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The Art of Seamless Collaboration: Elevating Team Building Skills for Managers

  • By Sheldon Kawarsky
  • September 20, 2023

team building skills

High-performing teams are crucial for company growth and sustainability, but they don’t exist in a vacuum. They’re the product of effective team building skills, which every manager should have.

Communication, problem-solving, and delegating are just a few of the essential skills for managing a team. Leaders must also be able to inspire trust and loyalty among team members. And with the pandemic-led rise in remote workforces, strengthening these skills in managers is more important than ever.

In this blog post, we’ll run down the must-have team building skills for managers and provide an overview of management’s role in team building.

What Are Team Building Skills?

How do you transform a group of relatively unfamiliar coworkers into a solid unit? You need the skills to start building from the ground up.

Team building skills are the traits and aptitudes necessary to form cohesive teams. They allow leaders to organize, guide, and motivate employees toward achieving company goals.

Team building increases employee morale and engagement, which in turn builds productivity, creativity, and innovation.

Essential Aspects of Team Collaboration

Team collaboration occurs when employees work collectively to complete a project or task. Each member brings their unique skill set to the table, and everyone feels their contributions are valued.

Some essential features of team collaboration include:

  • Common goals
  • Complementary skills
  • Coordination of activities
  • Open communication
  • Trust
  • Accountability

The Role of Managers in Team Building

Fairly or not, a team’s success often reflects the manager’s leadership style. Managers are pivotal in establishing and nurturing workplace relationships that lead to long-lasting team success.

Creating a Positive Work Environment

Managers should strive to maintain a positive workplace for employees. This attitude makes team members feel excited about coming into the office (or logging in from home) and energizes them to perform at their best for the success of the whole.

Facilitating Communication

Clear and easy communication channels are critical for team collaboration. Creating a dedicated place where teammates can converse about specific assignments, report their progress, or address problems will facilitate positive interactions.

Empowering Teammates through Task Delegation

Teams work harmoniously when each member has a defined task they are responsible for executing. By delegating tasks, managers allow employees to take ownership of their responsibilities and hold themselves accountable for the results.

Building Trust and Relationships

The strongest relationships are built on mutual trust and respect. Managers can promote trust and respect among team members by encouraging honesty and transparency. This may include providing frequent opportunities for feedback exchanges but prioritizing constructive and supportive conversations.

Resolving Team Conflicts

Settling internal conflicts fairly and decisively signals to the team that each person’s standpoint matters and that management is committed to keeping the team unified.

Nurturing Diversity and Inclusion

Acknowledging and valuing team members’ different backgrounds, perspectives, and cultural practices helps nurture a workplace of diversity and inclusion, which is especially important in today’s global workplace.

Recognizing Achievements (Motivating the Team)

One effective way of cultivating a unified team is to recognize and celebrate the group’s achievements. Showing appreciation for the team’s hard work can boost their motivation and confidence.

Leading by Example

Managers are the guidepost the team will look to in their behaviours, performance, and decision-making. Modelling expectations may have a greater impact than simply “talking the talk.”

Empowering Team Members through Training

An additional way to empower team members is to support their learning and growth through training. Employees who feel supported in their career development will want to use those new skills for the betterment of the team and the company.

Essential Team Building Skills for Managers

Savvy hiring managers know that leaders need a combination of hard and soft skills to manage their teams effectively. Team building skills are soft, or interpersonal skills managers use to grow relationships with and between employees. They ultimately make for stronger, more engaged teams.

Let’s review nine essential team building skills in detail.


Maybe the most important of team leadership skills is that communication skills help leaders set team goals and expectations, offer and solicit group feedback, and keep everyone updated on the latest news and developments.

Emotional Intelligence

A much-talked-about but often misunderstood skill, emotional intelligence is the ability to recognize and manage one’s own emotions while also influencing the emotions of others. Managers with emotional intelligence keep their composure during high-pressure situations and instead work to understand their team members’ needs and concerns.

Conflict Resolution

No matter how coordinated a team is, there are bound to be disagreements between coworkers. Good managers won’t hesitate to tackle the issue head-on, acting as mediators to resolve the conflict. They’re able to listen objectively to both sides and help devise an agreeable solution that minimizes negative impact.

Task Delegation

The ability to redirect tasks to other team members frees up the manager’s time to focus on higher-level (“big picture”) items and encourages collaborative teamwork and the development of new skills.

Active Listening

Active listening is about listening to understand rather than to respond. It requires being fully present with the speaker and picking up on the meaning behind their words. This listening technique makes team members feel seen and heard, so they’re confident voicing their opinions and ideas.

Collaborative Problem-Solving & Decision-Making

Solving work-related problems as a team aligns everyone with a shared objective. Leaders with great team management skills make it a point to gather the team together, seek each member’s input, and examine all options. Collectively deciding on the best alternative for the group makes everyone feel included and on equal footing with management.

Time Management

Leaders who excel at effectively managing the team’s time prioritize tasks to successfully complete group projects, communicate clear goals and objectives to ensure everyone is on the same page, and set realistic but firm deadlines to keep workers on track.

Presentation and Business Storytelling

Good presentation and business storytelling skills are beneficial in group meetings. They help managers organize their ideas and information in a way that keeps team members engaged and enthusiastic about the topic. Enthusiasm translates to better team morale and productivity.


Managers create team accountability by adopting a system where all members accept responsibility for delivering the highest quality work, meeting deadlines, communicating the status of their tasks or projects, and sharing any work-related apprehensions. This level of transparency and open communication builds trust between team members.

Develop Team Building Skills in Your Managers and Leaders with TSSG

Building teams that work together smoothly and collaboratively is necessary for any successful company. Invest in leadership training that includes exercises in team building. The Soft Skills Group (TSSG) provides soft skills training for managers that will help them build successful teams for your business. Contact us today to learn more about our workshops and classes.

Sheldon Kawarsky

Sheldon has over 20 years of experience holding manager and director roles in the private and academic sectors, focusing on business development and fostering relationships with companies, universities, government organizations, and venture capitalists. His strength is in relationship building and clarifying the needs of clients to ensure their training maximizes their return on investment.