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Team and Building Effective Teams

By akinaisolto Mar 10, 2011 23153 Words
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SKILL ASSESSMENT
Diagnostic Surveys for Building Effective Teams
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Team Development Behaviors Diagnosing the Need for Team Building

SKILL LEARNING
Developing Teams and Teamwork The Advantages of Teams Leading Teams Team Membership Team Development Summary Behavioral Guidelines

SKILL ANALYSIS
Cases Involving Building Effective Teams
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Building Effective Teams and Teamwork
LEARNING OBJECTIVES
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The Tallahassee Democrat ’s ELITE Team The Cash Register Incident

SKILL PRACTICE
Exercises in Building Effective Teams
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IMPLEMENT PRINCIPLES OF EFFECTIVE TEAM LEADERSHIP FOSTER EFFECTIVE TEAM MEMBERSHIP DIAGNOSE AND FACILITATE TEAM DEVELOPMENT BUILD HIGH-PERFORMANCE TEAMS

Team Diagnosis and Team Development Exercise Winning the War on Talent

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SKILL APPLICATION
Activities for Building Effective Teams
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Suggested Assignments Application Plan and Evaluation

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SKILL ASSESSMENT
DIAGNOSTIC SURVEYS FOR BUILDING EFFECTIVE TEAMS
TEAM DEVELOPMENT BEHAVIORS
Step 1: Before you read the material in this chapter, respond to the following statements by writing a number from the rating scale that follows in the left-hand column (Preassessment). Your answers should reflect your attitudes and behavior as they are now, not as you would like them to be. Be honest. This instrument is designed to help you discover your level of competency in building effective teams so you can tailor your learning to your specific needs. When you have completed the survey, use the scoring key in Appendix 1 to identify the skill areas discussed in this chapter that are most important for you to master. Step 2: After you have completed the reading and the exercises in this chapter and, ideally, as many as you can of the Skill Application assignments at the end of this chapter, cover up your first set of answers. Then respond to the same statements again, this time in the right-hand column (Post-assessment). When you have completed the survey, use the scoring key in the Appendix to measure your progress. If your score remains low in specific skill areas, use the behavioral guidelines at the end of the Skill Learning section to guide your further practice. Rating Scale 1 2 3 4 5 6 Strongly disagree Disagree Slightly disagree Slightly agree Agree Strongly agree

Assessment PrePostWhen I am in the role of leader in a team: 1. I know how to establish credibility and influence among team members. 2. I behave congruently with my stated values and I demonstrate a high degree of integrity. 3. I am clear and consistent about what I want to achieve. 4. I create positive energy by being optimistic and complimentary of others. 5. I build a common base of agreement in the team before moving forward with task accomplishment. 6. I encourage and coach team members to help them improve. 7. I share information with team members and encourage participation. 8. I articulate a clear, motivating vision of what the team can achieve along with specific short-term goals. 444 CHAPTER 9 BUILDING EFFECTIVE TEAMS AND TEAMWORK

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When I am in the role of team member: 9. I know a variety of ways to facilitate task accomplishment in the team. 10. I know a variety of ways to help build strong relationships and cohesion among team members. 11. I confront and help to overcome negative, dysfunctional, or blocking behaviors by others. 12. I shift roles from facilitating task accomplishment to helping build trusting relationships among members, depending on what the team needs to move forward. When I desire to make my team perform well, regardless of whether I am a leader or member: 13. I am knowledgeable about the different stages of team development experienced by most teams. 14. I help establish clear expectations and purpose as well as help team members feel comfortable with one another at the outset of a team. 15. I encourage team members to become as committed to the success of the team as to their own personal success. 16. I help team members become committed to the team’s vision and goals. 17. I help the team avoid groupthink by making sure that sufficient diversity of opinions are expressed in the team. 18. I diagnose and capitalize on my team’s core competencies, or unique strengths. 19. I encourage the team to continuously improve as well as to seek for dramatic innovations. 20. I encourage exceptionally high standards of performance and outcomes that far exceed expectations.

DIAGNOSING

THE

NEED

FOR

TEAM BUILDING

Teamwork has been found to dramatically affect organizational performance. Some managers have credited teams with helping them to achieve incredible results. However, teams don’t work all the time in all organizations. Therefore, managers must decide when teams should be organized. To determine the extent to which teams should be built in your organization, complete the instrument below. Think of an organization in which you participate (or will participate) that produces a product or service. Answer these questions with that organization in mind. Write a number from a scale of 1 to 5 in the blank at the left; 1 indicates that there is little evidence; 5 indicates there is a lot of evidence. 1. Output has declined or is lower than desired. 2. Complaints, grievances, or low morale are present or are increasing. 3. Conflicts or hostility between members is present or is increasing. 4. Some people are confused about assignments, or their relationships with other people are unclear. 5. Lack of clear goals and lack of commitment to goals exist. 6. Apathy or lack of interest and involvement by members is in evidence. BUILDING EFFECTIVE TEAMS AND TEAMWORK CHAPTER 9

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7 .Insufficient innovation, risk taking, imagination, or initiative exists. 8. Ineffective and inefficient meetings are common. 9. Working relationships across levels and units are unsatisfactory. 10. Lack of coordination among functions is apparent. 11. Poor communication exists; people are afraid to speak up; listening is not occurring; and information is not being shared. 12. Lack of trust exists among members and between members and senior leaders. 13. Decisions are made that some members don’t understand or with which they don’t agree. 14. People feel that good work is not rewarded or that rewards are unfairly administered. 15. People are not encouraged to work together for the good of the organization. 16. Customers and suppliers are not part of organizational decision making. 17 .People work too slowly and there is too much redundancy in the work being done. 18. Issues and challenges that require the input of more than one person are being faced. 19. People must coordinate their activities in order for the work to be accomplished. 20. Difficult challenges that no single person can resolve or diagnose are being faced. Source: Dyer, W. G. (1987). Team building: Issues and alternatives. Reading, MA: AddisonWesley. Reprinted with permission of Addison-Wesley.

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SKILL LEARNING
Developing Teams and Teamwork
Near the home of one of the authors of this book, scores of Canada geese spend the winter. They fly over the house to the nature pond nearby almost every morning. What is distinctive about these flights is that the geese always fly in a V pattern. The reason for this pattern is that the flapping wings of the geese in front create an updraft for the geese that follow. This V pattern increases the range of the geese collectively by 71 percent compared to flying alone. On long flights, after the lead goose has flown at the front of the V for awhile, it drops back to take a place in the V where the flying is easier. Another goose then takes over the lead position, where the flying is most strenuous. If a goose begins to fly out of formation, it is not long before it returns to the V because of the resistance it experiences when not supported by the wing flapping of the other geese. Another noticeable feature of these geese is the loud honking that occurs when they fly. Canada geese never fly quietly. One can always tell when they are in the air because of the noise. The reason for the honking is not random, however. It occurs among geese in the rear of the formation in order to encourage the lead goose. The leader doesn’t honk—just those who are supporting and urging on the leader. If a goose is shot, becomes ill, or falls out of formation, two geese break ranks and follow the wounded or ill goose to the ground. There they remain, nurturing their companion, until it is either well enough to return to the flock or it dies. This remarkable phenomenon serves as an apt metaphor for our chapter on teamwork. The lessons garnered from the flying V formation help highlight important attributes of effective teams and skillful teamwork. For example: ❏ ❏









Effective teams function so well that they create their own magnetism. Like geese, team members desire to affiliate with a team because of the advantages they receive from membership. Effective teams do not always have the same leader. As with geese, leadership responsibility often rotates and is shared broadly as teams develop over time. In effective teams, members care for and nurture one another. No member is devalued or unappreciated. All are treated as an integral part of the team. Effective teams have members who cheer for and bolster the leader, and vice versa. Mutual encouragement is given and received by each member. Effective teams have a high level of trust among members. Members demonstrate integrity and are interested in others’ success as well as their own.

Effective teams have interdependent members. Like geese, the productivity and efficiency of an entire unit is determined by the coordinated, interactive efforts of all its members. ❏ Effective teams help members be more efficient working together than alone. Like geese, effective teams outperform even the best individual’s performance.

Because any metaphor can be carried to extremes, we do not wish to overemphasize the similarities between Canada geese and work teams. However, these seven attributes of effective teams do serve as the nucleus of this chapter. They will help us identify ways for you to improve your abilities to lead a team, to be an effective team member, and to foster effective team processes. Our intent is to identify proven techniques and skills that will help you function more effectively in team settings. One important reason for this emphasis on teams is that participation in teams is fun for most people. There is something inherently attractive about being engaged in teamwork. Consider, for example, the two advertisements that appeared next to one another in a metropolitan newspaper, both seeking to fill the same type of position. They are reproduced in Figure 1. While neither advertisement is negative nor inappropriate, they are noticeably different. Which job would you rather take? Which firm would you rather work for? For most of us, the team-focused job seems much more desirable. For that reason, we will focus here on helping you to flourish in these kinds of team settings. 447

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Figure 1

A Team-Oriented and a Traditional Advertisement for a Position

Our Team Needs One Good Multiskilled Maintenance Associate Our Team is down one good player. Join our group of multiskilled Maintenance Associates who work together to support our assembly teams at American Automotive Manufacturing. We are looking for a versatile person with skills in one or more of the following: ability to set up and operate various welding machinery, knowledge in electric arc and M.I.G. welding, willingness to work on detailed projects for extended time periods, and general overall knowledge of the automobile manufacturing process. Willingness to learn all maintenance skills a must. You must be a real team player, have excellent interpersonal skills, and be motivated to work in a highly participative environment. Send qualifications to: AM M American Automotive Manufacturing P.O. Box 616 Ft. Wayne, Indiana 48606 Include phone number. We respond to all applicants.

