5 characteristics of High Performing Teams

Over the years of working in different organizations, I’ve noticed quite a few characteristics common amongst high-performing teams and the opposite – non-performing. Not every single characteristic was present in every team, but the more you found, the bigger chances of success for that team. The main purpose of this post is to talk about 5 characteristics that I think make the biggest impact on performance. If your team has all of those – it might just be high-performing already.

High Performing Teams are impossible without creating the right culture.

Start with clarity & intention

High performance team performance depends upon the level of clarity and intention in the action plan.

  • What are we intending to achieve?
  • Who are we working with? 
  • What are the results we are aiming for? 

When these questions are answered, any performance problems can be identified and addressed promptly. There may be some aspect that is driving your performance but it’s not clear that you know it.


Trust is the lifeblood of performance and is one of the most important characteristics of a high performance team. When your team trusts you, success happens faster and at less cost. In today’s competitive environment, it’s essential to build and sustain trust in your team. Yet most companies focus only on performance metrics and lose sight of what truly motivates employees—art, knowledge, service, passion and commitment. The results you see are the result of this all-too-human motivation

Everyone must be accountable

One of the main reasons startups fail is because teams don’t connect. At the heart of many problems at startups, including product delivery, is a lack of accountability.

The high performance team concept was developed at Google to help us build a workplace where successful teams don’t just include the one or two people who really get things done, but also include the people who help others get things done. At its heart, the concept is simple: Everyone on a team should be held accountable for the performance of each member across the entire organization. Each performance metric–such as miles run or product delivered–should be earned by individuals rather than increments posted on individual performance accounts.

Ongoing feedback/learning

A healthy team is built on continuous feedback and active learning. It creates a culture in which everyone is valued for their contributions. Creating a truly high-performance team requires both leaders who are continuous learners and those who can provide ongoing feedback on their teammates. In effect, continuous learning helps both leaders and team members learn faster and recognize opportunities that would otherwise go unnoticed or unaddressed.

Every goal is a Team Goal

While each team member has their own responsibilities, everyone is collectively working towards one large goal and their individual work contributes to the project’s overall success. High-performing teams aren’t afraid to pitch in to help each other out to ensure that all goals are met. 

The list is just a holistic summary of the main attributes of a High-performing team. Get started with our HP report to turn your team into a high-performance team by assessing your team’s health, finding out gaps and acting on it. To learn more about how culture.easy can transform your organization, schedule a call today.

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