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How to Integrate Into a Project Team

written by: Jean Scheid • edited by: Linda Richter • updated: 6/2/2011

When one thinks how to integrate into a project team, this statement can mean a few different things. There are integrated project teams as well as members who are looking for the right fit inside a certain team. Finally, individuals seek the help of HR departments to be placed on the right team.

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    The Various Types of Project Team Integration

    Talk With HR Manager Morgue File Every project needs resources and, often, the largest of those resources are the teams and the individuals that make up those teams. Before we explore how to integrate into a project team, let’s look at the various forms of project team integration:

    • HR Integration – Often the responsibility of placing an individual within a certain team falls to the human resources department. HR managers look at individual skill sets that match a team’s skillset or talents that will benefit a team working on a specific project.
    • Integrated Project Teams – Here, we find a combination of in-house teams and external resources brought together through project managers, stakeholders, and clients. External resources can be vendors, suppliers, or even equipment providers.
    • Individual Integration – An individual within an organization may seek a team if he finds a specific team project is a venue where he has something to offer. These people usually find ways to meet with leaders or team facilitators who aid them in joining the team.

    Now that we’ve described the types of resource integration, how do you get into a project team of choice--must you be assigned, or do you need to wait to be chosen?

    Image Credit (Morgue File)

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    Show Off Your Resources

    Network In Morgue File Learning how to integrate into a project team depends upon the situation each individual faces or circumstances based on desires or needs. Let’s look at how to get your foot in the door using the three team integration scenarios above:

    1. Integrating With HR Help – For those who have much to offer in all areas of different project management methodologies, be sure to list all your skill sets, experience, successes, and education, and deliver your “in-house" resume to the HR manager. Whether you’re new or old to an organization, take note of the types of projects and methodologies utilized. Next, make an appointment with the HR manager to discuss your delivered written skills. Ask for help in finding the right team fit for proper integration. Be prepared to accept trial periods based on certain project manager requirements and always accept the challenge of becoming a new team member, no matter what the project.
    2. Get on an Integrated Project Team – For this type of project team integration, if you are in-house you can utilize the process in step one or meet with project leaders directly. If you are an outside resource familiar with an organization’s project needs, you need to network your way in. Consider a proposal meeting that shows what you have to offer or get involved in the vendor selection or bid process.
    3. Going It Alone – Some people find themselves on teams where they feel they have nothing to offer. On the other side of that coin, you may be a newbie that wants to break into a team. Beyond speaking with the HR manager, make every attempt to connect with project managers and ask questions about the team project selection process as well as types of projects available. Offer your help by stating exactly what you can do for the team.

    The steps of learning how to integrate into a project team can mean different rocks to climb depending on your individual situation, if you want to make a change, or if you are an outsider looking to resource your way in.

    An authoritative personality that shouts your skill level and project management knowledge is your best bet for gaining entrance into a team. If you’re an outside resource, do your homework before the proposal process begins.

    Image Credit (Morgue File)