Maintenance Technician/Welder Leading automotive manufacturer looking for Maintenance Technician/Welder. Position requires the ability to set up and operate various welding machinery and a general knowledge of the automobile production process. Vocational school graduates or 3–5 years of on-the-job experience required. Competitive salary, full benefits, and tuition reimbursement offered. Interviews Monday, May 6, at the Holiday Inn South, 3000 Semple Road, 9:00 A.M. to 7:00 P.M. Please bring pay stub as proof of last employment.

NMC

National Motors Corporation 5169 Blane Hill Center Springfield, Illinois 62707

The Advantages of Teams
Whether one is a manager, a subordinate, a student, or a homemaker, it is almost impossible to avoid being a member of a team. Some form of teamwork permeates most people’s daily lives. Most of us are members of discussion groups, friendship groups, neighborhood groups, sports teams, or even families in which tasks are accomplished and interpersonal interaction occurs. Teams, in other words, are simply groups of people who are interdependent in the tasks they perform, affect one another’s behavior through interaction, and see themselves as a unique entity. What we discuss in this chapter is applicable to team activity in most kinds of settings, although we focus mainly on teams and teamwork in employing organizations rather than in homes, classrooms, or in the world of sports. The principles of effective team performance, team leadership, and team participation we address here, however, are virtually the same across all these kinds of teams. For example, empowered teams, autonomous work groups, semiautonomous teams, self-managing

teams, self-determining teams, crews, platoons, crossfunctional teams, top management teams, quality circles, project teams, task forces, virtual teams, emergency response teams, and committees are all examples of the various manifestations of teams and teamwork that appear in the scholarly literature, and research has been conducted on each of these forms of teams. Our focus is on helping you develop skills that are relevant in most or all these kinds of situations, whether as a team leader or a team member. Developing team skills is important because of the tremendous explosion in the use of teams in work organizations over the last decade. For example, 79 percent of Fortune 1000 companies reported that they used self-managing work teams, and 91 percent reported that employee work groups were being utilized (Lawler, 1998; Lawler, Mohrman, & Ledford, 1995). A survey of 1,293 U.S. organizations by the American Society for Quality Control (ASQC) and the Gallup Organization found that over 80 percent of respondents reported involvement in some form of work-team activity, mainly problem-solving teams

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(ASQC, 1993). Possessing the ability to lead and manage teams and teamwork, in other words, has become a commonplace requirement in most organizations. In one survey, the most desired skill of new employees was found to be the ability to work in a team. One noted management consultant, Tom Peters (1987: p 306), even asserted: Are there any limits to the use of teams? Can we find places or circumstances where a team structure doesn’t make sense? Answer: No, as far as I can determine. That’s unequivocal, and meant to be. Some situations may seem to lend themselves more to team-based management than others. Nonetheless, I observe that the power of the team is so great that it is often wise to violate apparent common sense and force a team structure on almost anything. One reason for the escalation in the desirability of teamwork is that increasing amounts of data show improvements in productivity, quality, and morale when teams are utilized. Many companies have attributed their improvements in performance directly to the institution of teams in the workplace (Cohen & Bailey, 1997; Guzzo & Dickson, 1996; Katzenbach & Smith, 1993; Senge, 1991). For example, by using teams in their organizations: ❏



AT&T’s Richmond operator service increased service quality by 12 percent. ❏ Dana Corporation’s Minneapolis valve plant trimmed customer lead time from six months to six weeks. ❏ General Mills plants became 40 percent more productive than plants operating without teams. Table 1 reports the positive relationships between employee involvement in teams and several dimensions of organizational and worker effectiveness. Lawler, Mohrman, and Ledford (1995) found that among firms that were actively using teams, both organizational and individual effectiveness were above average and improving in virtually all categories of performance. In firms without teams or in which teams were infrequently used, effectiveness was average or low in all categories. Of course, a variety of factors can affect the performance and usefulness of teams. Teams are not inherently effective just because they exist (Jassawalla & Sashittal, 2003; Maier, 1967). A Sports Illustrated cover story, for example, labeled a former Los Angeles Clippers NBA basketball team the worst team in the history of professional sports (Lidz, 2000)—evidence that just because a group of highly talented people get together in a team does not mean it can perform well. Hackman (1993) identified a set of common inhibitors to effective team performance, including rewarding and recognizing individuals instead of the team, not maintaining stability of membership over time, not providing team members with autonomy, not fostering interdependence among team members, and failing to orient all team members. In contradiction to Peters’s comments about the universal utility of teams, Verespei (1990) observed: All too often corporate chieftains read the success stories and ordain their companies to adopt work teams—NOW. Work teams don’t always work and may even be the wrong solution to the situation in question. “Diagnosing the Need for Team Building,” in the Skill Assessment section of this chapter, helps identify the extent to which the work teams you are involved in are performing effectively, and the extent to which they need team building. Often, teams can take too long to make decisions, they can drive out effective action with groupthink, and they can create confusion, conflict, and frustration for their members. All of

❏ ❏

❏ ❏ ❏ ❏



Shenandoah Life Insurance Company in Roanoke, Virginia, saved $200,000 annually because of reduced staffing needs, while increasing its volume 33 percent. Westinghouse Furniture Systems increased productivity 74 percent in three years. AAL increased productivity by 20 percent, cut personnel by 10 percent, and handled 10 percent more transactions. FedEx cut service errors by 13 percent. Carrier reduced unit turnaround time from two weeks to two days. Volvo’s Kalamar facility reduced defects by 90 percent. General Electric’s Salisbury, North Carolina, plant increased productivity by 250 percent compared to other GE plants producing the same product. Corning cellular ceramics plant decreased defect rates from 1,800 parts per million to 9 parts per million.

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Table 1

Impact of Involvement in Teams on Organizations and Workers
PERCENTAGE INDICATING IMPROVEMENT 78 75 69 66 60 50 48 47 PERCENTAGE INDICATING POSITIVE IMPACT 70 67 66 63 61 50 45 23 22

PERFORMANCE CRITERIA Changed management style to more participatory Improved organizational processes and procedures Improved management decision making Increased employee trust in management Improved implementation of technology Elimination of layers of management supervision Improved safety and health Improved union–management relations PERFORMANCE CRITERIA Quality of products and services Customer service Worker satisfaction Employee quality of work life Productivity Competitiveness Profitability Absenteeism Turnover (N = 439 of the Fortune 1000 firms)

Source: Lawler, E. E., Mohrman, S. A., & Ledford, G. E. (1992). Creating high performance organizations: Practices and results of employee involvement and total quality in Fortune 1000 companies. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.

us have been irritated by being members of an inefficient team, a team dominated by a single person, a team with slothful members, or a team in which standards are compromised in order to get agreement from everyone. The common adage that “a camel is a horse designed by a team” illustrates one of the many potential liabilities of a team. A great deal of research has been conducted to identify the factors associated with high performance in teams. Factors such as team composition (e.g., heterogeneity of members, size of the team, familiarity among team members), team motivation (e.g., team potency, team goals, team feedback), team type (e.g., virtual teams, cockpit crews, quality circles), and team structure (e.g., team member autonomy, team norms, team decision-making processes) have been studied to determine how best to form and lead teams (see comprehensive reviews by Cohen & Bailey, 1997; Guzzo & Dickson, 1996). Several thousand studies of groups and teams have appeared in just the last decade. Self450 CHAPTER 9 BUILDING EFFECTIVE TEAMS AND TEAMWORK

managing work teams, problem-solving teams, therapy groups, task forces, interpersonal growth groups, student project teams, and many other kinds of teams have been studied extensively. Studies have ranged from teams meeting for just one session to teams whose longevity extends over several years. Membership in teams has varied widely, ranging from children to aged people, top executives to line workers, students to instructors, volunteers to prison inmates, professional athletes to playground toddlers. The analyses have included a variety of predictors of performance such as team member roles, unconscious cognitive processes, group dynamics, problem-solving strategies, communication patterns, leadership actions, interpersonal needs, decision-making quality, innovativeness, and productivity (e.g., Ancona & Caldwell, 1992; Gladstein, 1984; Senge, 1991; Wellins, Byham, & Wilson, 1991). We will not spend time in this chapter reviewing the extensive literature associated with teams nor the

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multitude of factors that have been associated with team performance. Instead, we focus on a few key skills that will help you participate effectively in most kinds of teams. We particularly focus here on teams that are faced with a task to accomplish. This may be a work team at your job, a project team composed of fellow students, an ad hoc team discussing an issue, or a self-managing team in a service organization. Regardless of the form of the team, you will want to improve your skills in helping the team become a highperforming unit. We will concentrate first on helping you to effectively lead your team, then on being an effective member of a team, and finally on facilitating effective team development.

