“Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much.” -Hellen Keller
First of all, why would you want to be a team player? What’s in it for you?
Hilsoft would never have built our first ERP product without the team of five people who made it. My brother and I who developed the general ledger, I did the front-end, and my brother did the back-end. Our cousin Neil was the one who continued the accounts payable module and our dear friend Shotie who made the accounts receivable module. Later on, Bob joined us who helped us in the initial client implementations. All were young engineers who were passionate and playful about what we do.
We worked hard at day time and played basketball and video games at night. We were a team who has a deep level of relationship. Sometimes we argue, but at the end of the day, I believe we loved each other.
When they all left the company sometime in 2004, I single-handedly tried to operate the business with the assistance of my uncle abroad, partners and valued employees that came in and out of the company. Yes, I was able to have small wins but also small losses, up and down like a roller coaster ride, but it never came to a point where I wanted the company to be. I never had a core team until just a few years ago when I accepted the truth that I cannot do it alone. We grew 400% right after and now continue to grow while I empower our team to strive for impact and results.
“Talent wins games, but teamwork and intelligence win championships.” -This quote from Michael Jordan hits me while I write this.
So if you want to be good then maybe you don’t need to be a team player, but if you’re going to be great and achieve great results, then it is about time to learn how to be.
Here are some creative ways on how to be a team player.
- Believe in the power of a team. The story above was somehow proof of the power of a team by believing that helping out your team in solving a problem will result in a macro-level positive result.
- Actually “Care.” You can never fake caring. People will see it and feel it. Practice loving-kindness with people in general, and special care with your team and even their families.
- Be self-aware of your strength and weaknesses. Let go of your ego. Share with the team what you know and what you don’t know. Then compliment each other by helping them out where they are weak and vice-versa.
- Align with one objective. With Hilsoft, we aim to continuously develop and improve our products that are useable and make our customers look forward to more. Regardless if one engineer is assigned directly to one client and the other one is independently assigned to another, the team develop and improve one base product for all.
- Play. Have fun. Build a positive community. Go out and make your team your second family.
This article is a tribute to Bob Abraham (the guy in front), one of our pioneering team member and a friend who passed away last year due to a health issue. Thank you, brother.