How you can unlock enhanced teamwork in your organisation

September is National Self-Improvement month, encouraging us to set goals for making positive changes to our lives. But we think these changes don’t have to be confined to the realm of the personal – we can also make changes to our working lives, to improve our happiness and productivity in the workplace.

We spend a lot of our lives at work – over 90,000 hours of them – so it makes sense that we try to make that time as positive and productive as possible. A recent study by the University of Warwick found that when we’re happy at work, we’re not only more motivated and committed – we’re also 12% more productive.

The relationships we form with our colleagues are a key part of our working lives. They influence workplace cultures and are in part conducive to our personal happiness and productivity at work. As the Greek philosopher Aristotle said, ‘Man is by nature a social animal’, and a study published in the Journal of Consumer Research found that our experiences have more impact when we share them with others. Therefore, a yearning for companionship is a key aspect of our psychological makeup.

So how can we ensure that we’re getting the most out of and maintaining positive relationships with our work colleagues? It’s not necessarily about indulging in conversation or activity; it’s also about creating a shared understanding to bolster and enhance workplace teamwork and productivity.

Using PRINT® enables this shared understanding to be forged through the insight it gives into the motivations behind our behaviour. PRINT® uncovers our ‘Unconscious Motivators®’, the invisible drivers which influence our actions and responses to particular situations and events. In doing so, it helps us predict the behaviours we’ll exhibit when we are operating in Best Self and our behaviours when we are not being Best Self – that is, operating in Shadow.

Whether we are in Best Self or Shadow is determined by how well our Unconscious Motivators® are being met. So, imagine that Jill (a PRINT® 9), who seeks out harmony and likes to avoid conflict, is working closely with Colin. Colin is a PRINT® 1, and is comfortable to openly challenge others to ensure that things are done properly.

If Jill views his challenges as sparking conflict, Colin might well be triggering her off right, left and centre – pushing her into her less productive Shadow behaviours. However, if Colin was aware of Jill’s PRINT® profile, he’d have the knowledge to be more mindful of the impact of his behaviours when interacting with her.

When colleagues share and discuss their personal PRINT® profiles, they gain a mutual understanding of their unique Unconscious Motivators® and how these affect the ways in which they work with, respond to and interact with each other. When employees are aware of how their colleagues’ behaviours or personal Triggers are likely to influence their own, they can formulate strategies together to adapt their actions and behaviour to suit their Best Selves and avoid Triggering each other into Shadow.

We all respond in different ways to different situations, and something that gets on your goat might not even register with someone else. But being aware of what’s important to others, and how they might react to specific things, can help to increase teamwork and productivity.

Getting to know what makes your closest work colleagues tick can positively change your experience at work. Why not consider this as one of your goals for National Self Improvement Month?


For more information on how PRINT® could benefit yourself or your organisation, email, visit our website and social media (Facebook: @discoveryourprint, Twitter: @Discover_Print, LinkedIn: Print Profile Ltd) or sign up to our mailing list. If you’d like to bring PRINT’s benefits to organisations and businesses, we offer Accreditation courses enabling in-house coaches and learning & development professionals to become certified PRINT® coaches.