Leading Teams
In highly effective teams, members’ behavior is interdependent, and personal goals are subservient to the accomplishment of the team goal. A commitment to and desire for team membership is present. Even though individuals may be formally designated as a team, if they act so as to bring exclusive credit to themselves, to accomplish their own objectives instead of the team’s objective, or to maintain independence from others, they are not truly a team, regardless of their name. A key challenge, then, is to find ways to create the elements of an effective team—interdependence, efficiency, magnetism, shared responsibility, mutual encouragement, and trust—when individuals may have had no prior commitment to one another or to a common task. One key attribute of effective teams is an effective leader. Because teams are so pervasive, most effective leaders are skillful at leading teams. One of the most effective team leaders we know is retired General Gus Pagonis, who led one of the highest-performing teams in recent history—the team formed to plan and conduct the logistical support for the United States’ engagement in the 1990 Persian Gulf War (Desert Storm). Pagonis’s team was organized as a result of President Bush’s announcement that the United States would send troops to Saudi Arabia in order to confront Iraqi aggression in Kuwait. The tasks Pagonis faced were daunting. He was charged with building a team that could transport over half a million people and their personal belongings to the other side of the world on short notice. But transporting the people was only part of the challenge. Supporting them once they arrived, moving them into position for a surprise attack, supporting their battle plans, and then getting them and their equipment back

home in record time were even greater challenges. Over 122 million meals had to be planned, moved, and served—approximately the number eaten by all the residents of Wyoming and Vermont in three months. Fuel (1.3 billion gallons) had to be pumped— about the same amount used in Montana, North Dakota, and Idaho in a year—in order to support soldiers driving 52 million miles. Tanks, planes ammunition, carpenters, cashiers, morticians, social workers, doctors, and a host of support personnel had to be transported, coordinated, fed, and housed. More than 500 new traffic signs had to be constructed and installed in order to help individuals speaking several different languages navigate the relatively featureless terrain of Saudi Arabia. Five hundred tons of mail had to be sorted and processed each day. Over 70,000 contracts with suppliers had to be negotiated and executed. All green-colored equipment—over 12,000 tracked vehicles and 117,000 wheeled vehicles—had to be repainted desert brown and then repainted green when shipped home. Soldiers had to be trained to fit in with an unfamiliar culture that was intolerant of typical soldier relaxation activity. Supplies had to be distributed at a moment’s notice to several different locations, some of them behind enemy lines, in the heat of battle. Traffic control was monumental, as evidenced by one key checkpoint near the front where 18 vehicles per minute passed, seven days a week, 24 hours a day, for six weeks. Over 60,000 enemy prisoners of war had to be transported, cared for, and detained. Because the war ended far sooner than predicted, an even more daunting challenge presented itself— getting all those supplies and personnel back home. Most of the equipment, ammunition, and food had to be brought back home because it had been unpacked but was mostly unused. That required thorough scrubbing to remove microorganisms or pests and re–shrinkwrapping a huge amount of supplies. Large, bulk containers had been broken up into smaller units during the war, so it took twice as long to gather and ship materials out of Saudi Arabia as it did to ship them in. Yet, personnel were eager to return home at the end of the campaign, so the pressure for speed was at least as great as at the outset of the war. In short, Pagonis’s team faced a set of tasks that had never before been accomplished on that scale, and they were to do it in a time frame that would have been laughable if it weren’t factual. The team leadership skills used to accomplish these tasks were detailed in Pagonis’s 1993 book, Moving Mountains. Pagonis was awarded a third star during Desert Storm (the military’s code name for the BUILDING EFFECTIVE TEAMS AND TEAMWORK CHAPTER 9

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war) as a result of his outstanding leadership in the field of battle. He helped plan and execute the famous “end run” that took Saddam Hussein’s Iraqi army completely by surprise. Most observers now agree that it was the success of the logistics team that really won the Persian Gulf War for the United States and saved tens of thousands of lives. Of course, the skills demonstrated by General Pagonis are not idiosyncratic. Rather, they are observed in almost all effective team leaders. We highlight two especially critical aspects of team leadership here. Not only are these two aspects of team leadership observable in Pagonis, but they have emerged in the scholarly literature as critical factors in leading almost any kind of team (Druskat & Wheeler, 2001; Edmonson, 1999; Hackman, 1990). The first is developing credibility and influence among team members. The second is establishing a motivating vision and goals for the team.

know my style? Or would I rather have the world’s second best port operation officer who knew my style intimately and was comfortable with it? The answer was obvious; we couldn’t waste time fighting our own systems. Equally important, we couldn’t afford the time that would be wasted as a new person tried to impress me, or get on my good side. We needed an instant body of leaders, strengthened by a united front. We needed to know that we could depend on one another unconditionally. We needed the confidence that the mission, and not personal advancement, would always be paramount in the mind of each participant. (Pagonis, 1993: 78, 84) In this chapter, we highlight other specific behaviors you can use to help establish leadership credibility in a team. Team members, of course, will not follow a person whom they don’t trust, who is two-faced or insincere, or whose motives appear to be personal aggrandizement instead of the welfare of the team. In fact, Kouzes and Posner (2002) identified credibility as the single most important requirement for leadership effectiveness. Once credibility has been established, then a vision for the team can be articulated and the team can move toward high performance. The following seven behaviors are keys to building and maintaining credibility and influence among team members. Whereas they are simple and straightforward, much scholarly evidence exists that supports their efficacy (see Cialdini, 1995; Druskat & Wheeler, 2000; Hackman, 1990; Katzenbach & Smith, 1993; Kramer, 1999; Manz & Sims, 1987; Turner, 2000). 1. Demonstrate integrity. Chief among the behaviors that create leadership credibility is the demonstration of integrity. Integrity means that you do what you say, you behave congruently with your values, and you are believable in what you espouse. Some people call this “walking the talk” or “talking the walk.” Credibility is dependent on having team members believe that the leader is trustworthy, that hidden agendas or unspoken motives are absent, and that the leader demonstrates justice and fairness. Individuals who appear to say one thing and do another, who are not honest in their feedback, or who do not follow through with promises are perceived to lack integrity and are ineffective as leaders of teams. 2. Be clear and consistent. Expressing certainty about what you want and where you are

DEVELOPING CREDIBILITY
Effective leaders have the respect and commitment of team members; that is, they develop credibility (Kouzes & Posner, 2002). Establishing credibility and the capacity to influence team members are the first key challenges faced by leaders of teams. Except in rare circumstances (e.g., in a crisis), leading a team by command or direct control is much less effective than leading through influence and indirect control (Druskat & Wheeler, 2000; Hackman, 1987). Consequently, we focus on ways that you can be effective by working with team members rather than working on team members. Giving directions, articulating goals, or trying to motivate team members are all wasted efforts if you have not established credibility and respect. General Pagonis described this leadership challenge in the following way: I have found, time and time again in commands around the world, that my troops are more invested in their work and better motivated when they understand and buy into the ultimate goals of the operation. Reason counts for far more than rank, when it comes to motivation. And motivation is the root of all organizational progress. Over the years I have developed a very distinctive leadership style. Gus Pagonis’s command style, like everyone else’s, is unique. This meant that I had choices to make. Would I rather have the world’s best port operation officer, if he was someone who didn’t already 452 CHAPTER 9 BUILDING EFFECTIVE TEAMS AND TEAMWORK

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going, without being dogmatic or stubborn, helps produce confidence on the part of others. Being wishy-washy or inconsistent in your viewpoints inhibits credibility. The electorates in most countries throughout the world rate their politicians as very low in credibility because most candidates appear to be inconsistent in their statements, changing perspectives depending on the audience (Cialdini, 1995). Credible people, on the other hand, can be trusted to be consistent and predictable. A passionate point of view, it is said, is worth 50 IQ points. That is because being clear about what you want reduces uncertainty, fosters clarity, and creates consistency that leads to trust on the part of team members. Articulating and reinforcing an unwavering and persistent point of view is much more effective than changing opinions or preferences depending on whether or not others agree with you. 3. Create positive energy. Stay optimistic and complimentary. Most teams do not perform effectively when there is a climate of criticism, cynicism, or negativity. Criticizing team members, past leaders, or others outside the team, or even being critical of the circumstances in which the team finds itself, is usually not an effective way to help a team perform well. Individuals and teams perform better when positive energy exists—optimism, compliments, celebrations of success, and recognition of progress. This does not mean being unrealistic or a “Pollyanna.” Instead, it means that when you are seen as a source of positive energy and enthusiasm, you have more credibility and influence among team members. People are more attracted to positive than negative forces for the same reason they are more likely to say “yes” to a request if they have said “yes” to previous requests (Cialdini, 1995). Team members are more likely to be agreeable and committed to your agenda if you, as the leader, are agreeable and optimistic. 4. Use commonality and reciprocity. If you express views in the team that are held in common with team members, they are more likely to agree with your later statements. If you want to foster team change, or move the team toward an outcome that appears to be risky or uncomfortable, begin by expressing views with which other team members agree. It can be as simple as “I know you all have very busy

schedules” or “We have a lot of diversity of opinion in our team on this issue.” These kinds of statements work because of the principle of reciprocity. Team members have a tendency to agree with you more if they have received something from you in advance, even if that is merely your agreement with their point of view. After you have expressed agreement with them, you can then lead them toward goals or targets that may stretch them or that may be uncomfortable or uncertain. Your credibility will have been established if your initial statements are seen as consistent with the values and perspectives of other team members. This is also a fundamental strategy in effective negotiations. 5. Manage agreement and disagreement. When team members initially agree with you, you are more effective if you use a one-sided argument. That is, present only one point of view and support it with evidence. When team members tend to disagree with you at the outset, use two-sided arguments. That is, first present both sides of the case and then show how your own point of view is superior to the contrary perspective. Keep in mind that when team members agree with you, the first statements you make tend to hold more weight and are remembered the longest. When they disagree with you, the last statements made tend to carry the most weight. 6. Encourage and coach. Providing encouragement to team members has been found to be among the most powerful predictors of effective team leadership. Encouragement means to help others develop courage—to tackle uncertainty, to achieve beyond their current performance, to disrupt the status quo. Encouraging team members not only involves compliments and supportive statements, it also involves coaching and assistance. Coaching means helping to show the way, providing information or advice, and assisting team members with task requirements. It does not mean that the team leader becomes controlling or takes over. It means that coaches help others perform well while not being actively involved themselves. Effective encouragement, then, is more than cheerleading. It involves giving both positively reinforcing comments and helpful advice or direction. 7. Share information. Credible team leaders are knowledgeable, mainly about the preferences BUILDING EFFECTIVE TEAMS AND TEAMWORK CHAPTER 9

