Developing a High Performance Team
Purpose: In today’s industries, companies demand a kind of responsiveness, speed, and quality that is beyond the reach of individual performance. High performance teams generate commitment and provide the structures that inspire employees to give their very best effort. Compared to employees working alone, teams make better decisions, products, and services. Companies rely on team’s ability to perform at high levels and quickly adapt to escalating demands. With the right number of people and complimentary skills teams work together and fuse their talents to deliver tangible performance results. Teams commit to a common purpose for which they hold themselves collectively accountable.
Empowerment: Employee empowerment involves job satisfaction, decision making, trust, rewards, and autonomy. Employee involvement in the decision making process creates an environment were team members have an impact on decisions and actions that affect their job. Employee empowerment requires training in the skills necessary to accomplish the additional responsibilities. Managers need to demonstrate genuine commitment to employee’s well being. Provide freedom and independence for team members’ discretion in scheduling work and determining the procedures to be used to complete the work. Reward by recognizing employees for a job well done to strengthen employee engagement.
Roles: Every team member is expected to play a role in a team to maintain the team’s functioning. The following table shows Meredith Belbin’s team role theory which is the most popular. It identifies nine team roles related to specific personality characteristics. For optimal performance, all nine roles must be engaged.
Belbin’s Team Roles
Role Title Contributions Allowance Weaknesses Plant
Creative, imaginative, unorthodox. Solves difficult problems.
Ignores details. Too preoccupied to communicate effectively. Resource Investigator
Extrovert, enthusiastic, communicative. Explores opportunities. Develops contacts.
Overoptimistic. Loses interest once initial enthusiasm has passed. Coordinator
Mature, confident, a good chairperson. Clarifies goals, promotes decision making, delegates well.
Can be seen as manipulative. Delegates personal work. Shaper
Challenging, dynamic, thrives on pressure. Has the drive and courage to overcome obstacles.
Can provoke others. Hurts people’s feelings. Monitor/evaluator
Sober, strategic, discerning. Sees all options. Judges accurately.
Lacks drive and ability to inspire others. Overly critical. Team worker
Cooperative, mild, perceptive, diplomatic. Listens, builds, averts friction, calms the waters.
Indecisive in crunch situations. Can be easily influenced. Implementer
Disciplined, reliable, conservative, efficient. Turns ideas into practical actions.
Somewhat inflexible. Slow to respond to new possibilities. Completer/Finisher
Painstacking, conscientious, anxious. Searches out errors and omissions. Delivers on time.
Inclined to worry unduly. Reluctant to delegate. Can be a nitpicker. Specialist
Single-minded, self-starting, dedicated. Provides knowledge and skills in rare supply.
Contributes on only a narrow front. Dwells on technicalities. Overlooks the “big picture.”
Feedback: Feedback communication is a good avenue to performance greatness. Giving and receiving constructive feedback, with an open mind, can be used to identify suitable changes in personal performance to improve performance. Team members need to know what they are doing well and what they are not doing so well. Suggestions on how to improve may also be given in the right way and with the right intentions.
Optimal performance: “With today’s changing environment effective team-building and peak performance programs will assist your organization in achieving a higher level of success. Successful teams demand a clear understanding and...
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