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  • Writer's pictureChristine King

The Key to Success is the Right Team and Team Dynamic

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Most dairy farmers benefit from being the children and grandchildren of farmers. They are steeped in the dawn-to-dusk ranching experience from a young age and inherit their parents' and grandparents' deep generational knowledge. I started dairy farming in my late 30s after wandering through a barn at the Addison County Field Days. I didn’t have any farmers in my family, but that was when I caught the dairy bug.


So, when I first tried my hand at a dairy cow showing, I had no relevant knowledge or experience. What I did have, though, was the determination to succeed and the willingness to ask for help. I relied heavily on experienced dairy farmers to show me the way in those early days. After a few short years and abundant tips and tricks from other farmers, I started to beat them at their own game.


While this is just one example, I have found that success in life, regardless of the goal, is based on looking for, discovering, and nurturing the right resources. But is there a universal key to achieving success? I believe so.


What is the key to achieving success?

In my last post, I discussed the three personal characteristics you need to succeed. I’m here to answer, “What is the key to achieving success?”. The key to achieving success is to surround yourself with the right people because when you have the right team, you can succeed in your mission. I believe there’s great truth in the saying, “If you want to go fast, go alone. But if you want to go far, go as a team.”


Why having the right team is crucial to achieving your goals

The adage "two heads are better than one" applies to achieving goals. No individual is as intelligent, creative, or productive on their own as they can be in a group. When you bring together individuals with diverse perspectives, experiences, and expertise, you can tap into a wealth of collective intelligence. Each team member has unique strengths that contribute to the team's success. Embracing this diversity of thought can lead to more creative and productive solutions, propelling you closer to your goals at a faster pace.


There’s no “ego” in “team”

As part of a team, it's vital to prioritize the mission over individual egos. If a fellow team member excels at a task, allow them to take the lead and determine how you can best support the team in other ways. It’s also important not to solely define success as being the most intelligent person in the room. Other equally essential strengths exist. For instance, my strength lies in bringing out the best in others and helping them realize their full potential. By creating a collaborative environment, we can inspire our teammates to make their greatest contributions, and that’s how everyone can win.


Tips for working with others and building a winning team

Now, working with others comes with potential challenges. Throughout my career, I’ve worked with individuals who seemed uninterested in collaborating. I’ve experienced team members with vastly different working strategies and clashing personalities. But what’s most important to remember is to focus on the mission and its achievement. For any great mission, collaboration is essential. Here are some tips for collaborating with others and establishing a winning team:


  • Pursue new team members based on talent gaps. Determine which skills or abilities your team requires to achieve its goals, determine the talent gaps within your team, and then pursue new talent based on your assessment. For example, you might seek a new team member that is an expert at nurturing customer relationships or leveraging a specific software platform.


  • Appreciate individuality within a team. Each person on your team will have a unique personality with different perspectives, temperaments, strengths, and weaknesses. By getting to know each individual, you can determine how to create an environment and dynamic that encourages them to put forth their best efforts and helps the team achieve its goals.


  • Working relationships work both ways. Just like friendships or romances, professional relationships should be mutually beneficial. When you consider how to help others, they may be more willing to help you.


  • Be a catalyst. Always aim to bring out the best in your team members. Know when you need to encourage and challenge them. Find the balance they need and focus your energy and time there.


  • Accept that you will be working with others who don’t want to work with you. In these instances, aim to get on the same page by finding something you have in common or learning what motivates them. Remember, there is always something that we have in common. And if all else fails, stay focused on the goal you share and how working together is essential to achieving it.


  • Get everyone behind the mission. Motivating team members to put forth their best efforts is challenging if they don’t feel invested in the project. Giving people a sense of the mission’s impact and a share of ownership in its achievement is vital. Involve others in the planning stages of your project so they can help shape and take ownership of the project.


Conclusion

Your team's proper support is crucial to whether or not you achieve your goals. When I began as a dairy farmer, I read numerous books, but more importantly, I sought experts to answer the hundreds of questions I had about farming, milking, and showing. I reached out to them, fired off my questions, and listened intently. Those farmers’ support enabled me to achieve what I couldn’t have achieved alone.


Whether your goal is to develop a product or service that changes the world or establish a company with a huge market cap, assembling the right team and creating the right team dynamic is essential to your success.


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