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and talents that reside in the team and about the task facing the team. Building credibility means coming to understand the perspectives of team members as well as a sense of their talents and resources. Coming to know your team members well is crucial for successful leadership. One way to do this is to use the principle of “frequent checking.” This merely involves asking questions and checking with team members regularly to determine levels of agreement, obstacles, dissatisfactions, needs, and interpersonal or team issues. Credibility is also built by having knowledge about the tasks and the external environment facing the team. This kind of knowledge can be achieved by playing the roles of “ambassador” and “scout” for the team, representing the team to outsiders, and obtaining information from external sources. Importantly, however, credibility grows as knowledge is shared. Being the source from which others can acquire needed information builds credibility and influence, so sharing is crucial. Of course, no leader can be an expert of all topics relevant to the team, but effective leaders continually increase and expand their storehouse of knowledge about the team and its environment. As stated by General Pagonis: Keeping [team members] abreast of your actions, as well as the rationale behind those actions, puts everybody on an equal information footing. I believe that information is power, but only if it is shared. . . . Very early on I had gotten in the habit of sneaking John Carr into these briefing sessions with CINC [General Schwarzkopf and others] by having Carr flip my slides in and out of the overhead projector. That way, he stayed as smart and as current about the CINC’s plans as I did. (pp. 88, 131)

at once” (p. 171). Katzenbach and Smith (1993), in an outstanding study of high-performing teams, reinforced this point of view: The best teams invest a tremendous amount of time and effort exploring, shaping, and agreeing on a [vision] that belongs to them collectively and individually. . . . With enough time and sincere attention, one or more broad, meaningful aspirations invariably arise that motivate teams to provide a fundamental reason for their extra effort. (p. 50) All teams have specific goals and objectives to achieve, but a vision is something different. It helps illuminate the core values and principles that will guide the team in the future. It gives a sense of direction. It provides a glimpse of possibilities, not just probabilities. It evokes deeper meaning and deeper commitment than task or goal statements. It is intended to help team members think differently about themselves and their future. It serves as a glue to bind the team together. It does all of this by way of three characteristics: 1. Left-brained and right-brained. An effective vision statement contains objective, targets, and intended accomplishments (left-brain components) as well as metaphors, colorful language, and emotion (right-brain components). It captures the head (left-brain) as well as the heart and imagination (right-brain) of team members. The most motivating vision statements—for example, Martin Luther King’s “I Have a Dream” speech, Winston Churchill’s “Never Give In” speech, John F. Kennedy’s “Ask Not What Your Country Can Do for You” speech, Henry V’s “Saint Crispin’s Day” speech—contain both left-brained elements (specific objectives) and right-brained elements (emotional imagery). Leaders articulate the vision using stories and metaphors as well as targets and goals. A vision without a story will often be ignored. 2. Interesting. Murray Davis (1971) pointed out that what people judge to be interesting and energizing has little to do with truth. Rather, what is interesting is information that contradicts weakly held assumptions and challenges the status quo. If a vision is consistent with what is already believed or known (e.g., “Our team will work together”), people tend to dismiss it as common sense. They don’t remem-

ARTICULATING A VISION
Once team members have confidence in the leader, it is then possible for that leader to articulate a motivating vision for the team. General Pagonis was adamant about the need for leaders of teams to articulate a vision: “Every successful venture grows out of a vision . . . It’s the vision that motivates, embraces, and sets limits, all 454

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ber it, and it doesn’t motivate them. If a vision is contradictory to strongly held assumptions, or if it blatantly challenges core values of team members (e.g., “Our team will be the most effective team in history on this task”), it is labeled ridiculous, silly, or blasphemous. A vision that helps create a new way to view the future, on the other hand, that mildly challenges the current state of things, is viewed as interesting and energizing. For example, John Kennedy’s statement, “We will land on the moon within 10 years” was just contradictory enough, just outlandish enough, just enough of a stretch to be interesting. Martin Luther King’s “I Have a Dream” speech exemplified the same dynamic. It not only made people think, it provided something new to think about. The vision of effective leaders stretches perspectives and contradicts status quo or easily attained targets. 3. Passion and principles. Effective visions are grounded in core values that team members believe in and about which they feel passionate. Even if a team’s task objective were to vanish, for example, members might still desire to affiliate with the team because of the core principles associated with its vision. Therefore, the principles in the vision must be personal. A vision focused on “increasing productivity” is less energizing than a vision based on “changing people’s lives.” “Achieving profitability” is less magnetic than “helping people flourish.” Furthermore, such principles are best phrased using superlatives. Notice the difference in how you feel about the following comparisons: “phenomenal performance” versus “successful”; “passionately involved” versus “committed”; “explosive growth” versus “good progress”; “awesome products” versus “useful items.” Visions based on the former phrases engender more enthusiasm and passion than those based on the latter phrases. Consider as an example of such language the vision statement of John Sculley, former chief executive officer (CEO) of Apple Computer Company: We are all part of a journey to create an extraordinary corporation. The things we intend to do in the years ahead have never been done before. . . . One person, one computer is still our dream. . . . We have a passion for changing

the world. We want to make personal computers a way of life in work, education, and the home. Apple people are paradigm shifters. . . . We want to be the catalyst for discovering new ways for people to do things. . . . Apple’s way starts with a passion to create awesome products with a lot of distinctive value built in. . . . We have chosen directions for Apple that will lead us to wonderful ideas we haven’t as yet dreamed. Of course, a vision without benchmarks for achievement may be seen as puffery or pie-in-the-sky thinking. That is why you need to articulate goals associated with the vision as well as the vision itself. All high-performing teams have clear goals that are known and shared by all team members. Every person on the team can give a similar answer to the question: What are we trying to achieve? Leaders who clearly articulate the desired outcomes for the team are more likely to have their vision adopted, especially if the desired outcomes are “SMART” goals—Specific, Measurable, A ligned with team culture, R ealistic but stretching, and T ime-bound. SMART goals are by far the most motivating and energizing kinds of goals. Consider the difference between goal statements such as “Do your best” or “We want to be the best in our industry,” compared to a goal statement that is SMART: “We will achieve a 5 percent improvement in the on-time delivery of our products by the end of the quarter.” The latter provides a more motivating goal in that it is specific, measurable, aligned with key outcomes, realistic, and timebound. It gives people something they can easily understand and shoot for. It is important to keep in mind, however, that articulating motivating goals, on the one hand, and identifying specific ways to achieve them, on the other hand, are different. The former specifies the target. The latter specifies the methods for achieving the target. The former is crucial to successful team leadership. The latter is often lethal. Pagonis’s team illustrates this well: I never tell a subordinate how to carry out a specific goal. Dictating terms to a subordinate undermines innovation, decreases the subordinate’s willingness to take responsibility for his or her actions, increases the potential for suboptimization of resources, and increases the chances that the command will be dysfunctional if circumstances change dramatically. Our first month in the theater only underscored 455

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my sense that out [team] would have to be incredibly elastic. (Pagonis, 1993: 119) In summary, being an effective leader of a team requires two key skills: (1) developing credibility among team members and (2) articulating a motivating vision accompanied by SMART goals. Whereas these are obviously not the only skills that effective team leaders possess, without these two core competencies, it is unlikely that the teams you lead will be successful.

effectiveness of the two key skills mentioned above— building credibility and articulating a vision. The data from thousands of managers worldwide supports the effectiveness of these two key skills for team leaders, regardless of national differences (see Trompenaars & Hampton-Turner, 1998). You may need to be sensitive to the potential need to modify your behaviors based on the composition of your team, but team composition will not have as strong an influence on team effectiveness as the leadership skills you display. (For one review of team composition influences, see Guzzo & Dickson, 1996.)

