When two people walk together, they must share some common goals for the journey. Before embarking on a journey, the two, agree on what they want, where to get it, and how to get there.

The same theory applies for the Jobs Plus workforce development program at BronxWorks. The journey leads to ensuring that residents of public housing in the Bronx increase their employment, earnings and financial self-sufficiency.

TEAM BLUE is defined, “Together Everyone Accomplishes More by Learning, Understanding and Empowering”. Developed by the staff of Jobs Plus, the name TEAM BLUE describes the spirit of the team and acts a reminder of the program’s mission. As part of TEAM BLUE, discussed below is my observations to the meaning of it in practice:

Together: Achievement of a common goal is not a one mans show. In order to build and motivate staff, exceptional leadership and strong morale must be present. This is the essence of the Jobs Plus team. For example, there are different units in the program that work together and coordinate tirelessly to contribute to the mission of helping South Bronx residents obtain self-sufficiency. Close-knit relationships motivate employees in parallel and align them to work harder, cooperate and be supportive of one another. 

Everyone: My work supervisor always says, “Everyone is a CEO of their job.” This implies that to be part of the togetherness mentioned above, there is an individual responsibility for everyone to be on top of their duties and consider themselves the last point inline of that duty. Every position is equally important, and each team member must understand the intricacies of every role to maximize their own efficiency.

Accomplishes: Despite the financial incentive that comes with employment, if we work and never witness our impact, working would not be worthwhile. Witnessing accomplishments motivates people to carry on. The greatest feeling working as a member of TEAM   BLUE is being an active participant in transforming people’s lives and inspiring them to be the best they can be.

More: Another reference is to my supervisors’ favorite lines, “100% is not good enough, one needs to go beyond 100%”. Accomplishments can be certain but accomplishing more is fulfilling. With other people’s support and efforts one can accomplish more than 100%

By: According to TEAM BLUE, the following are some of the great tips on how everyone can achieve more:

Learning: Lifelong learning is a vital tool for every career and organization. Information and continued learning nourish our minds and results to productivity. At Jobs Plus, information sharing plays a major role in achieving results. It is believed that not one idea is a best fit for offering solutions hence the need for sharing ideas and being positive about learning and receiving feedback.  

Understanding: Mastering what you learn is essential in delivering what is expected of you. Jobs Plus offers learning opportunities with technical experts and it becomes the responsibility of everyone in search for excellence to understand, focus and apply the knowledge gained which has led to successful implementation.

Empowering:  Leadership plays a big role in empowering staff to be the best they can be in order to achieve results.  This goes back to, “everyone is the CEO of their job” ideology. Employees are given room to come up with innovating solutions to problems rather than always being told of what to do.