June 2011  
UpWrite Press Writing eTips

Teaming It—Working with Others

Team projects, including group writing, are common in the workplace. If you have been assigned to work on such a project, you might be wondering about the best way to begin. Here are some tips to help you and your team work together for a positive result.

  • Establish a hierarchy. Who’s in charge or, better put, who will be responsible for the outcome? Although you are working as equals, someone has to have the final say, or at least mediate the final vote. Establish how you will arrive at conclusions as a team.
  • Maintain perspective. Remember that your project will reflect on your company. Keep it in line with the company’s mission, objectives, and values.
  • Focus on progress. Keep things moving. If some detail is slowing the work, table the issue for the moment and push ahead. Block out the whole project first and then finalize any troublesome details.
  • Expect professionalism. Focus on collaboration and defuse any negative attitudes that might otherwise deflate the entire team. Give each team member’s ideas equal consideration. Even if an idea is not feasible, use it to continue brainstorming other workable solutions.
  • Use praise. Credit team members for helpful input and avoid divisive criticism.

Always remember that a team is made up of individuals with unique skills and talents. If you can encourage cooperation and efficiently pool the talent, your team can achieve great results.

For professional business-writing tips, see Write for Business: A Compact Guide to Writing and Communicating in the Workplace—just one of the handy business-writing materials from UpWrite Press.

Teacher Tips

On-the-job training is an effective tool for educating the workforce. There are several ways to set this up:

  • Apprenticeships and mentoring programs assign a worker to a seasoned employee who models the job requirements in a learn-as-you-go situation.
  • Self-directed learning strategies have new workers complete online training programs at designated times or at the workers’ convenience.
  • Corporate retreats offer in-service programs in a nonwork environment.

That Little Extra

Do you sometimes feel at the end of the day like the ceiling has fallen in, crushing your spirit? Don’t leave the office on a negative note. Instead, before you leave, take just a moment to reflect on the day and find one bright spot to focus on. Maybe you clinched an elusive sale, received a compliment from your supervisor, laughed with a coworker over coffee, felt the sun through an office window. Find something good and carry it home with you. Then relax and enjoy your evening, coming back to work the next day refreshed and ready to try, try again.

   

June Writers' Forum Topic

Here’s your chance to tell us how your work environment operates. Send us your responses to the forum question below, and we’ll print the most interesting in our eTips Mid-Month Mini.

According to a survey by the American Pet Products Manufacturers Association, one in five companies allows workers to bring their pets to work. How does your business stand on this issue? If your company does allow pets, what results have you noticed?

E-mail your response to writersforum@upwritepress.com. Write “June Writers’ Forum” in the subject line, and you could see your reply in the eTips Mid-Month Mini.

We Want to Hear from You

This is your chance to be part of the UpWrite Press newsletters and blogs. What writing topics do you want to hear about? Have you any favorite communications tips you’d like to share? What words do you constantly mix up? Send us your ideas and you could see your name in Writing eTips or the Mid-Month Mini.

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