The benefits of building a cohesive tech team and six effective methods of doing this.
How to Build Tech Team Cohesion in the Workplace by Improving Culture and Morale
A cohesive tech team is a tech team that is primed for success. Employees feel connected, confident and aligned with project goals and overall company values, leading to efficient ways of working and communicating that minimise error and also keep morale high.
If you’re looking for how to build cohesion in a team in the tech industry, focusing on improving company culture and employee morale are excellent areas to focus on. Not only will you help to bring your teams closer together, but high morale and strong company culture have their own range of benefits as well.
In this article, we share some of the benefits of building a cohesive tech team and then give six effective methods of doing this by focusing on culture and morale at work.
What Is Team Cohesion in the Workplace?
One of the key benefits of building tech team cohesion is that it can have a significant impact on employee productivity. Research has found that companies that focus on creating a “connected culture” tend to have employees that are twice as productive as those with a different cultural focus. So when your staff feel more connected to one another, they’re likely to work much more efficiently, saving time and increasing engagement.
Collaboration goes hand in hand with workplace team cohesion, especially in the tech industry where projects are often worked on by multiple programmers, engineers and designers. This collaborative working has plenty of benefits according to one study, finding that employees who work together are 64% more likely to stay focused on a task for longer and have a higher success rate. Instead of your tech team members working independently, building cohesion means that collaborative work will not only be easier, but also more productive.
Not only will you benefit from a more productive workforce when you work on how to build team cohesion, but you’re also likely to see changes in the ideas that your team comes up with. It’s been found that collaboration in the workplace can lead to up to 15% more innovation, so by building a cohesive tech team, you’re making it much easier for this kind of valuable collaboration to happen.
When you have a cohesive tech team, employees are likely to work with you for longer, which is ideal both from a talent retention point of view and when it comes to reducing employee attrition. One survey found that 54% of employees have stayed with a company for “longer than their best interest” because they felt like they belonged to the workplace ‘community’. When your team is cohesive, you’ll find that team members will be much less likely to leave without careful consideration.
Better teams help to create a better brand image, especially when building team cohesion also means that you’re focusing on improving your company culture. If you put effort into creating a workplace where teams are connected and employees feel engaged, this reputation will really help with candidate attraction and developing a reputation as a good employer. This is supported by the fact that 92% of people say that they would consider accepting a new job offer if it was with a company that had a great reputation as a place to work.
The benefits of building a cohesive tech team aren’t just for the employer however; when employees work in a collaborative environment, they’re likely to be much happier at work. Research has found that when employees feel committed to working as part of an organisation, which is massively helped by strong team cohesion, they’re likely to feel less stressed at work and less anxious about their role.
How to Build Team Cohesion by Improving Culture and Morale
You can approach building or strengthening tech team cohesion in a variety of ways, but two of the best approaches involve focusing on improving team morale and company culture.
Employee morale is the overall attitude, outlook and emotional state of the people that work in a company. When employee morale is high, the overall workplace atmosphere tends to be better, leading to a range of benefits associated with increased happiness at work.
Company culture is the attitudes, values and ethos of an organisation, which impacts the work they do and their employee’s experience. Having a strong, positive company culture means developing a mission and approach to business that your employees feel connected to, which differentiates you from competitors, and which customers or clients are drawn to because of its unique qualities.
When your employees feel more positive at work, they’ll be happier and more motivated to work together and put effort into their professional relationships. Feeling aligned, inspired and appreciated through a strong company culture will also help with this, ensuring that your tech team is cohesive through a shared set of values and business goals.
Here are some of the best ways to build team cohesion by focusing on your workplace culture and employee morale.
Implement Clear Goals
An essential part of developing a strong culture at work is having business goals that all employees are aware of and understand as part of your company’s overall mission. Your goals are the driving force behind all of the work that your staff do, and if tech teams don’t properly understand what they’re working towards, they’re likely to feel a lot less cohesive due to this lack of clarity.
You might have wider business goals as well as more specific targets for each quarter, and it’s important that employees are made aware of each of these and understand how their work contributes towards achieving them. Consider how you can improve this awareness, such as holding company-wide meetings, integrating business goals into project briefings, or going right the way back to job descriptions and helping employees see how their specific role responsibilities align with goals.
