Thursday, June 03, 2010

"The company wants a team player and an independent worker"

It's June 2010, and with unemployment around 10%, there is plenty of internet advice on how to get a job. One that recently showed up is titled Why Do They Ask That in an Interview? and includes the text:

The company wants a team player and an independent worker

When you are asked whether you work better alone or in a team, what they really want to know is how you interact with others and how much direction you need when you're assigned to work by yourself.

If you use time alone well, are you able to keep your boss posted on your progress at reasonable intervals? Are you good at brainstorming in a group, the one who comes up with rapid-fire ideas? Or are you the person who is likely to mold them into a collaborative effort to find a solution for the challenge at hand? Either alone or in a team, you want to convey that you can interact well with co-workers at various levels of authority, but that you're a person who can be productive and come up with answers on your own as well.

Back at Exxon, at rating and ranking time, one of the significant questions among managers was who really came up with the idea? One of the complaints after rating and ranking would be I didn't get enough credit for my work on the program.

One recalls that for a long duration of time, Chester Carlson was about the only person in the world who believed xerography was a worthwhile concept. After years and years, he convinced some people at Haloid, and then there was a team.

The text -- a collaborative effort to find a solution -- evokes the memorable line from TechDirt: It can be especially silly in school, where what some people consider plagiarism is really no different than collaboration.

Previous IPBiz posts:

TechDirt: plagiarism as re-imagination and collaboration [including the text: In the details provided, it sounds like the "plagiarism" mostly consisted of jokes. Again, repeating and sharing jokes is a crucial part of culture. , which thus appeared about one year BEFORE the Columbia University incident.]

UPDATE. 21 March 2011.

from hiresuccess:

Team Player: As applied in this system, the "team player" is the opposite of someone who likes to work alone, or independently. This is not meant in the context of supporting the group or a "team", but rather one who works best when they can interact with others rather than working alone.

Works Independently: The extreme in this case is a person who does not need, nor like, other people "looking over their shoulder". They know how to supervise his or herself and don't want someone micro-managing everything they do. They work best if left alone, especially if they know they are very good at what they do.

from ezine:

Solo act?

You prefer to close your office door. You like to get clear instructions and then be left alone to accomplish the work. You have a fully equipped home office and you are just as productive on the weekend as you are while at work. You would work from home if your company allowed it. You are excellent at single minded tasks, you are self motivated and you prefer to set your own parameters for getting things done. Business trips are like a vacation to you. You frequently forget to charge your cell phone battery... sound like you? Some of us still remember the character "Les" from television's WKRP in Cincinnati. He wanted walls, so he laid down masking tape, and created an imaginary door which his colleagues had to pretend to open and walk through when they came to his desk... Les was probably a soloist.

from linkedin: Independent Leader OR Team Player - How to be both with grace and style

**UPDATE on 5 August 2011

Individual or team player: What's the best EE?

But I want to know whether you think engineers by nature are team players or individual contributors. To me, engineering is unique in that it requires teamwork and individual contribution at the same time. And the profession requires a high level of creativity, which tends to fall into the individual contribution category.


Blogger burg said...


Tks very much for post:

I like it and hope that you continue posting.

Let me show other source that may be good for community.

Source: Are you a team player

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6:36 AM  

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