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10 Ways You Can Be a Team Player

10 Ways You Can Be a Team Player


In work, as in sports, it’s not enough to know your position – you must be able to work with others.

In any medical office or environment, doing your specific job well is expected, but you work as a small part of a much larger whole. What does “teamwork” actually mean, and how can you help turn your hospital or clinic into a productive, supportive team? Let’s look at 10 common-sense ways you can improve your work, your relationships with your co-workers, and – ultimately – your career.


It goes without saying, but to reinforce the point we’re saying it anyway: If you don’t make a priority of telling your co-workers what they need to know, your interactions will never be productive. Someone encroaching on your responsibilities, or not living up to theirs? Unless you clearly tell them what you think, they’ll likely keep doing exactly what you don’t want them to do. This is a two-way street, so be prepared to hear feedback you might not have expected.



When you see a co-worker – or even your boss – struggling with a task or idea, how do you react? If you answered, “I go back to my work until they are done,” you lose two teamwork brownie points. The Golden Rule applies to all the tips in this article, but to none of the others as much as this. Taking a moment of your precious time to simply recognize someone else’s struggle – even if you can’t actually help out – and sympathize with them is one of the most important things you can do at work. It may seem like nothing to you, but encouraging them to see through the task or just get through the day is more powerful than you could ever know.


Just like the last point, recognizing someone else’s good work is crucial to fostering a strong sense of teamwork. Did someone on the floor have to deal with a belligerent patient (again)? Big successes are often celebrated with promotions and raises, but recognizing the little things and doing something as simple as congratulating them with home baked cookies or a card will strengthen your bonds.

Constructive Criticism Not Complaints

You know that person on your shift who’s always complaining about something? Is that person actually you? Instead of complaining about someone not doing something to code, or moaning about a particular workplace problem, try thinking up three ways things can be done better. Then? Then you’re back to our first tip: communicate those solutions.

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  • Photo_user_blank_big


    about 4 years ago


    last month we had team building day in the park.

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    about 4 years ago


    I like wise old owl's advice. I want to be a team leader. Thanks.

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    almost 5 years ago


    I have always tried my best to be a team player. And many times, you do end up helping the same people over and over and over, with no is difficult and stressful. As a manager, I have contemplated using this term for staff who refuse to help others when they are NOT busy. Maybe, someone can help me with a better way to phrase this. I appreciate any input. (experienced nurse, new manager)

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    about 5 years ago


    It is good to be a team player. However, most of the time it usually one who helps out others. While the others take advantage and never return the favor. They then depend on the help. I agree with WiseOld Owl. Management often uses the phrase, you are not a team player. This is their way to make you work even harder. Without breaks etc. When you ask the management for help you are told deal with it. We fellow nurses need to start sticking up for ourselves. Help a fellow co-worker, but if they do not return the favor then do not help them again. We need to stick together.

  • Owl_max50


    about 5 years ago


    The term 'team player' is WAY overused. I have heard 'you are not a team player' too many times from managers who sought to lower my self-esteem or resolve to provide safe patient care. No, I am NOT a team PLAYER, instead, I shall call myself and be proud to be referred to as a team LEADER!
    Keep the Faith, fellow nurses!

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