Rev up teamwork skills on your CV for maximum effect

For football fanatics, it's Barcelona FC's tiki-taka tactics; for rugby realists, it's the scrum; for cricketing cranks, it's the fielding team. What do all of these have in common?

Outstanding teamwork. Pulling together as a team to achieve set targets.

Whether that's scoring goals, tries, or runs, these aims can only be met if all the players on the pitch work together cohesively as a team. It's essential. If they're just in it for themselves, nothing is going to work, and any tactics that have been laid out will be for nothing.

We all know there's no “I” in “team”. This well-known phrase is trying to encourage teamwork by reducing each member's self-importance, reminding team members that just thinking about yourself isn't constructive where teamwork is involved.

We're sociable creatures. We enjoy interacting with others. Most jobs or careers depend on others for support, guidance, motivation, and working together as a team.

What is teamwork?

The teamwork definition is “the cooperative work done by a team,” and “the ability to work efficiently as a team,” according to the Collins English Dictionary. What it says on the tin, really.

Teamwork is an essential part of most work environments and requires four core abilities:

  1. The ability to communicate effectively with other team members

  2. The insight to recognise and understand the viewpoints of others

  3. A realisation and appreciation of the level of contribution that you're expected to make

  4. The capacity to build and sustain robust relationships with colleagues

What is the value of teamwork?

Why is teamwork important? Unless you're a Lorry Driver or a Cleaner working night shifts, the chances are you'll be part of a team during some part of your job. Most companies have a variety of teams across different divisions and departments. Thriving within a team by adopting an accountable and empathetic manner will help you to achieve your own professional goals, as well as those of the organisation you work for. It also adds value to your CV - and therefore your chances of getting to the next level of your career.

Effective teamwork contributes to the team's success, morale, and retention of staff, so the more team savvy you are, the better. It can help with building rapport with team members and stakeholders, which leads to deeper work connections, new networking opportunities, and even openings within your career. Teamwork also contributes towards having a harmonious environment in the office, so teams are able to complete goals and projects more efficiently and effectively.

What are the 7 C's of teamwork?


Primarily the role of the team leader, good coaching can build cohesion and efficiency by working with team members to build on and cement their skills. It encourages each team member to work hard, while establishing trust between them. 

An example of this teamwork skill on your CV:

Maximised the potential and contribution of nine members of teaching staff by spearheading CPD with coaching / mentoring techniques and discussions relating to theories, practice, and research information.


Cognition is mastering your own role within the team structure, in order to be competent at completing your own tasks for the sake of the team. It shows you're an expert of your own work, as well as being aware of team norms, team resources, and team missions.

An example of this teamwork on your CV:

Showcased perception, intuition, and reasoning in order to renew a contract, resulting in beneficial working practices for the entire team.


Commitment incorporates accountability and trust. Without these, teams are at sea. Being committed to end goals strengthens, motivates, and prepares teams when challenges are to be faced. When you have a committed team, you're more likely to deliver the best results.

An example of this teamwork skill on your CV:

Committed to delivering team targets by ensuring deadlines, budgets, and objectives are continually achieved.


It's all about saying the right thing at the right time! Good communication is rarely mentioned; it's when it's appalling that you really notice! Including both verbal and nonverbal communication, it's an essential part of your armoury if you want to be a great team player.

An example of this teamwork skill on your CV:

Cultivated productive partnerships with clients, the cast, and technical crew, using effective communication to build a strong rapport and nurture profitable associations.


Resolving team tension is vital for everyone to be able to move forward. This is no time to bury your head in the sand. Addressing any conflict quickly and head-on is the best course of action to take to nip it in the bud, so the team can continue on their way, working effectively together.

An example of this teamwork skill on your CV:

Swiftly resolved a staff holiday issue through methodical research and negotiation.


Similar to collaboration, this is all about team members monitoring each other to do the best they can, through the sharing of ideas, best practice, and support. This type of behaviour also increases employee satisfaction, encourages innovation, and improves team efficiency. Good teams pull together so that if an error occurs, the members can work collectively to overcome it without hesitation.  

An example of this teamwork skill on your CV:

Adopted an inclusive, transparent, and collaborative leadership approach that yielded repeated success in building high performing engineering teams which scaled readily and delivered quality products of value.

Continuous Improvement

Continually improving as a team and a business is the key to progressing. Teams who are oriented towards continuous improvement can face up to new challenges with confidence and resilience. If colleagues and the team are dedicated to improving individual performances, this can lead to evolved team processes and improved interpersonal dynamics.

An example of this teamwork skill on your CV:

Achieved a stable culture of learning, continuous improvement, and collaboration by using well-structured Agile processes to recover from extensive restructuring and a funding collapse.

How do you develop teamwork skills?

You might reckon you're the top of the class when it comes to teamwork skills, but there's always room for improvement. Follow the tips below to brush up on your teamwork skills.

Be a team player

For a team to be successful, it follows that all team members need to be successful. So praise where praise is due and celebrate team wins, no matter how insignificant. If issues threaten to split the team apart, overcome them together by using a measured and professional approach.

Build on trust

If your team members know that they can trust you, and vice versa, mutual respect will grow and flourish.

Request constructive feedback

This can help to identify your strengths and weaknesses. Once you're aware of your shortcomings, you can overcome them by developing a plan that'll improve them.

