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Create a Winning Team

By Jessica Brown

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When you work with Imagebox, you usually end up working with the whole team. We are a small group that does some big work. Our team consists of writers, designers, coders, and project managers. In order to get things accomplished, it’s important that we work as a team – but we need to keep in mind that clients are an equal part of the team, too.

When everything runs smoothly, it’s a little bit like this:

[YT video=”PxtyAC59AeE”/]

However, when individual members of a team and their clients don’t work cohesively in a group, it can slow down or derail a project completely. Here are some things that we suggest you keep in mind to keep everyone on the same page:

Delegate & share the stage.

At any company, every team member deserves their 15 minutes of fame. This includes team leaders, clients, and even the person lowest on the career ladder. We work to give everyone a say and to delegate work where it makes the most sense. Sometimes junior level employees will give presentations on work that they have done, while other times our management will sit down to do some photo editing. In our office, there is no job too big or too small for one person!

Think about the platform for your meetings.

One of the worst situations you can encounter when it comes to meetings is realizing that you chose to meet in the wrong way. Whether it was long distance travel for a short meeting or a phone call that was less productive than an in-person meeting may have been, wasted time is costly for everyone. To avoid this, create a meeting agenda ahead of time. If you need to discuss things like visuals and layout, you may want to meet about it in person. But things like content edits may be something that can be done over the phone or through email.

Take criticism constructively.

We are creating websites that need to get business for our clients. And no one knows their industry better than them. That’s why we understand when they have specific needs or wants when it comes to their site’s content, design, and functionality. Your main goal should be to have an end product that the client is happy with. That will sometimes mean that team members will bump heads with other team members, or that team members will bump heads with clients. Always remember that you are all working toward the same goal!

Do your research.

Every successful team can say that a key to their success is that they know their stuff. Just as clients do their research when looking for a company to build their website or create an internet marking plan, it is up to the company to then do their research and get to know their client. We do all of our kick-off meetings in person so that we can get a feel for the client, including their goals, style, and motivation behind starting their own business. Not only are these meetings useful, but they are fun! Deeper research such as exploring old websites, print materials, and social media accounts can only help us do our job better, too.

Think outside of the box.

Some of the world’s greatest ideas have come from the most unlikely places. So it’s important that when you do brainstorming, you keep an open mind at how you want to share and remember ideas. At Imagebox, we are big on white boards. We get out our dry erase markers at every meeting to write down ideas, map out designs, and help us organize our thoughts. When collaborating with clients we aren’t speaking with face-to-face, we either upload files to discuss in Basecamp or we work in a shared Google document to make edits. Offsite meetings are sometimes a great way to get out of your usual environment and encourage more creative ideas. While most of your work might happen at your desk, who KNOWS where your best ideas will happen.