Teamwork for the Win
By Per Loof, July 5, 2018
Every four years, we all come together to witness an amazing celebration of sports…the World Cup. This event brings together many different countries, cultures and traditions. KEMET's internationally diverse workforce is made up of 16,000 employees hailing from 15 countries of the 32 teams participating in this year's World Cup. If you're wondering whether I have a favorite team to win…I am Swedish after all! Heja Sverige! And Sweden has advanced to the final eight teams after defeating Switzerland. Pretty cool and most unexpected, if I may add my personal view.
During the past few weeks, I have watched more matches than is probably healthy. I was in Japan last week and the games started at 11 p.m. By the time I had consumed a glass of mandatory bubbly after Sweden's win and celebrating via FaceTime across multiple time zones, it was well past 2 a.m.!
While watching the World Cup, I am reminded that this event teaches us how great teamwork skills and working together towards a common goal can help achieve success. Like all team sports, success requires the mental and physical collaboration of all individuals involved. Often at work, we fall into mental silos when we work on projects. While this might be a comfortable solution to some, there is no "I" in the word "team." Successful teams rely on each member's skill set, knowledge and experience to bolster the unit's strength. In soccer or football, the full team is involved at all times — working at KEMET is no different. We are a community of people, with diverse backgrounds, all connected to one another with a shared goal and a commitment to delivering the best products and services to the thousands of customers we serve globally.
Another observation from this World Cup is that the most successful teams have been the most diverse. Teams that have a variety of cultures, skills and perspectives seem to have a competitive advantage. Teams on the field and in business need players that can change positions, collaborate, innovate and adjust to a variety of situations, even the unexpected. Many of our best customer solutions and technological innovations at KEMET are a result of our employees' diverse backgrounds. I believe that this synergy of our differences working together will continue to keep KEMET at the forefront of innovation. Sports and business draw very similar parallels. How do you keep your team focused on the goal? What are the ingredients for a successful team? Please let me know your thoughts. In the meantime, enjoy the competition and may the best team win!