NEW MANAGER'S GUIDE TO SUCCESS
HOW TO HELP GROUPS AND TEAMS WORK AT THEIR BEST
Organisations are becoming aware of the benefits that group and team work can provide by increasing performance standards. As our workforce increases in diversity, the variety of work methods, values and attitudes held by individuals presents a challenge for managers. In maximising group performance, managers find that the most difficult aspect of group work is coordinating diversity.
Groups or Teams?
Groups and teams are not one and the same. Lets find out whether you are working with a group or with a team.
Does the group share leadership roles among individual members?
Are group members accountable for both individual outcomes and group outcomes?
Is the group committed to a common purpose?
Does the group work collectively rather than individually?
Does the group rely on discussion, debate and decision, more than simply sharing information?
Does the group measure performance by collective and individual results, rather than individual results alone?
If you answered Yes to each of these questions, you are dealing with a team.
Teams have been found to perform to a higher standard than work groups. Teams establish focus, momentum and commitment by collectively working to form a meaningful goal.
Building Effective Teams
The most effective teams have the following characteristics:
Group commitment to a common goal
A clear and challenging goal is required to provide direction and focus to your team members. Not only does your team require a common goal, but it also requires specific performance objectives to be defined in order to achieve the broader goal. It is important that all your team members are responsible for the accomplishment of these performance objectives and the overall goal. Further, measures of performance should be established so your workplace team can monitor its progress in meeting its objectives and goals.
Roles and Responsibilities
It is important that your team members have a clear understanding of their individual roles and responsibilities. The roles of team members should provide a balance of different skills, knowledge and abilities. Ideally, these roles should be interdependent and be flexible by allowing individuals to take on new roles when different situations require them to do so. It is important your team shares leadership roles, to some extent, between each of your members.
Effective Communication Structure
Good communication is essential in producing a high-performance team. Your team members must respect and trust one another for optimal team performance. The culture of your organisation must foster open and honest discussion so that all your team members feel able to express any concerns they might have and be involved in debate and decision-making. Make your team smaller rather than larger. Large numbers of people usually have trouble interacting constructively. The best teams have fewer...