INTERNATIONAL CAVEATS
Individuals in different cultures exhibit differences in values and orientations (Hampden-Turner and Trompenaars, 1998, 2000). Diagnosing, understanding, and capitalizing on individual differences is a crucial skill of competent managers. The seven value orientations identified by Trompenaars provide a useful tool for identifying those individual differences. That is, you can understand differences among people by assessing them on the extent to which they emphasize one value orientation over its opposite: universalism versus particularism, individualism versus communitarianism, neutrality versus affectivity, specificity versus diffuseness, achievement versus ascription, internal versus external control, and past, present, or future time orientation. Individual differences may require that some modification be made in these team leadership behaviors. For example, if you are leading a team with members from cultures that tend to have a collectivist as opposed to an individualist orientation (e.g., Mexico, Japan, France, Philippines), team members will expect to be involved in the creation and articulation of the vision. They will be less comfortable with the vision coming from a single leader, regardless of his or her credibility and influence. Consequently, the vision and its accompanying goals should be designed with active participation of team members. Similarly, team members from countries where a neutral as opposed to an affective culture predominates (e.g., Korea, China, Japan, New Zealand) may be less energized by language filled with superlatives and passion. Their orientation toward task accomplishment and factual data may mute their responses to emotional language. Consequently, being sensitive to the wording of your vision statement will help make it more motivating. The differences in cultural values among different nationalities are not so great as to negate the overall 456 CHAPTER 9 BUILDING EFFECTIVE TEAMS AND TEAMWORK

Team Membership
Most of the time, most of us will not serve as the leader of the teams in which we participate. Whereas you will want to prepare for the leadership roles you will play in the future, the vast majority of the time you will be an active member of a team, working for the common good of the group, rather than the person in charge. You will be valuable to your team because of the contributions you make in nonleadership roles. Fortunately, as a member of a team you can be at least as effective as you can as the team’s leader. One of the most amazing statements made by General Pagonis as he reviewed the outcomes of Desert Storm related to the performance of his team, even when he was not the active leader: I meet with skepticism, even disbelief, when I tell people that I didn’t issue a single order during the ground war. This is only slightly a stretch of the truth. Yes, people sought and got guidance. But the people in my command knew exactly what they were supposed to do in almost every conceivable circumstance. They had been trained and encouraged to think on their feet. I felt they could even deal with the inconceivable. (Pagonis, 1993: 148) Team members were not only guided by an overarching goal and a clear understanding of what they were to accomplish, but they had become an extraordinarily high-performing team because of the roles played by team members. Pagonis described it this way: “Truth be told, we spent less of our time as logisticians, and more of our time as managers, fixers, firefighters, father confessors, and cheerleaders. There was simply nobody else around to play those roles” (p. 87). In this section, we point out two main skills associated with team membership—playing advantageous

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roles and providing helpful feedback to others. Once again, these skills are not complicated, but they have been found to be highly effective in helping team members foster team success (see Parker, 1996).

ADVANTAGEOUS ROLES
Work teams face two main challenges: accomplishing the task that has been assigned and building unity and collaboration among the team members. As a member of a team, you can enhance or inhibit those two challenges at least as much as you can as the team leader. All of us have experienced teams that just seemed to click, that were able to get results quickly and effectively, and were fun to be in. Those dynamics do not happen by chance but depend on certain key roles played by team members. A great deal of research has been done on the power of group pressure and the influence of team members on one another. The classic Solomon Asch experiments (1951) were among the first to highlight the influence of team members on one another. The Asch experiments showed, for example, that when other team members verbalized agreement with a

statement that was obviously false (e.g., “The federal government controls the stock market”), the person being observed also tended to verbalize agreement with the obviously false statement. Team members’ behavior dramatically influenced the behaviors of one another. Most teams do not operate on the basis of blatant pressure tactics, of course, but team performance can be markedly enhanced by having team members play certain roles that facilitate task accomplishment and group cohesion. Two main types of roles exist that enhance team performance: task-facilitating roles and relationshipbuilding roles (Schein, 1982). It is difficult for team members to emphasize both types of roles equally, and most people tend to contribute in one area more than the other; that is, some team members tend to be more task focused whereas others tend to be more relationship focused. Task-facilitating roles are those that help the team accomplish its outcomes or objectives. Table 2 identifies the most common task-facilitating roles. They include: ❏

Direction giving. Identifying ways to proceed or alternatives to pursue and clarifying goals and objectives.

Table 2
ROLE

Task-Facilitating Roles
EXAMPLES “This is the way we were instructed to approach our task.” “Everyone write down your ideas, then share them.” “What did you mean by that?” “Does anyone else have more information about this?” “Here are some relevant data.” “I want to share some information that may be helpful.” “Building on your idea, here is an additional alternative.” “An example of what you just said is . . . ” “We have only 10 minutes left, so we need to move more quickly.” “We can’t quit now. We’re close to finalizing our proposal.” “You maintain accountability for the first recommendation, and I’ll handle the second.” “Here are some criteria we can use to judge our success.” “It seems as if the energy level in the team is beginning to decline.” “I’ve noticed that the females are participating less than the males in our team.” “Let’s see if this is really practical.” “Do you think this is workable given our resources?” “We’re beginning to wander in our comments; let’s stay on task.” “Since we agreed not to interrupt one another, I suggest we stick to our pact.” “It seems to me that these are the conclusions we have reached.” “In summary, you have made three points . . . ”

Direction giving Information seeking Information giving Elaborating Urging Monitoring Process analyzing Reality testing Enforcing Summarizing

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❏ ❏









Information seeking. Asking questions, analyzing knowledge gaps, requesting opinions, beliefs, and perspectives. Information giving. Providing data, offering facts and judgments, and highlighting conclusions. Elaborating. Building on the ideas expressed by others; providing examples and illustrations. Urging. Imploring team members to stay on task and to achieve team goals. Monitoring. Checking on progress, developing measures of success, and helping to maintain accountability for results. Process analyzing. Analyzing processes and procedures used by the team in order to improve efficiency and timeliness. Reality testing. Exploring whether ideas presented are practical or workable; grounding comments in reality. Enforcing. Helping to reinforce team rules, reinforcing standards, and maintaining agreedupon procedures. Summarizing. Combining ideas and summing up points made in the team; helping members understand the conclusions that have been reached.

cohesion and collaboration. An overwhelming amount of evidence exists to suggest that high-performing teams are cohesive, interdependent, and have positive affect among team members (Cohen & Bailey, 1997; Druskat & Wolff, 1999; Gully, Divine, & Whitney, 1995; Mullen & Copper, 1994; Parker, 1996). Relationship-building roles are those that emphasize the interpersonal aspects of the team. They focus on assisting team members to feel good about one another, enjoy the team’s work, and maintain a tension-free climate. These roles are especially important when disagreement is prevalent, tension is high, or team members are not contributing to the team’s performance. Table 3 identifies the most common relationship-building roles: ❏



❏ ❏

❏ ❏

Performing task-facilitating roles helps the team work more efficiently and effectively in achieving its objectives. Without having at least one team member displaying task-facilitating behaviors, teams tend to take longer to achieve their objectives and have difficulty staying focused. In your role as a team member, you will find it useful to sometimes play the role of task facilitator. Sometimes, keeping the team “on task” is the most important thing you can do. These roles are especially important when progress toward goal accomplishment is slow, when the team is being deflected from its task, when time pressures exist, when the assignment is complex or ambiguous and it is not clear how to proceed, or when no one else is helping the team move toward task accomplishment. One does not have to be a taskmaster to be an effective facilitator of outcomes. In fact, just recognizing that the team is in need of task facilitation is a big part of being an effective team member. In most effective teams, you will find several members performing these task facilitation roles. In addition to task accomplishment, high-performing teams also have a certain amount of interpersonal 458 CHAPTER 9 BUILDING EFFECTIVE TEAMS AND TEAMWORK





Supporting. Praising the ideas of others, showing friendliness, and pointing out others’ contributions. Harmonizing. Mediating differences between others, and finding a common ground in disputes and conflicting points of view. Tension relieving. Using jokes and humor to reduce tension and put others at ease. Confronting. Challenging unproductive or disruptive behaviors; helping to ensure proper behavior in the team. Energizing. Motivating others toward greater effort; exuding enthusiasm. Developing. Assisting others to learn, grow, and achieve; orienting and coaching members of the team. Consensus building. Helping build solidarity among team members, encouraging agreement, and helping interactions to be smooth. Empathizing. Reflecting group feelings and expressing empathy and support for team members.

All of us have been on a team, or in a class, when a fellow participant was funny, actively engaging with others, or especially supportive of others on the team or in the class. The chemistry of the group just seems to improve under such conditions. It becomes easier to work and more enjoyable to be a team member. A certain amount of magnetism and positive energy exists. People tend to take more responsibility, collaborate more readily, and try harder to find consensual outcomes. These are the results that are intended by performing relationshipbuilding roles. They are not designed to deflect attention away from the task, but they assist the team in working more effectively together.

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Table 3
ROLE Supporting Harmonizing

Relationship-Building Roles
EXAMPLES “Your ideas are terrific!” “I really appreciate your honesty and openness. It’s refreshing.” “I hear the two of you saying essentially the same thing.” “The disagreements being expressed don’t seem to be all that crucial.” “Hey folks, let’s lighten up!” “This reminds me of the new conference table we bought. It sleeps 12.” “How does your comment address the topic we are discussing?” “You are not taking as much responsibility as the other team members.” “Your insights are really motivating!” “This team is the most enjoyable group I’ve been in for a long time.” “How can I help you?” “Let me give you some assistance with that.” “It seems like we’re all saying pretty much the same thing.” “Can we all at least agree on point number 1, even if we disagree on the rest?” “I know how you feel.” “This must be a very sensitive topic for you given your personal experience.”

