The Power of Team Training: Going Beyond Individual Excellence

by | Apr 2, 2024

Darcy Luoma is one of America’s most highly credentialed coaches. She’s worked in 48 industries, with more than 500 organizations, and has impacted tens of thousands of leaders and employees.


Ahead of every new season, players engage in team practices, strategize together, and build camaraderie. Imagine if they didn’t.

Picture a sports team focusing only on individual skills. Even if the individual players were dedicated to personal excellence, it still wouldn’t be enough.

Because for a team to be successful, they understand that success on the field depends on how well they work together as a team, not just on their individual talents. Having a roster full of star players doesn’t guarantee success. 

We can learn from sports teams

The same holds true for teams in the workplace. Organizations often find themselves grappling with the question of how to turn a group of talented individuals into a high-performing team.

Google’s study of 180 teams shed light on this issue, revealing that team dynamics play a crucial role in determining a team’s success. It’s not just about having the best people; it’s about how those people interact, structure their work, and view their contributions.

Organizations that invest in team training and development are more likely to see success than those that focus solely on individual growth. 

Where can you start?

What sets high-performing teams apart is their recognition that training as a team is just as important as training as individuals. So, how can you start training as a team?

Next time you meet with your team, try this exercise:

  • Ask each team member to describe the team in three words.
  • Then, ask what three words they would like to use to describe the team.
  • Finally, discuss what the team needs to do to bridge the gap between the current state and the desired state.

There are no right or wrong answers. But activities like these can be a starting point for a discussion that can lead to valuable insights and improvements. 

The whole is greater than the sum of its parts

A star pitcher. An outstanding shortstop. A league MVP. Each of these players can contribute to the team. But only if they figure out how to work together. You can do the same with your star players by making sure they’re also learning how to work together. It doesn’t happen on its own. But once it does, that’s when you can knock it out of the park!

2 minute quiz