Teams are special because collectively, they can produce work that no team member could create alone. Teams represent a range of skills, expertise, passions, and perspective.
When working on a project with a team, it is natural to get caught up in the details without ever surfacing relevant background about ourselves and our teammates. Yes, our job is to create an impact for the client or customer; we must focus on them and learn as much as possible. That said, imagine the value we could make by uncovering the connections that our teammates have with the work and we have with each other.
How helpful would it be to know that your teammate spent 15 years as a personal trainer when working with a fitness client; or that the developer on the project is studying animation?
Here are some questions to consider when starting work with a new team. Not only can these questions help uncover important context about the team, but through those discoveries, they can also create a deeper understanding of the work itself and make for more productive collaboration.