Monthly Archives

September 2018

By | Entrepreneurship

5 Team Building Tips

On Thursday, September 27, the Ain Center hosted the first Foundry Forum, a new workshop series designed to train entrepreneurs. This workshop – Opposites Attract: Turning a Group of Strangers Into a Team – covered a number of techniques and tricks for finding a group of people you want to work with and how to keep those relationships strong. We boiled down the workshop into a few key points.

Read all five tips for forming a team. 

By | Innovation, People, Rochester

5 Team Building Tips

By Ain CFE Staff

“The world is so complex, no one person has the skills or knowledge to accomplish all that we want to accomplish,” writes Dr. Susan McDaniel, the 2016 American Psychological Association president and University of Rochester professor. “Interdisciplinary teams are the way to make that happen.”

The Ain Center’s Foundry Forum series (new for Fall 2018) is designed to supplement existing entrepreneurship classes and programming. These workshops explore the fundamentals of starting your own venture, including working with a team to accomplish an innovative goal. We held the first Forum on September 27 – Opposites Attract: Turning a Group of Strangers Into a Team. In addition to the usual search for appropriate job skills, awareness of personality can be a major benefit to your startup. Below are 5 key points gleaned from the event.

Know Yourself

Having a solid understanding of your own strengths, skills, and personality can put you on the right track for finding compatible teammates. Once you have a baseline of who you are and what you want, you will be better prepared for working with others who complement and balance your own style.

Embrace Diversity

Don't shy away from those who think differently than you - in fact, you should seek them out! Team leaders should be deliberate about who they assemble. If you have an inclusive, robust team, your company will have strengths in a variety of areas, which can help lead to new opportunities and better brainstorming sessions.

Reference a Typing Tool

There are countless personality assessments out there, each with their own merits and drawbacks. That said, there are plenty of popular ones that large companies and universities alike use to help their constituents learn more about themselves and others. One of our favorites is the MBTI, grounded in the concepts developed by psychologist Carl Jung. MBTI is based on eight basic tendencies that people can identify with. While the traits together may seem complicated, individuals can select just one trait to focus on - that alone can help you understand how others think!

Try a Sample Project

If you are feeling unsure about how you and another person will work together, use a small collaboration to see if your styles mesh well or not. This can be part of your larger goal, or something totally unrelated to your venture. The idea is to feel out the working relationship and see how your actions and thoughts meld. This can also help define the skills you want in a potential team member.

Understand the Importance of a Strong (and Happy!) Team

So much of our lives are spent at work (usually even more for the typical entrepreneur). For both your sake and your venture's, you want to be sure that people are able to work together and accomplish great things. You don't have to love everyone on your team, but fostering a culture of kindness and respect is fundamental to success.

If you have any questions about forming a team or finding possible collaborators, please contact the Ain Center at or use our Entrepreneur ConnectorInterested in attending future Foundry Forums or workshops? Head over to our Events Calendar and register online!