Swiftly resolve conflict

Resolving conflict quickly and effectively will preserve team spirit and motivation, as deep disagreements can damage the team's morale and productivity.

Learn from those who possess heightened teamwork skills

It's worthwhile checking out other teams within the organisation and honing in on those colleagues who clearly get what being in a team involves. When you view examples of excellent teamwork in others, take a note and apply those methods to yourself and within the team of which you're a part.

Ensure the physical space is conducive to cooperating in a team environment

The physical environment in which people work is so important, but often overlooked. Make sure it encourages collaboration and meets the needs of the team, with carefully selected spaces that can be used for quiet reflection as well as team meetings and an area big enough to accommodate everyone.

Clarify roles and responsibilities

If each team member knows exactly what they're meant to be doing on a daily basis, calm will ensue! It's when responsibilities are muddled, unclear, or not properly defined that chaos can creep in. Having clearly defined roles will help members of the team to stay focused and motivated.

Define team goals

It's the same for goals, whether those are weekly, monthly, or yearly, with each member playing their part. Clear definition of goals enables everyone to plan and see how their part in the whole makes a difference.

Hold impactful meetings

Meetings where progress, challenges, and future tasks are discussed need to have a focus, with all attendees staying on track and not veering off course with irrelevant detail. Meetings need a specific agenda that sticks to the issues that are the most important.

Showcasing good examples of teamwork skills on your CV

It's always best to show, not just tell, on a CV. This means avoiding the cliché of saying, “excellent team player” in your Professional Profile or within your Career Summary, without any hard evidence to back it up.

What you need are good teamwork examples littered throughout your CV, to showcase that you excel when part of a team and that you pull your weight at all times.

It's time to boast about teamwork skills on your CV, so use the below examples as a guideline as to how you can include teamwork skills in the most impactful manner.

  • Developed and maintained strong working partnerships with other healthcare staff and social services, in order to deliver outstanding patient care

  • Undertook ad hoc administrative duties for other team members when required

  • Pivotal part of a pitching team that secured a lucrative contract with a high profile company

  • Valued member of the sales team which achieved area growth of 27% and an increase in revenue of £18,000

  • Performed admirably alongside other trades during a refurbishment project, completing works two months ahead of schedule and without any major incidents

  • Successfully coordinated disparate team members from different departments to deliver an integrated French course which extended pupil progression

  • Kept channels of communication open and transparent during team meetings to clarify goals

  • Demonstrated an online training system to colleagues, resulting in improved accuracy and speed

  • Played a vital role, as part of a dedicated team, in delivering a high priority contract for a premium client within a short timeframe

  • Contributed directly to the team and company achieving preferred supplier status for key national accounts

  • Motivated and supported a dedicated team of 2nd and 3rd line Technicians to correctly diagnose faults across a voice network with over 2,000 users

  • Instrumental in improving team efficiency by contributing new solutions which allowed for rapid progression

  • Identified and rectified operational problems within the team and workstream, which saved time and reduced the amount of queries from colleagues 

How to answer teamwork skills questions during an interview

Teamwork skill questions come in a variety of different guises in an interview, so no matter what type of role you're going for, there's bound to be at least one teamwork skills question you'll be asked - unless you're going for a position as a hermit, of course!

Below are some of the more classic teamwork skills questions you're likely to encounter, with example answers that you can tailor to your own situation.

Q: What's your idea of a successful team?

This question will reveal your own perception of what an ideal team is, while giving the interviewer an insight into what sort of team player you are.

A: What makes a successful team is the people within it, and how they interact with each other on a daily basis. The top asset is effective communication, as well as having an understanding that others might look at things differently from yourself and accommodating that. Trusting your co-workers is also vital, so you know they've got your back as you've got theirs. If team members ultimately respect and trust each other, they'll work well together towards common objectives.

Q: Can you offer up an example of when you successfully coached a team member?

This isn't a question just for those at managerial level. It's one that can be asked at all levels of responsibility, as the wherewithal to help others to develop their skills further is a valuable attribute. Try to incorporate teamwork skills into your answer.

A: I was honoured to be asked to train up a new member of staff at my previous job. It was a customer service role and, while the new recruit had a lot of customer experience, she clearly struggled with the admin side of the job. I deployed excellent communication skills along with a personable approach and openness, in order to show her the ropes. She appreciated my input and patience, as we worked together through the issues that she was having in a coordinated way. 

Q: In what ways are you a team player?

This is an absolute classic interview question and is bound to come up in some form during an interview. The interviewer will be looking for evidence in your answer that displays team player qualities. You could cite past experience, but it might be better to approach it from the angle of the job you're applying for. How would they want you to be a team player? So keep that in mind when answering.

A: I love working with others, because of the team spirit and camaraderie, which always makes colleagues work better together. I empathise with others and can help the team to see the bigger picture, instead of getting bogged down in detail that's irrelevant. I've helped to identify and prevent issues becoming problems on many occasions within a team environment, and find that well-placed humour can oil the wheels even more!

Teamwork makes the dream work!

Keen to blow your own trumpet about how great you are at gelling with any team, but not sure how to go about incorporating teamwork skills on your CV? Check out TopCV's free review for professional advice and that vital first step to getting your CV in tip-top shape to enter the job market.

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