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Working in teams

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Introduction

Working in teams The terms 'groups' and 'teams' are generally used interchangeably. However, there are differences, and a team can be regarded as a group of people who come together for a defined task. It may mean that they then split up once the task is complete. In order for teams to work well, they need to understand how people work in groups. A team is a group of people who share a common objective and need to work together in order to achieve it. For example, a group of drama students putting on a play, a group of physicists working on a group research project, or a group of music students putting on a concert share the same common objective. However, they cannot achieve this unless they pool their talents and expertise in a team effort. Teams can help to approach problems in new ways. They can also help people to learn, as fellow team members may raise ideas which a person would never have thought of if he/she was working on his/her own. When they are successful, teams are often said to achieve something which is greater than the sum of their individual parts. Working as a team can be very frustrating. People have to compromise, negotiate and to trust that others will do a task to the high standard . Teams can take a while to form as you get to know each other and find out how each other works. Group is a number of individuals or things considered together because of similarities e.g. a small group of supporters across the country. ...read more.

Middle

Teams run into trouble when they do not allocate their time well. In such teams everyone notices the error but no one is willing to offer helpful solutions. Open communication- Members of effective teams keep each other informed. They discuss individual work and let others know when they will be late or missing. Lack of communication results in individuals working alone too much unaware of how their work fits with that of others. Team spirit- Well Structured teams develop pride & loyalty in their group. They stand up for the group and speak positively about it. They are committed to the group and do not view it as an impediment to the accomplishment of individual goals. Mutual support- Members in well structured teams support one another and vocalise that support. They compliment and publicise each other's contributions and successes. Conversely, poor teams will comprise those who have little awareness of individual input. The members in well structured team will also be aware of each others strength and weakness and will help to minimise those weakness. Personal development - Mutual support could also lead to personal development so for example if the team members think that an individual in the team lacks experience in certain area of the job or project then the individual could be given an opportunity for personal development . This could be either on-the-job training from within the team itself or it could be delivered by some one else. This will be good for the organisation, the team itself and the individual who is been given an opportunity for personal development. ...read more.

Conclusion

These forces might include: * Personality styles (e.g.: including or excluding people) * Team Roles (e.g.: who does what) * Office layout (e.g.: cupboards dividing teams into two) * Tools and technology (e.g.: email, bulletin board, information pool enabling hidden communication). * Organisational culture (e.g.: company cars acting as status symbols to separate groups of employees) * Processes/methodologies/procedures(e.g.: problem-solving methodology) Suppose in a small team of six people working in one office there are two people who have a particularly strong friendship. This friendship is a "natural force" that may have an influence on the rest of the team, and can be manifest in various ways, either positively or negatively. Other factors can also play an influence. For example, if a wall of cupboards were to be placed across the middle of the office, this would also form a 'natural force' that influences the communication flow and may separate the group into two further sub-groups. Leadership problems- Often it is assumed that the senior person in the team should be the team leader but that is not the right way to choose the leader just by assuming that if they are senior then they will have all the correct skills and characteristics to become a good leader. A lot of planning should also be done when choosing a leader. Members opinions should be taken in account and most importantly skills and characteristics of a member should be considered very carefully according to the task when choosing him/her to become the leader. Conflicts of interest- When there are no clear goals, the team is poorly managed or the team is appearing to fail, personal goals will predominate. Individuals will be seeking to dissociate themselves form group responsibility and will fail to give support to other members or accept group accountability. ...read more.

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