This is the third of a five part series.

West Michigan Works! now offers workshops designed to help you bring important employability skills to your job search or current workplace—skills that West Michigan employers have identified as the ones they look for in an ideal candidate or employee.

WorkReady workshops measure how well you understand and use nine important employability skills. Over the next few weeks, we will share all nine essential skills.


Teamwork is defined as a group of people working together towards a common goal. Whether you’re a member of a small, formal team or one of hundreds of employees at a company, your performance and attitude affect the goal of the team and the organization.

Communication is one of the most important elements of teamwork. In a positive team environment, information, ideas and opinions about processes and products are shared and received. And they are shared and received with respect – another essential element of teamwork.

For any team to succeed, the individuals who are part of it must have and show respect for each other. When you show respect for others, you are telling them you value them and what they do. In addition to respecting others’ ideas and opinions, respect in the workplace means not taking credit for someone else’s work, keeping common areas clean and not coming to work sick.


Innovation at work is the ability to generate new ideas, processes, or products of value to the team or organization. Having an “innovation mindset” allows you to see opportunities for improvement.

Innovative ideas don’t have to be huge, like inventing a new product. An innovation can be as simple as suggesting “taco Tuesdays” so that employees get to know each other. One of the keys to coming up with new and interesting ideas is to think about a problem from another angle or perspective.

Part of innovation involves thinking through how ideas may affect other people and processes in the company.  Before you communicate your idea, you need to know “who,” “what,” “where,” “how,” and “when.”

Are you WorkReady? Click here to find a workshop near you.