Our Associate Janet Wildman talks about what makes an effective team, especially within the context of challenges of modern healthcare environments:

Great teams don’t just happen. 

Teams that fit together like puzzle pieces are the result of hard work and collaborative and thoughtful leadership.

What does it take to build an effective team and to embrace a different type of leadership in teams?

We’ll be looking at this on Friday November 3 as part of our next Edge Talk. We’ve invited Claire Haigh from Collaborate Out Loud, as well as individuals working across a range of disciplines and organisational boundaries to join us to discuss the challenges and opportunities of working in complex teams.

During the talk, we will be exploring the evidence on what makes an effective team, and what leading and managing means in this context. We would like to develop new creative and innovative concepts, tools and methods to enable teams to achieve their aims – and to spread this learning more widely in health and care.

What do you think makes a fab team? Have a look at the ideas on this page – you can vote on ideas that are already there, or add your own.


You might have seen Horizons’ sketchnote about 10 Things Fab Teams Do.

The sketchnote is a result of crowdsourced ideas and contributions Each of the 10 segments represents the key ingredients of an effective team. We know that this can be applied to different teams working in complex environment.

Effective teams in complex environments

There is no surprise that health care is becoming increasingly complex in this ‘post-digital’ age. The complex and intensive interactions necessary to sustain health in modern health care delivery systems require a different approach to supporting and developing teams. Much of the emergent thinking about complexity and systems and organisations alter the understanding of the nature and function of teamwork and the configuration of a team effort.

Transdisciplinary, multifocal and multilateral teams working in complex systems require a different approach to problem-solving than traditional industrial age models and problem-solving methodologies allowed. Historical linear approaches reflected a simple cause and effect model. The environment we exist in is less predictable, and the ecosystems and social systems do not behave in predicted ways. Leaders and leadership in this context take on a new form, particularly when as we move from single leader approaches to team-based approaches that are collaborative, fluid, interactive and dynamic.

Contribute to the conversation

Join Claire, from Collaborate Out Loud and myself on #EdgeTalks this Friday, 3rd November, at 9.30am when we will also be joined with a great line up of people sharing their stories of what makes a fab team in their organisations. The webinar is free, and all are welcome.

For more information or to chat in more detail about what makes a fab team, please contact  Janet.wildman@nhs.net or clairehaigh@gmail.com.

What are Edge Talks?

EdgeTalks is a series of monthly webinars that aim to share the latest innovative, social era change methods with anyone with an interest in leading and supporting change in health and care. We want to ensure that transformation and large-scale change are informed by the latest thinking and practices. We seek to impact individuals from a broad spectrum of interests in the change agenda.