4 Ways for Control Freaks to Become Better Team Players

By Chelsea Babin

Are you a control freak? Or, to put it more politely, are you someone who prefers to be in control at all times? If so you probably have a more challenging time working with others than you do working by yourself. Even if you just prefer to be in control in general, you may struggle to be the best team player you can be. But that can change! Try these 4 things to relinquish control more easily and work well as part of a team:

1. Set Clear Roles Within the Team: The first thing a control freak should do when trying to be a better team player is make sure tasks are clearly assigned within the team. That will prevent you from trying to take over someone else’s domain without their request but it will also give you a list of things that you’re directly responsible for so you can have more control over those aspects without feeling like you’re stepping on anyone’s toes.

2. Ask Others to Call You Out: Let’s face it, if you know you prefer to be in control you should let others know! That way, if you do end up steamrolling them or stepping on their toes they know they can call you out for it and help you identify those moments so you can avoid doing the same thing in the future. Owning up to your personality traits and explaining them to others will help you collaborate better in any team environment.

3. Play to Your Strengths, Let Others Play to Theirs: Everyone knows their own strengths and, more importantly, everyone should know their own weaknesses. The best thing about working in a team is that each member can work to their strengths and, in areas where they’re weak, they can let someone else take the ball and run with it. However, if you’re a control freak you might not realize what your weaknesses are. Take some time to evaluate your strengths and weaknesses and then make sure when you’re working in a team you focus on playing to your strengths and you let others play to their strengths, which will help make up for your weaknesses.

4. Check In Regularly: If you don’t know how everyone’s progressed in their designated responsibilities it may be nerve-wracking for you. To avoid this, suggest to your team that you all have regular check ins with each other. Whether these take the form of meetings or short progress reports, you’ll feel less like you need to be in complete control if you know how everything is progressing. And, if someone is falling behind, you can go the extra mile and offer to help.

If you prefer to have control some people might call you a control freak, others would call you a natural born leader. Whatever you call yourself is up to you but, if you want to learn how to reign in your need for control so you can work better in a team environment try these 4 things!