In my leadership development work, I find insight from many areas of my life. When I sang with a jazz ensemble, I was amazed to find how many things I could learn to improve my team’s work. Here’s how to jazz up your teamwork – you’ll improve it in a snap!
Members of a jazz ensemble each work hard to improve their own skills and knowledge for the part they play. They know that their personal growth will lead to the growth of the team. Then, they are ready to improvise their way to better teamwork.
Jazz musicians are great collaborators. Each time they perform a song, they encourage each other to create new passages, improvise, and riff. To make it work on the fly, listening to each other is critical. They take turns as a soloist, and the other members support the music by embellishing and backing them up. That way, the soloist can stretch and create.
So, jazz up your teamwork – it’s fun and productive! Take turns being the soloist. Try these tips with your co-workers:
- Leadership and support roles are flexible and dynamic – take turns.
- Stay in the moment, suspend judgment, and work with what is happening.
- Risks are resources for new ideas and opportunities.
- Seek diversity in your team – you don’t want everyone good at the same job.
- Support and enjoy everyone’s contribution, and watch the energy build.
- Play! Teamwork is fun and enriching.
- Your audience (customers) expect surprise and innovation.
So, jazz up your teamwork by thinking like a jazz musician. You’ll improve your creativity, teamwork, and FUN – in a snap. You haven’t peaked yet!