What is cohesion and how to create a cohesive team?

Each team member can suggest their own strategy, share their experience or idea. Cohesion teamwork is an important factor for success in any sport. In team like that there is always a friendly atmosphere, understanding and trust.

How does the process of creating a team?

Any team doesn’t immediately become effective and cohesive. This requires a lot of effort from the coaches and the team members themselves. American psychologist Bruce Tuckman identified 4 stages of team formation:

First stage: forming

Athletes get to know each other and define common goals, roles and responsibilities within the team. At this stage, each team member answers the question: “Who are these people?”, “What do they expect from me?”, “Who will be the leader of the team?”, “What happens if we cooperate for a long time?”. You should remember that the coach must take part in the acquaintance of the team! It helps to overcome barriers in communication between players and create an atmosphere of support and cohesion.

The second stage: storming

At this stage there is a struggle for leadership. The team needs to come to a consensus and choose a person who can support the motivation of the group, clearly explain the goals and objectives and resolve conflicts within the team. During the “storming”, the following questions should be asked: “How will we cope with disagreements?”, “We have different points of view, how to come to a common solution?”, “Do I want to remain a member of this team?”

The third stage: norming

After solving all conflicts and choosing a leader, the team is ready to proceed to the installation of open communications, norms and positions. At this stage, such questions should be raised: “How can I support the members of my team?”, “What is the benefit of each individual team member?”, “What values ​​and norms does the team have?”

The fourth stage: Performing

Performing a trusting relationship with the team. We all know that if the level of trust in a team is high, then the communication between its members becomes simple, effective and instant! This is the first step towards cohesion. Once cohesion is achieved, the team moves from “norming” to “performing”, that is, effective cooperation.

таблица формирования сплоченной команды

What is cohesion?

Cohesion is a state of unity when team members support each other and go together towards one common goal.

Athletes cohesive team focus on the process, and not on the personality of the leader or someone else. There is always respect and support in the team. Together they develop plans and strategies, defining the principles of success for their group.

How to create a cohesion team?

This information will be useful to both coaches and team leaders who want to improve the cohesion of their team. A good start will be a qualitative assessment of perceived cohesion from the point of view of athletes. This can be done individually with each or through group conversations with your wards. Ask them a question: “How do you interact with teammates?”. The essence of the conversation is to openly listen to their thoughts, understand the feelings without too much condemnation.

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When you get a complete picture of the state of affairs in your team, you can choose and apply several strategies to increase cohesion. When reading the proposed techniques, we ask you to consider your sport, the characteristics of your teammates (age and gender) and your own philosophy, point of view.

1. Develop a team mission

Develop a strategy and goals for the future sports or playing season. Come up with a motto or phrase that can rally your team, raising its spirit. When a team works together on personal motivators, athletes are more likely to be loyal to their teammates and are often willing to take responsibility for the team.

2. Create a team identity

Athletes easier to develop team unity, if they have a sense of their own uniqueness. Each team wants to stand out among the others, even if these are internal rules or settings. Encourage the customs and rituals of your team. This may be unusual training or joint training.

3. Encourage communication between athletes.

Your team members don’t have to be best friends to treat each other with respect and friendliness. You need to learn to regulate the interaction of athletes on the court and be attentive to the roles of each of them. Your teammates should be open to each other, not be aggressive and try to improve their performance on their territory.

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4. Each has its own role.

A coach or leader of any team needs to be sure that all members of his team know their roles. Between them there should be no understatement. Hold regular meetings where team members can talk to each other, find out what they expect from each other, what mistakes should be taken into account and corrected.

5. Leave a review.

Don’t forget to give feedback to your team at the end of training or major competitions. It’s necessary to talk not only with the whole team, but also with each athlete individually. Tell them what they did well and what else they should work on. Remember, your criticism and advice should be constructive only!

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6. ask for feedback

You shouldn’t only give your feedback, but also ask them to speak. Find out what they think is good and bad. The team can show a lot of small problems. Athletes feel that their opinion matters to you and the rest of the people in the team.

7. Celebrate Team Success

When your athletes win competitions or exceed their results in training, don’t forget to praise them and thank for the work. So, you show that you appreciate them. After victories at major competitions, you can arrange a festive evening in a cafe with athletes and their families.

сплоченная команда празднует победу

Creating a cohesive team is a time consuming and endless process. Always be alert and analyze the relationships and activities of your team. Don’t forget to engage in self-development in the direction of sports psychology, in order to apply suitable strategies and techniques to optimize teamwork. Your personal interest and joint efforts will help improve the physical performance and spirit of your team.

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