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Blog: The Joy of Teamwork

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“All I really need to know I learned in kindergarten,” says Robert Fulghum, author of the book by the same title. I find this to certainly be true in my life but it is also good to know that the learning continues.

I live in Charlottesville, VA and locally we have a summer camp for kids called “Spectrum”. The camp is sponsored by the Tandem Friends School and they have a hoot (kids and leaders)! Irish dancing, story telling, African drumming, acting, film making, singing, juggling, baking, fencing, organic food production, box city, and more! The tough part for the kids is choosing what to do ... and the best part for parents (and grandparents) is the show they put on their last day. It is hard to believe that kids can team together in such a short time and put on such fantastic performances! You feel their joy radiating as they perform ... and what a delight for those of us who get to watch.

I personally discovered a moral to being able to be a part of these activities. The campers spent two weeks together being highly productive in a wide variety of activities. They loved it and they want to do it again. Why? The answer is the enjoyment and fulfillment of working with their teams as well as the meaningful leadership. The leaders are very good at what they do and they coach the campers (teams) how to have fun learning new things. It was also enlightening to watch the leaders of each session light up with pride as their teams of campers performed ... often, it seemed the results exceeded their own expectations.

Now think of your last two weeks at work. What is so different? Did you participate in a wide variety of activities, work with all kinds of people, learn/teach/coach with joy and enthusiasm, work as a team, produce meaningful results? If you did, I’ll bet you’re enjoying your work. If not, maybe it’s time to be a kid again and have some fun (and call it work)!

-By Ken Karr


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