Teamwork Skills List and Examples

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Employers expect employees to be team players. Teamwork is required for almost every industry, ranging from business services to information technology to food services.

This is true even if it seems like your job is best suited for an independent worker. You may perform the bulk of your job duties alone, but you’ll still have to be able to think of your work in the context of the company’s broader goals, and communicate your accomplishments to other people at the organization.

Regardless of your role, you need to be able to work well with others – and also convey that fact to hiring managers, recruiters, and prospective employers. Scan any job listing, and you’ll see that even ads that seek “self-starters” also inevitably drop the phrase “team player.”

Here's a list of teamwork skills that employers are looking for in resumes, cover letters, job applications, and interviews. Emphasize the ones that are mentioned in the job description, but feel free to round out your application by mentioning others that apply.

© The Balance, 2018

How to Use Skills Lists

You can use these skills lists throughout your job search process. First and foremost, it’s a smart strategy to use as many of these skills words as you can in the text of your resume – both in your initial qualifications summary and in your descriptions of your work history. Many employers use automated applicant tracking systems to rank the resumes they receive; these systems are programmed to search for and prioritize particular “keywords” (typically, the skills or “qualifications” listed in an employer’s job listing).

The second place to incorporate these teamwork skills is in your cover letter. In the body of your letter, try to mention one or two of these terms, providing a specific example of a time when you demonstrated these skills at work.

Finally, you can use these skill words in your interview. Make sure you have at least one example of a time you demonstrated each of the top five skills listed here. Choose stories that emphasize your skills and show how they have helped you to solve the organization’s problems. Be as specific as possible.

To give your examples maximum impact, try to include quantifiable statistics – numbers, percentages, or dollar figures – to show the tangible results of your efforts.

Of course, each job will require different skills and experiences, so make sure you read the job description carefully, and focus on the skills listed by the employer. Also review our other lists of skills listed by job and type of skill.

Top 5 Teamwork Skills

  1. Communication: Being a good team member means being able to clearly communicate your ideas with the group. You must be able to convey information via phone, email, and in person. You want to make sure your tone is always professional but friendly. Both verbal and nonverbal communication are important when working with a group in person.
    Related Resume Keyword Skills: Advising, Collaboration, Contributing, Coordination, Creativity, Creative Thinking, Give Feedback, Goal Setting, Guidance, Influencing, Language, Management, Persuading, Research, Team Management, Teaching, Verbal Communication, Visual Communication, Written Communication.
  1. Conflict Management: An important teamwork skill is being able to mediate problems between team members. You need to be able to negotiate with your team members to settle disputes and make sure everyone is happy with the team’s choices.
    Related Resume Keyword Skills: Conflict Management, Cooperation, Defining Problems, Flexibility, Logic, Logical Argument, Logical Thinking, Mediation, Negotiating, Problem Solving, Team Building, Team Building Activities.
  2. Listening: Another important part of communication is listening well. You must be able to listen to the ideas and concerns of your peers in order to be an effective team member. By asking questions for clarification, demonstrating concern, and using nonverbal cues, you can show your team members that you care and understand them.
    Related Resume Keyword Skills: Active Listening, Critical Thinking, Group Decision Making, Hearing Concerns, Interpreting, Listening, Nonverbal Communication, Questioning, Receive Feedback.
  1. Reliability: You want to be a reliable team member so that your coworkers can trust you. Make sure you stick to deadlines and complete any tasks you are assigned. This will help you gain your colleagues’ trust.
    Related Resume Keyword Skills: Commitment, Community Building, Confidence, Confidence Building, Dependability, Helpfulness, Helping, Honesty, Leadership, Multitasking, Participation, Perform Tasks, Responsibility, Team Oriented, Task Management, Trust.
  2. Respectfulness: People will be more open to communicating with you if you convey respect for them and their ideas. Simple actions like using a person's name, making eye contact, and actively listening when a person speaks will make the person feel appreciated.
    Related Resume Keyword Skills: Acknowledging Others, Encouragement, Expanding Ideas, Idea Exchange, Interpersonal, Motivation, Opinion Exchange, Oral Communication, Patience, Positive Attitude, Relationship Building, Sharing Credit, Support, Team Player, Tact, Understanding Feelings.

    More Skills for Workplace Success

    Review a list of the best skills to include on your resume, incorporate them into your job search materials and LinkedIn profile, and mention them during job interviews to show employers how you're well-qualified for the job.