Tension relieving Confronting Energizing Developing Consensus building Empathizing

Without both task-facilitating and relationshipbuilding roles, teams struggle to perform effectively. Some members must ensure that the team accomplishes its tasks, while others must ensure that members remain bonded together interpersonally. These are usually not the same individuals, and at certain points in time, different roles may become more dominant than others. The key is to have a balance between task-oriented roles and relationship-building roles displayed in the team. The downfall of many teams is that they become unidimensional—for example, they emphasize task accomplishment exclusively—and do not give equal attention to both types of roles. Of course, each role can also have a downside if performed ineffectively or in inappropriate circumstances. For example, elaborating may be disruptive if the team is trying to reach a quick decision; tension relieving may be annoying if the team is trying to be serious; enforcing may create resistance when the team is already experiencing high levels of pressure; consensus building may mask real differences of opinion and tension among team members. However, it is even more likely that team members will display other unproductive roles rather than inappropriately play task or relationship roles. Unproductive roles inhibit the team or its members from achieving what they could have achieved, and they destroy morale and cohesion. They are called blocking roles. We point out a few of them here because, as you analyze the teams to which you

belong, you may recognize these roles being performed and be able to confront them. Among the common blocking roles are: ❏ ❏ ❏











Dominating. Excessive talking, interrupting, or cutting others off. Overanalyzing. Splitting hairs and examining every detail excessively. Stalling. Not allowing the group to reach a decision or finalize a task by sidetracking the discussion, being unwilling to agree, repeating old arguments, and so on. Remaining passive. Not being willing to engage in the team’s task; staying on the fringe or refusing to interact with other team members; expecting others to do the team’s work. Overgeneralizing. Blowing something out of proportion and drawing unfounded conclusions. Faultfinding. Being unwilling to see the merits of others’ ideas or criticizing others excessively. Premature decision making. Making decisions before goals are stated, information is shared, alternatives are discussed, or problems are defined. Presenting opinions as facts. Failing to examine the legitimacy of proposals and labeling personal opinions as truth. 459

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Rejecting. Rejecting ideas based on the person who stated them rather than on their merits. ❏ Pulling rank. Using status, expertise, or title to get ideas accepted rather than discussing and examining their value. ❏ Resisting. Blocking all attempts to change, to improve, or to make progress; being disagreeable and negative about virtually all suggestions from other team members. ❏ Deflecting. Not staying focused on the topic of the team’s discussion; changing the subject of discussion or making comments that deflect attention away from the main points. Each of these blocking roles has the potential to inhibit a team from efficiently and effectively accomplishing its task by crushing morale, destroying consensus, creating conflict, hampering progress, and making ill-informed decisions. Effective team members recognize when blocking roles are displayed, confront and isolate dysfunctional members, and provide feedback to those who are inhibiting effective team performance. Knowing the most effective ways in which that feedback can be delivered is the second key skill of team members.







PROVIDING FEEDBACK
It is not easy to provide feedback to someone who is behaving inappropriately or disruptively. Whereas it is much easier to provide positive feedback or give compliments, helping others correct their negative behavior or pointing out the dysfunctions of blocking roles is difficult. Most of us are afraid of offending others, of making the problem worse, or of creating conflict that may destroy team unity. While no set of behaviors is guaranteed to be effective in every situation or with every individual, certain principles for providing feedback—usually negative feedback—have been found to be especially effective (Dew, 1998; Hayes, 1997; Yeatts & Hyten, 1998). ❏



Focus feedback on behavior rather than persons. Individuals can control and change their behavior. They cannot change their personalities or physical characteristics. For example, “Your comments are not on the topic” is more effective than “You are completely naive.” ❏ Focus feedback on observations rather than inferences and on descriptions rather than judgments. Facts and objective evidence are more trustworthy and acceptable than opin460 CHAPTER 9 BUILDING EFFECTIVE TEAMS AND TEAMWORK



ions and conjectures. For example, “The data do not support your point” is more effective than “You just don’t get it, do you?” Focus feedback on behavior related to a specific situation, preferably to the “here and now,” rather than on abstract or past behavior. It will merely frustrate people if they cannot pinpoint a specific incident or behavior to which you are referring. Similarly, people cannot change something that has already happened and is “water under the bridge.” For example, “You have yet to agree with anyone’s comments” is more effective than “You have always been a problem in this team.” Focus feedback on sharing ideas and information rather than giving advice. Explore alternatives together. Unless requested, avoid giving direct instruction demands. Instead, help recipients identify changes and improvements themselves. For example, “How do you suggest we can break this logjam and move forward?” is more effective than “This is what we must do now.” Focus feedback on the amount of information that the recipient can use, rather than on the amount you might like to give. Information overload causes people to stop listening. Not enough information leads to frustration and misunderstanding. For example, “You seem to have reached a conclusion before all the facts have been presented” is more effective than “Here are some data you should consider, and here are some more, and here are some more, and here are some more.” Focus feedback on the value it may have to the receiver, not on the emotional release it provides for you. Feedback should be for the good of the recipient, not merely for you to let off steam. For example, “I must say that your excessive talking is very troublesome to me and not helpful to the group” is more effective than “You are being a jerk and are a big cause of our team’s difficulty in making any progress.” Focus feedback on time and place so that personal data can be shared at appropriate times. The more specific feedback is, or the more it can be anchored in a specific context, the more helpful it can be. For example, “During a break I would like to chat with you about something” is more effective than “You think your title gives you the right to force the rest of us to agree with you, but it’s just making us angry.”

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INTERNATIONAL CAVEATS
These team member skills may require some modification in different international settings or with teams composed of international members (Trompenaars & Hampton-Turner, 1998). Whereas the team member skills previously discussed have been found to be effective in a global context, it is naive to expect that everyone will react the same way to team member roles. For example, in cultures that emphasize affectivity (e.g., Iran, Spain, France, Italy, Mexico), personal confrontations and emotional displays are more acceptable than in cultures that are more neutral (e.g., Korea, China, Singapore, Japan), where personal references are more offensive. Humor and displaying enthusiastic behavior are also more acceptable in affective cultures than neutral cultures. Similarly, status differences are likely to play a more dominant role in ascription-oriented cultures (e.g., Czech Republic, Egypt, Spain, Korea,) than in achievement-oriented cultures (e.g., United States, Norway, Canada, Australia, United Kingdom), in which knowledge and skills tend to be more important. Appealing to data and facts in the latter cultures will carry more weight than in the former cultures. Some misunderstanding may also arise, for example, in cultures emphasizing different time frames. Whereas some cultures emphasize just-in-time, short-term time frames (e.g., United States), others emphasize long-term, future time frames (e.g., Japan). The story is told of the Japanese proposal to purchase Yosemite National Park in California. The first thing the Japanese submitted was a 250-year business plan. The reaction of the California authorities was, “Wow, that’s 1,000 quarterly reports.” The urgency to move a team forward toward task accomplishment, in other words, may be seen differently by different cultural groups. Some cultures (e.g., Japan) are more comfortable spending substantial amounts of time on relationship-building activities before moving toward task accomplishment.

a more mature stage of development—when the team has become a highly effective, smoothly functioning unit. The skill we want you to develop is to be able to diagnose the stage of your team’s development so that you will know what kinds of behaviors will most effectively enhance your team’s performance. Evidence of predictable patterns of team development has been available since the early part of this century (Dewey, 1933; Freud, 1921). In fact, despite the variety in composition, purpose, and longevity of the teams investigated in a large array of studies, the stages of group and team development have been strikingly similar. (See reviews of this literature in Cameron & Whetten, 1981; Cameron & Whetten, 1984; and Quinn & Cameron, 1983). The research shows that teams tend to develop through four separate, sequential stages. These stages were first labeled by Tuckman (1965) as forming, storming, norming, and performing. Because of their rhyme and parsimony, these labels are still widely used today. (Tuckman’s second and third stages are reversed here based on the work of Greiner, 1998, and Cameron & Whetten, 1981). Table 4 summarizes the four main stages of team development. In order for teams to be effective and for team members to benefit most from team membership, teams must progress through the first three stages of development to achieve stage 4. In each separate stage, unique challenges and issues predominate, and it is by successfully diagnosing and managing these issues and challenges that a team matures and becomes more effective. For each of the four stages, we first identify major team member issues and questions, then we identify the management responses that help the team effectively transcend that stage of development.

THE FORMING STAGE
When team members first come together, they are much like an audience at the outset of a concert. They are not a team but an aggregation of individuals sharing a common setting. Something must happen for them to feel that they are a cohesive unit. When you meet with a group of people for the first time, for example, chances are that you do not feel integrated with the group right away. Several questions are probably on your mind, such as: ❏

Team Development
Regardless of whether you play the role of team leader or team member, in order to function effectively in a team it is important that you understand that all teams progress through stages of development. These stages cause the dynamics within the team to change, the relationships among team members to shift, and effective leader behaviors to be modified. In this section, we outline the four major stages that teams pass through from early stages of development—when a team is still struggling to become a coherent entity—to

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Table 4
STAGE Forming Norming

Four Stages of Team Development
EXPLANATION The team is faced with the need to become acquainted with its members, its purpose, and its boundaries. Relationships must be formed and trust established. Clarity of direction is needed from team leaders. The team is faced with creating cohesion and unity, differentiating roles, identifying expectations for members, and enhancing commitment. Providing supportive feedback and fostering commitment to a vision are needed from team leaders. The team is faced with disagreements, counterdependence, and the need to manage conflict. Challenges include violations of team norms and expectations and overcoming groupthink. Focusing on process improvement, recognizing team achievement, and fostering win–win relationships are needed from team leaders. The team is faced with the need for continuous improvement, innovation, speed, and capitalizing on core competencies. Sponsoring team members’ new ideas, orchestrating their implementation, and fostering extraordinary performance are needed from the team leaders.

