Working well in a group is crucial for the success of each individual within a functioning group. This scholarly paper will explore common concepts relating to teams in general, and how it affects the PBL class specifically. It will cover how team building applies to group process and learning. It will also describe the importance of team building in the nursing profession, and as a member of the health care team. Overall, this paper will prove that team building is an important concept in how a group functions, especially within the health care system.
Teams and Team Building
“Teams are examples of synergy in action.” (Campbell, 2003, p. 201). Campbell uses this analogy to depict how a group functions. The definition of synergy is, “the action of two or more substances or organisms to achieve an effect of which each is individually incapable.” (Campbell, 2003, p.201). All in all, this can be related to the well-known saying, that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. Relating this to a team, this means that each person is responsible for their own work. However, the members are “interdependent” (Nazzaro & Strazzabosco, 2009, p.4), which means that the group’s objective is met depending on how everyone in the group interacts with one another. “Team building is a way of encouraging individuals to participate together in activities.” (Toofany, 2007, p.25.). Managers and leaders are those who are play very important roles in team building. Dimock (2007) defines leadership as acts that help the group to accomplish its goals and maintain itself as a group. However, the leader must “understand and respect others,” as well as “concentrate on team building processes.” (Toofany, 2007, p.25.). Baltazar and Mealiea (2005) also state that team building must be an ongoing activity, and it should be one of the manager’s primary responsibilities; they do this by maintaining team climate through their day-to-day activities. Generally, team building refers to activities that improve team performance. These activities can include questionnaires, ice breakers, and other activites which may be fun or serious to cause interaction within the group members. See Appendix A for sample ice breakers.
A team is a “group with a common objective whose members are very clear about working toward one purpose.” (Nazzaro & Strazzabosco, 2009, p.4). As stated by Campbell (2003), a team is defined by what the team must do – by the purpose; the purpose is the reason that the team exists. A purpose is what brings a group of individuals together. According to Campbell (2003), a purpose has 4 important functions. Firstly, it “gives a context for decision making, with a stable point of reference from which to set goals and make plans.” (Campbell, 2003, p.203.). This means that those part of the group, have the opportunity to make decisions, and set realistic goals and objectives. Secondly, it “provides a yard-stick, a measurement of progress of the team...