There are many different factors that influence and determine the potential success or failure of teams, largely irrespective of whether those teams are within the realm of business, politics, entertainment, or sports. In general, teams whose members share common perceptions about their purpose and goals, teams whose members trust one another and whose members trust their managers and leaders; teams whose members communicate and coordinate their efforts efficiently; and teams whose members can resolve conflict and disagreements effectively and productively tend to be more successful than teams whose members do not.
Establishing and Maintaining a Shared Vision
One of the most fundamental determinants of the relative success or failure of teams is the degree to which the individual team members maintain a shared vision of their mission, purpose, and goals (Wooden & Jamison 2005). This should become somewhat apparent just by understanding the significance of clearly defined purposes and goals, largely because the failure to establish shared goals allows so much room for different approaches to presumed goals that those differences typically undermine the efforts of individual team members to achieve any goals together (Miller 2009). Conversely, where team members all share the same conceptual understanding of the mission, purpose, and goals, they are much more likely to make efforts in their respective areas of responsibility that support the achievement of unified team objectives (Miller 2009).
For example, if some members of a retail sales organisation believe that the goal of their department is to maximise the volume of sales while other members of the department believe that the goal of their department is to maximise customer satisfaction, the policies, practices, and operational procedures necessary to optimally achieve the former goal will often conflict with those necessary to optimally achieve the latter. In many circumstances, their lack of a shared vision might result in outright conflicts that are incapable of being resolved, or that are at least highly resistant to easy resolution. By necessity, some of the operational and resource-management decisions designed to maximise sales volume conflict outright with some of the decisions that correspond to maximising customer service, appreciation, and loyalty.
Planning and Role Identities
Effective planning is critical to the success of teams because complex objectives can rarely be achieved through unplanned, spontaneous, or ad hoc efforts, even in realms of achievement where natural ability is a principal determinant of success at the individual level (Wooden & Jamison, 2005). Naturally, if that principle is true in sports where so-called “God-given” individual talent is so important, it holds even more true in other areas where success is...