy for developing connected teams is by investing in them via development and training. This has numerous benefits. To start, the act of investing in your team has an impact in and of itself. It shows employees that you care about them, their future, and their development. 

Beyond that though, you get the benefit of the training and development as well. If you do an exercise focused on communication for example, you get to show employees you care about them, as well as help your employees improve their communication skills. 

At TeamBonding, we have numerous team building events and activities that are great for building a connected team. Our corporate social responsibility programs, as they encourage teams to unite around a common charitable goal. And if your team is hybrid or remote, there are still options. We have many virtual events as well that are perfect for remote teams.  

Regular Meetings and Check-Ins

Lastly, regular meetings and check-ins can help your team become more connected. These meetings and check-ins are a great way to ensure that everyone has their voice heard and is united around the business’ goals. 

When hosting meetings, make sure everyone gets a chance to speak. And as mentioned previously, make sure that people don’t fear speaking up. Encourage people to listen and provide constructive feedback instead of ignoring or ridiculing them. And with check-ins, make sure you are genuinely listening to their concerns.

The Advantages of a Connected Team

To wrap things up, let’s quickly talk about the advantages of a connected team. The pros should be pretty obvious by now, but it’s important to understand just how beneficial a connected team can be. 

From a business perspective, a connected team has many advantages. Connected teams are more productive, engaged, motivated, and creative. That means better results, increased efficiency, more innovation, and much more. All of those are big benefits you don’t want to miss. 

Connected teams also have less turnover. When employees feel connected and invested in their work, they are much less likely to leave. A connected team gives you the opportunity to build an experienced team that has years of experience in your industry/business. 

Another benefit is that connected teams cultivate a positive work culture. Connected teams communicate and support each other, two key elements of a positive work culture. By helping make your team more connected, you are also helping better your work environment. 

Help Your Team Feel Connected

The best teams are highly connected. They communicate, collaborate, and work together to achieve common goals. Connected teams are more efficient, engaged, motivated, and ultimately are better for your business. Help your team feel connected by investing in them with TeamBonding. We have an array of team building events and activities that are perfect for building a connected team. So get in touch with us today and start

building a highly connected team that will help you achieve your goals.

Amanda Deiratani

Team Contributor

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