What are Team Principles?
Team Principles is a simple template for line managers to use as the basis of a discussion with their teams about how they will work now and in the future.
It’s also designed to be a really practical document to about good practice/housekeeping in the new office and welfare things like keeping in touch, supporting each other etc.
Good teams start with people who trust each other to work towards a common purpose. Building on the learnings of the TW3 Development Programme, Team Principles are the foundation of an open and honest team culture.
How we work is changing. Work is something that we do, rather than somewhere we go. Team Principles is a tool to have an open discussion with your team about how you can all perform at your best.
Why do we need Team Principles?
Positivity, clarity, and a shared purpose are stronger motivators for people than deadlines and to-do lists.
Whether you are moving to Colindale or not (depending on your service), the modern workforce is changing to be more agile and have greater choice in how they deliver. Technology and modern working policies empowers staff with more choice of how, when and where they work. Measuring by output rather than presenteeism is a shift in how we work.
Awareness of and commitment to shared values are more important to a team than its collective skills, talents, and experience. Outputs that you can be proud of and which reflects who you are is made more transparent with Team Principles.
I’m a line manager, how do I go about creating our Team Principles?
Follow the template and download the guide and personas to help your team visualise their future working ways. To help to get the conversation started, please use:
- Team Principles template (blank Word template to populate)
- Guide to creating your Team Principles (facilitators notes on what to encourage and what to avoid in creating your principles)
- Personas: what working at Barnet could look like in 2020, to help you visualise your future workplace
- Team Principles infographic (Pictured below: The infographic was created at the TW3 Away Day, and captures the ideas shared by the attendees – can be used to stimulate discussion).
Can I see an example?
Yes! The Council Management Team (CMT) shared their principles at their Management Conference.
Here’s another example from Adults and Communities, Business Intelligence Team.
Can I change the template to suit my service?
Absolutely, this document serves as a common understanding within your team, and every team is different.
Team structure (contracts, rules, processes) is only as effective as it is flexible. Structure is itself a tool and should be allowed to evolve as the work changes. Empower your team to try different ways of working and technology and adjust as you go. We recommend that you revisit your Team Principles at least every 3 months to see if it needs any adjustments.
Simply, it’s about empowering your staff and setting clear expectations. It sets out a practical level how your team will work, communicate and support each other. Team Principles, like regular 1-to-1s and SMART objectives, is another way to ensure your team is supported to deliver for our communities in Barnet.