Storming

Performing

The questions uppermost in the minds of participants in a new team have to do with establishing a sense of security and direction, getting oriented, and becoming comfortable with the new situation. Sometimes, new team members can articulate these questions, while at other times they are little more than general feelings of discomfort or disconnectedness. Uncertainty and ambiguity tend to predominate as individuals seek some type of understanding and structure. Because there is no shared history with the team, there is no unity among members. Thus, the typical interpersonal relationships that predominate in this stage are: ❏ ❏

Silence Self-consciousness ❏ Dependence ❏ Superficiality Even though some individuals may enter a team situation with great enthusiasm and anticipation, they are usually hesitant to demonstrate their emotions to others until they begin to feel at ease. Moreover, without knowing the rules and boundaries, it feels risky to speak out or to even ask questions. Seldom are new members willing to actively query a leader when a team first meets together, even though uncertainty prevails. When a leader asks questions of team members, rarely does someone jump at the chance to give an answer. When answers are given, they are likely to be brief. Little interaction occurs among team members themselves, most communication is targeted at the team leader or person in charge, and each individual is generally thinking more of himself or herself than of

the team. Interactions tend to be formal and guarded. Congruent behaviors are masked in the interest of selfprotection. Individuals cannot begin to feel like a team until they become familiar with the rules and boundaries of their setting. They don’t know whom to trust, who will take initiative, what constitutes normal behavior, or what kinds of interactions are appropriate. They are not yet a real team but only a collection of individuals. Therefore, the task of the team in this stage is less focused on producing an output than on developing the team itself. Helping team members become comfortable with one another takes precedence over task accomplishment. A team faces the following kinds of task issues in its first stage of development: ❏

Orienting members and getting questions answered ❏ Establishing trust ❏ Establishing relationships with the leader(s) ❏ Establishing clarity of purpose, norms, procedures, and expectations This stage may be brief, but it is not a time to rely on free and open discussion and consensus decision making to accomplish an outcome. Direction, clarity, and structure are needed instead. The first task is to ensure that all team members know one another and that their questions are answered. Because relatively little participation may occur during this stage, the temptation may be to rush ahead or to short-circuit introductions and instructions. However, teams tend to flounder later if the challenges of this stage are not adequately managed.

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In the case of the Persian Gulf logistics team, the first critical task was to make certain that objectives, rules and regulations, time frames, and resources were clearly laid out. Each member of the team had to become comfortable with his or her team membership: The team got down to work with a redoubled sense of urgency. They were soon fully familiar with the plan that had been roughed out. . . . We quickly got to a joint understanding of what I took to be our role in the theater. . . . Our session . . . was very successful, mainly because from the outset we had a well-defined structure for invention. We worked toward several clearly expressed goals, and there was an imposed time limit to keep us on track. And finally, our various experiences were complementary. We needed each other and we knew it. (Pagonis, 1993: 82–83)

❏ ❏

How can I show my support to others? How can I fit in?

During the norming stage, team members become contented with team membership and begin to value the team’s goals more than their own personal goals. Individual needs are met through the team’s accomplishments. The team, rather than the leader or a single person, takes responsibility for solving problems, confronting and correcting mistakes, and ensuring success. Agreement and a willingness to go along characterize the climate of the team. Individuals experience feelings of loyalty to the team, and the interpersonal relationships that most characterize team members include: ❏ ❏

Cooperativeness Conformity to standards and expectations ❏ Heightened interpersonal attraction ❏ Ignoring disagreements This norming stage is a time when effective teams encourage relationship-building roles. Participation by all team members is encouraged, and the team takes responsibility for ensuring that it: ❏

THE NORMING STAGE
Once team members have become oriented, achieved clarity about the team’s goals, and accepted their place in the team, the main challenge of the team is to create a cohesive unit or a “sense of team.” Norms, rules, and expectations are clarified in the first stage, but an underlying team culture and informal relationships among members must also be developed. The need to move the team from a group of individuals sharing a common goal to a highly cohesive unit is the motivation that leads the team to a new stage of development—the norming stage. The more team members interact with one another, the more they develop common behaviors and perspectives. They experience a certain amount of pressure to conform to the expectations of other team members, so the team begins to develop a character and culture of its own. We all have experienced strong peer pressure, the clearest example of the dynamics in this stage of team development. A new cohesive team culture affects the amount of work done by the team, its style of communicating, approaches to problem solving, and even team member dress. The major focus of team members, in other words, shifts from overcoming uncertainty in the forming stage to developing the norms of a unified group. Typical questions in team members’ minds during this stage include: ❏

Maintains unity and cohesion ❏ Facilitates participation and empowerment ❏ Shows support to team members ❏ Provides feedback on team and team member performance A major problem may arise in this stage of development, however, especially if the team refuses to move on. That problem is an increasing inability to engender diversity and varied perspectives in the team. Whereas team members may feel extremely satisfied with their tightly bonded unit, the team risks a danger of developing groupthink (Janis, 1972). Groupthink occurs when the cohesiveness and inertia developed in a team drives out good decision making and problem solving. The preservation of the team takes precedence over accurate decisions or high-quality task accomplishment. Not enough differentiation and challenge to the team’s mind-set occurs. Irv Janis (1972) conducted research in which he chronicled several high-performing teams that in one instance performed in a stellar fashion, but performed disastrously in another instance. His classic example was the cabinet of President John F. Kennedy. This team worked through what is often considered one of the best sets of decisions ever made in handling the BUILDING EFFECTIVE TEAMS AND TEAMWORK CHAPTER 9

What are the norms and values of the team? ❏ How can I best get along with everyone else?

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Cuban Missile Crisis, in which the former Soviet Union was inhibited from placing warhead missiles in Cuba by means of a high-stakes confrontation by Kennedy and his cabinet. But this was also the same team that earlier had made the disastrous decisions related to the Bay of Pigs fiasco, in which a planned overthrow of Fidel Castro’s government in Cuba became a logistical nightmare, a confluence of indecision, and an embarrassing defeat for the same formerly high-functioning team. What was the difference? Why did the same team do so well in one circumstance and so poorly in another? Janis’s answer is groupthink. Groupthink typically occurs when the following attributes develop in teams that are stuck in the norming stage: ❏















Illusion of invulnerability. Members feel assured that the team’s past success will continue. (“Because of our track record, we cannot fail.”) Shared stereotypes. Members dismiss disconfirming information by discrediting its source. (“These people just don’t understand these things.”) Rationalization. Members rationalize away threats to an emerging consensus. (“This is the reason they don’t agree with us.”) Illusion of morality. Members believe that they, as moral individuals, are not likely to make wrong decisions. (“This team would never knowingly make a bad decision or do anything immoral.”) Self-censorship. Members keep silent about misgivings and try to minimize doubts. (“I must be wrong if others think that way.”) Direct pressure. Sanctions are imposed on members who explore deviant viewpoints. (“If you don’t agree, why don’t you leave the team?”) Mind guarding. Members protect the team from being exposed to disturbing ideas. (“Don’t listen to them. We need to keep the rabble-rousers at bay.”) Illusion of unanimity. Members conclude that the team must have reached a consensus because the most vocal members are in agreement. (“If Dave and Melissa agree, there must be a consensus.”)

ing to make a serious judgment error, a leader convenes a meeting of his or her team. In the process of discussing an issue, the leader expresses a preference for one option. Other team members, wanting to appear supportive, present arguments justifying the decision. One or two members tentatively suggest alternatives, but they are strongly overruled by the majority. The decision is carried out with even greater conviction than normal because everyone is in agreement, but the consequences are disastrous. How did this happen? Although the leader brought the team together to avoid making a bad decision, the presence of groupthink actually made a bad decision more likely. Without the social support provided by the team, the leader may have been more cautious in implementing a personally preferred but uncertain decision. To manage this tendency to develop groupthink, the team must move through the norming stage into the storming stage. The team must develop attributes that will foster diversity, heterogeneity, and even conflict in the team’s processes. In particular, Janis makes the following suggestions for addressing groupthink: ❏











Critical evaluators. At least one team member should be assigned to perform the role of critic or evaluator of the team’s decisions. Open discussion. The team leader should not express an opinion at the outset of the team meeting but should encourage open discussion of differing perspectives by team members. Subgroups. Multiple subgroups in the team may be formed to develop independent proposals. Outside experts. Invite outside experts to listen to the rationale for the team’s decision and critique it. Devil’s advocate. Assign at least one team member to play devil’s advocate during the discussion if it seems that too much homogeneity exists in the team’s discussion. Second-chance meetings. Sleep on the team’s decision and revisit it afresh the next day. The expression of team members’ second thoughts should be encouraged.

