This paper will cover several topics related to high-performing teams and work groups. It will discuss how these two kinds of workplace people sets and how they differ in their pursuit of organizational strategy and compare these differences to virtual teams. It will identify the characteristics of successful leaders of high-performing teams and finally discuss why high-performing teams are important to organizations. High-Performing Teams and Work Groups
Before we can define high-performing teams or work groups, we will need to define the term team first. A team can be defined as a small number of people with complementary skills who are committed to a common purpose, set of performance goals, and approach for which they hold themselves mutually accountable. "That definition lays down the discipline that teams must share to be effective (Katzenbach, 2005). Organizations utilize teams to perform operational and project based tasks. People working in teams have the capacity to solve complex problems that cannot be solved by individuals working alone. People working in teams bring more resources to a task, including a variety of perspectives, knowledge, skills, and experience (Capella University, 2008). This diversity of perspectives, knowledge, skills, and experience allows a team to outperform the sum of its parts and is a critical component of a team being labeled as a high-performing team. Teams come in many forms, they can be permanent or temporary, they can be leader-led or self-managed, and they can be co-located or virtual. Regardless of their purpose and form, all teams are made up of individuals interacting interdependently to achieve common organizational goal. Furthermore, all teams share the following: clear boundaries, common tasks, differentiated member roles, autonomy, dependence on others, and collective responsibility (Capella University, 2008). Teams definitely are forms of work groups, but not all work groups are teams...
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