Why Working in Teams Makes You a Better Candidate for a Job


Teamwork. It’s one of those words that’s bandied around a lot, often by over exuberant managers looking to fire up staff, and even families at home to try and get all the chores done in time for Sunday night dinner.

But why is it such a focus of leaders in whatever environment that we’re in? Isn’t high individual achievement a greater accomplishment, when it comes to evaluating a person? Isn’t remarkable inner strength, tenacity, capacity to learn, and innate talent greater qualities when it comes to landing a job?

As it turns out, maybe not.

Why teamwork turns hiring managers on

Why do managers love people who work well in teams? It makes their jobs easier of course! When going for an interview, the person hiring you is likely to be thinking in the back of their mind, “How will this person fit into my current team?”. Perhaps more important than your experience, is how well you are going to gel with the people that you’ll be working with – and they know that.

A fish out of water is not likely to be effective in the position that they are going for. They may feel ostracized from the team, and may not be a good investment for the company, perhaps even underperforming and leaving the company early.

Even if you’re an ideal candidate in other ways, if they just can’t see you as part of the team, you may just not be hired.

Why teamwork trumps individual abilities

Fantastic in your individual pursuits? Current manager saying, “Yeah, we just leave her/him to their own devices and they deliver time and again”? It doesn’t mean that you’re going to perform well in a new position.

You’ve probably heard the saying, “The whole is greater than the sum of its parts”. This means that a team of mediocre players can actually produce fantastic results, if they work really well together. On the flip side, a team of highly talented individuals can produce shoddy results, if they have a dysfunctional team environment.

Teamwork is essential in the workplace for repeatable, excellent results – even if a couple of members of a team are replaced.

Why extracurricular teamwork makes you a standout

We all have to work in teams at work. Whether it’s a team of 30, or 5, or just you and a manager. It can be hard to gauge, from a hiring manager’s perspective, just how well you worked in teams at work. It could be that the excellent statistics on your resume come from a team member of yours putting in a huge amount of work that the rest of you got to share the spoils of – it can be impossible to tell from an outsider’s perspective.

That’s why hiring managers look outside the workplace for team interactions. That means team sports, community boards, groups that you’re a participant in, and other extracurricular team activities. These items on your resume show that you’re not just “forced” to be in teams at work, you actively seek out and enjoy being in them.

Want to know more tips about preparing to land a new role? Contact us as Genesis IT on 02 9236 4500 or via info@genesisrecruit.com.au to learn how to stand out from the pack.


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