The Eden Project Case Study 2

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Case 2: The Eden Project (pp. 417-421 of the Mullins textbook)

1. Smit chooses people he likes and gets on well with to be part of his team. Smit understands the Social Identity Approach and sees everyone as being equal in the group. In doing this he is eliminating self – categorisation. Smit also sees everyone’s individual skills and using the Belbin Team Role Inventory he makes up an effective team ‘Tim’s Secret if there is one, seems to be that he can bring people of very different disciplines and skills together, get them to brainstorm and collaborate and come up with the impossible’ (Vital, j. 2004 quoted in Mullins, L, 2010, p 419). Although there are some risks associated with liking everyone who works for you there is also many benefits.

Tim Smit is taking a positive organisational behaviour approach. He understands that working within an organisation in which he has a good rapport with his colleagues leads to high job satisfaction and high morale for everyone in the team. Having high job satisfaction and high moral means that the team will work harder and will be more creative and energetic ‘They also work outside opening hours often at night to carry out certain potential hazardous activities’ (Mullins, l, 2010, p 420). Another benefit to this strategy is that ‘Teams tend to be a mirror image of their leaders’ (Mullins, l, 2010, p 317). Tim Smit believes that the work environment should be full of people he gets on well with. Co-operation is vital for a team to get work done. The employees will see this and reciprocate Tim’s ability to get on well with and co-operate with each other.

Because of Tim’s fondness for his work colleagues it may lead him to be bias when decision making. In turn this will hinder the progress of the team. Tim needs to be emotionally resilient ‘it also shows some of the very human problems associated with such an enterprise including conflicts of interest between the projects main purpose and some of the professional...
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