This is important on a more granular level as well; if you want your teams to work cohesively then you need to make sure that everyone understands the deliverables for a project, along with the expectations, deadlines and individual responsibilities.
Lead with Your Values
A good company culture is based on values that dictate the direction of the business and how the work is carried out, and if you’re promoting cohesion then you need to be sure that your goals link back to your values by ensuring that these values are the driving force behind all aspects of your business.
Company values are a set of standards that dictate the way that a business is run, impacting everything from the clients you work with to the way employees interact in the workplace. They’re the backbone of your company culture, and if your values aren’t clear then you’re going to struggle to create workplace team cohesion because your employees won’t know how to act and what to prioritise.
It’s easy to create a generic set of company values, pop them in your employee handbook and then never think about them again. But if you want to use your culture to develop tech team cohesion, be sure to reference these values in every aspect of your business and ensure that employees know how to embody them as well.
Streamline Internal Communication
A key part of building team cohesion in the workplace is ensuring that lines of communication are open and easy to access. Better internal communication is linked to company culture as the way that employees interact will likely be informed by things like values and internal processes.
When employees can talk to each other openly and easily, collaboration is much easier and team members tend to feel closer to each other.
Effective communication partly comes from experience and the time needed to develop relationships between colleagues. But you can help this along by getting team members to share their preferred methods of communication and the best ways to deliver things like feedback, which can help to remove awkward interactions and streamline discussion within a team.
Tech team members need to know how to effectively communicate in person, but digital communication also needs to be streamlined to accommodate remote teams and make it easy to share progress and provide insight. Try and only use one platform to communicate and store documents, progress updates and meeting notes and make sure that this is easily accessible to everyone at all times.
Create Bonding Opportunities
Tech team cohesion can be achieved through improving internal processes, but something that will make a difference but is harder to achieve is how much your employees bond with one another. This isn’t something that you can force, but it’s something that you can facilitate by making team building a part of your company culture.
When asked about their opinions towards team building, 73% of employees said that they wished their companies would invest more in these kinds of activities and events. Whilst stereotypical ideas of team building get a bad reputation, organising trips, schemes, and sessions that strengthen employee relationships, allow them to collaborate outside of the work environment and help to build new skills is a fantastic way to improve your company culture and bring your teams closer together.
When these bonding opportunities are fun as well, you also help to boost overall employee morale.
Reframe Attitudes towards Mistakes
One impactful thing you can improve in your company culture is how employees handle and discuss making mistakes. Having a positive, growth-orientated approach to problems and setbacks is a great way to build cohesion in a team because it stops employees from feeling negative about mistakes, creates a culture of sharing, and helps develop an approach to problem-solving that focuses on learning from setbacks or issues.
Lead by example and think about how you can create a company culture where mistakes or problems aren’t viewed as bad things, and instead present an opportunity to learn from someone else or improve a future project or process. Promote developing a growth mindset and share resources with teams that will help everyone feel more comfortable sharing challenges and mistakes.
Recognise Progress as Well as Success
If you want to boost morale and develop a positive company culture, celebrating and rewarding hard work and success is a very effective approach. However, you want to ensure that all employees feel appreciated and recognised, not just those that are typical ‘high achievers’.
There is a wide range of different reward and recognition programs designed for companies of all sizes, as well as things like incentive schemes, promotions and bonuses. You can help all employees feel recognised by ensuring that you use these programs to celebrate all kinds of ‘wins’, including things like progress, perseverance and innovation.
45% of employees agreed that recognising contributions is the best way to retain people in a company. Not only will it create a workplace that employees will want to stay a part of, but you’ll also improve overall morale and develop a greater sense of ‘togetherness’.
As previously mentioned, it can be tricky to measure whether your efforts are helping to improve the cohesion of your tech teams without speaking directly to employees. If you’re making an effort to improve company culture and morale then be sure to keep talking to your staff about how they’re finding the changes and whether they feel positive improvements are being made.
A fantastic way to incentivise employees, facilitate bonding and boost morale is by offering corporate trips to exciting destinations that give your team an incredibly memorable experience together. Barcelona Inside and Out offers a range of corporate travel experiences perfect for tech teams, no matter the size of the group or the itinerary you had in mind. To start planning your trip, get in touch to find out more about our services.