Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Dynamic Teamwork Groups Success

Team combination is key of success in the challenges. Teammates must work on team dynamics to elevate a group of co-workers into a highly functioning team. Each member must have a place and function on the team and realize he/she has an important role in the success of the team.

This situation may be analogous to a mufti-wheeled  vehicle. For the vehicle to move in the correct direction all tries must have good tread, be properly filled with are, aligned in to the right direction and be the correct type of tire. If even one tire is malfunctioning the vehicle will struggle to maintain direction and risks not arriving at the desired destination.

What can you co to ensure your team functions smoothly especially when you realize one teammate is off track? Whether you are the team leader or one of the group you can contribute to the solution. First you must determine what is wrong. This means asking questions and rally listening to the answers. The best way to do this is to ask open-questions that require more than a "yes" or "no" response. Instead of asking, "Are you happy working here?" you might ask, " what do you like and dislike about the team?" in the proper setting this allows for more thoughtful answers which typically supply more information. It is important to remain non-judgmental. When a complete answer is given, summarize the information and ask an open-ended follow up question.

The tire analogy suggests four types of problems. Let's each one and a potential solution.

Lack of tread - Over time most everyone can become worn down on the job. This happens more frequently when a teammate's assignment is repetitive and no longer challenges the individual. Time off and/pr a change in assignment may help replace the tread and give the sagging teammate more traction.

Low on air - No matter how autonomous individuals may be they need positive feedback on their performance. When teammates don't get their fill of affirmations and recognition, they will begin to feel unappreciated and deflated. Recognize their contribution. Call attention to their work efforts and the role they play in the team's success.

Pointed in the wrong direction - When clear goals are not established teammates may move down different paths. The team leader must clearly define the tasks facing the team. When a goal or task is not defined concisely, seek clarification for yourself and your teammates.

Wrong type - Some jobs and positions turn out to be different than first perceived. A worker may join the team with inaccurate expectations and/or career goals. If this is the cause of poor performance and the teammate clearly understands things will not change, the most appropriate action is rotation off the team. No one likes to be fired and seeking new employment in this economy can be difficult. However, staying in a position or with a company when one's heart is not connected to the job does a disservice to both the team and the unhappy teammate.

Human dynamics are complex and not easily untangled. Team work requires all teammates be energetic, recognized for their efforts, understand their goals and vocationally fulfilled. Each teammate and the team leader can optimize tam functionality by watching now the rubber meets the road. "Wishing" may not make it happen but a concerted effort by all involved to achieve the group goals can make the team a success.

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