THE STORMING STAGE
As implied above, the comfort that team members develop in the norming stage can lead to an excessive amount of agreement and homogeneity. It also can lead, however, to the opposite phenomenon. That is, once team members begin to feel comfortable with the

The problem with groupthink is that it leads teams to commit more errors than normal. Consider the following commonly observed scenario. Not want464 CHAPTER 9 BUILDING EFFECTIVE TEAMS AND TEAMWORK

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team, they often begin to explore different roles. Some may tend toward task facilitation, while others may tend toward relationship building. This differentiation of team members’ roles invariably leads the team into a stage of potential conflict and counterdependence— a storming stage. Playing different roles causes team members to develop different perspectives and to develop ideas that challenge the leadership and direction of the team. Virtually every effective team goes through a stage in which team members question the legitimacy of the team’s direction, the leader, the roles of other team members, the opinions or decisions of others, and the task objectives. Up to now, the team was largely characterized by harmony and consensus. Individual differences were suppressed in order to create a sense of team. However, such a condition will not last forever without team members becoming uncomfortable about losing their individual identity, subjugating their feelings, or stifling differing perspectives. The team’s long-term success, therefore, will depend on how well it manages the storming stage of development. Typical questions that arise in team members’ minds during this stage are: ❏ ❏

some team members than others, and to align themselves with certain points of view. This leads to: ❏

Coalitions or cliques being formed ❏ Competition among team members ❏ Disagreement with the leader ❏ Challenging others’ points of view During Desert Storm, a relatively rigid military command hierarchy—along with the urgency of the mission to be performed—inhibited large deviations from established norms and rules, but small aberrations began to emerge as Pagonis’s team developed. Logistics team members painted personal logos on some tanks and trucks, insider code names were given to people and locations as a bit of sarcasm, and challenges to topbrass mandates became more common in briefing rooms. This testing of norms and boundaries is sometimes merely an expression of a need for individuality, whereas in other instances it is a product of strong feelings that the team can be improved. The main task issues to be addressed by the team in this stage include: ❏

How will we handle dissension? How can we make decisions amidst disagreement? ❏ How will we communicate negative information? ❏ Do I want to maintain my membership in the team? An old Middle Eastern proverb states: “All sunshine makes a desert.” Similarly, team development implies that some struggles must occur, some discomfort must be experienced, and some obstacles must be overcome for the team to prosper. The team must learn to deal with adversity—especially that produced by its own members. Tendencies toward groupthink must be attacked head on. If team members are more interested in keeping peace than in solving problems and accomplishing tasks, the team will never become effective. No one wants to remain in a team that will not allow for individuality and uniqueness and that wants to maintain harmony more than it wants to accomplish its goals. Consequently, harmony is sometimes sacrificed as the team attacks problems and accomplishes objectives. Of course, team members do not cease to care about one another, and they remain committed to the team and its success. But they do begin to take sides on issues, to find that they are more compatible with

Managing conflict ❏ Legitimizing productive expressions of individuality ❏ Turning counterdependence into interdependence ❏ Fostering consensus-building processes Conflict, coalition formation, and counterdependence create conditions that may lead to the norms and values of the team being questioned. Rather than being stifled or resisted, however, effective teams encourage members to turn those challenges into constructive suggestions for improvement. It is important for team members to feel that they can legitimately express their personal uniqueness and idiosyncrasies, so long as they are not destructive to the overall team. It is clear from research on teams that they are more effective if membership is heterogeneous than if all team members act, believe, and see things the same way (Campion, Medsker, & Higgs, 1993; Cox, 1994; Harrison et al., 2002). Diversity is productive. Maintaining flexibility in the team implies that tolerance for individuality is acceptable and that changes and improvements are promoted. General Pagonis’s philosophy about the way to manage differences was to encourage their expression: The key is to be open to different experiences and perspectives. If you can’t tolerate different kinds of people, you’re not likely to learn from BUILDING EFFECTIVE TEAMS AND TEAMWORK CHAPTER 9

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different kinds of perspectives. Effective leaders encourage contrary opinions, an important source of vitality. This is especially true in the military where good ideas come in an incredible variety of packages. (Pagonis, 1993: 24) In this stage of development, tension arises between forces pushing the team toward cohesion and forces pushing it toward differentiation. At the same time strong bonds of team unity have been fostered, individuals begin differentiating themselves from one another and adopting unique roles in the team. They become complementary. This complementarity of roles may actually foster team cohesion and productivity rather than conflict, however, if the team: ❏

Pagonis’s logistics team illustrates the value of the first three suggestions above—identifying an external enemy, team-level recognition, and vision. In the presence of the enemy, our strength was flexibility, both as individuals and as a group. Organizations must be flexible enough to adjust and conform when their environments change. But the flexibility can degenerate into chaos in the absence of wellestablished goals. . . . Once everyone in the organization understands the goals of the organization, then each person sets out several objectives by which to attain those goals within his or her own sphere of activity. . . . When it works, cooperation and collegiality are enhanced, and in-fighting and suboptimization are minimized. (Pagonis, 1993: 83) The fourth suggestion above is illustrated well by a process used effectively by Xerox Corporation to address stiff competition from external competitors, mainly Canon. Figure 2 illustrates a process implemented by Xerox wherein students were turned into teachers in order to ensure that a common vision and

Identifies an external enemy (rather than one another) as a target for competition. ❏ Reinforces team commitment with recognition of team-level performance. ❏ Maintains visibility of vision and superordinate goals. ❏ Turns students into teachers by having team members teach the group’s values and vision to others. Figure 2 The Xerox Dissemination Process Family Group 1 Learn

Apply

Teach

Measure

Family Group 2

Learn

Apply

Teach

Measure

Family Group 3

Learn

Apply

Teach

Measure

Each person is exposed to information four times: • When they get trained • When they apply it • When they teach it • When they measure someone else's application

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common processes were implemented throughout the company. To ensure that all units and all managers were working in harmony, the company divided itself into hierarchical family teams. A four-step process was then implemented: 1. Learn. Core principles, vision, and values were taught and discussed. 2. Apply. Action plans were formed and an improvement agenda was implemented. 3. Teach. The principles and successful experiences were taught to the next lower family team. 4. Inspect. The performance and action plans of this lower family team were measured and monitored. Teams were exposed to the desired information four times: when they learned it, when they applied it, when they taught it, and when they inspected it. More importantly, because team members were engaged in teaching others, their commitment to the team, even in light of differentiated roles, was enhanced.

successes in organizations reported in the best practice literature only if they reach the performing stage of development. The team in the performing stage is not, of course, free of challenges. The common issues that tend to dominate members of high-performing teams are: ❏

How can we continuously improve? ❏ How can we foster innovativeness and creativity? ❏ How can we build on our core competence? ❏ How can we maintain a high level of energy in the team? Team members’ questions in this stage change from being static to being dynamic. They shift in focus from building the team and accomplishing objectives to fostering change and improvement. Continuous improvement replaces accomplishment as a key objective. Up to this point, the team has been trying to manage and resolve issues that lead to three key outcomes: (1) accomplishing tasks or objectives, (2) coordinating and integrating team members’ roles, and (3) ensuring the personal well-being of all team members. It can now turn its attention to achieving a level of performance above the ordinary. The interpersonal relationships of team members are characterized by: ❏

THE PERFORMING STAGE
The performing stage of development represents highly effective and efficient team functioning. Because the team has worked through the issues embedded in each of the previous stages of development, it is able to work at a high level of performance. The team has overcome issues of skepticism, uncertainty, nonparticipativeness, dependence, and selfcenteredness typical of the first, or forming, stage of development. It has developed a clear vision, personal commitment to the team, and a high degree of loyalty and morale, and has overcome tendencies toward groupthink in the norming stage. It has fostered differentiation and variety and overcome tendencies toward counterdependence, conflict, polarization, and disharmony typical of the storming stage. It now has the potential to develop the attributes of a highperforming team. A listing of attributes of high-performance teams is provided in Table 5, based on research summarized in Cohen & Bailey (1997), Guzzo and Dickson (1996), Hackman (1990), Katzenbach and Smith (1993), Parker (1996), and Yeatts & Hyten (1998). These attributes are those that produce the benefits enumerated earlier in this chapter (e.g., productivity improvements, quality achievements, speed, and cost reductions). By and large, teams produce the dramatic

High mutual trust ❏ Unconditional commitment to the team ❏ Mutual training and development ❏ Entrepreneurship Team members in this stage exhibit a sense of mutual responsibility and concern for one another as they carry out their work. Their relationships are not limited merely to accomplishing a task together but also extend to ensuring that each team member is learning, developing, and improving. Coaching and assisting one another is common. In General Pagonis’s high-performing team, members were continuously teaching one another and helping the team and its individuals members become more competent. I arranged to take a day or two away from headquarters with a group of key people from the command [the team]. We use this brief respite from our everyday activities to take a long look at what our organization is doing. These sessions . . . gave us a chance to work as a group, in a focused way. . . . From Day One, I held large, open classes where we discussed BUILDING EFFECTIVE TEAMS AND TEAMWORK CHAPTER 9

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Table 5

Some Attributes of High-Performing Teams

❏ Performance outcomes High-performing teams do things. They produce something; they don’t just discuss it. Without accomplishment, teams dissolve and become ineffective over time. ❏ Specific, shared purpose and vision The more specific the purpose, the more commitment, trust, and coordination can occur. Individuals don’t work for themselves; they work for one another in pursuit of the shared purpose. The shared purpose can also be the same as a motivating vision of what the team should achieve. ❏ Mutual, internal accountability The sense of internal accountability is far greater than any accountability imposed by a boss or outsider. Selfevaluation and accountability characterize a high-performing team. ❏ Blurring of formal distinctions Team members do whatever is needed to contribute to the task, regardless of previous positions or titles. Team membership and team roles are more predominant than outside status. ❏ Coordinated, shared work roles Individuals always work in coordination with others on the team. The desired output is a single group product, not a set of individual products. ❏ Inefficiency leading to efficiency Because teams allow for lots of participation and sharing, mutual influence about purpose, and blurring of roles, they may initially be inefficient. As the team develops, because they come to know one another so well and can anticipate each other’s moves, they become much more efficient than single people working alone. ❏ Extraordinarily high quality Teams produce outcomes above and beyond current standards of performance. They surprise and delight their various constituencies with quality levels not expected and never before obtained. An intolerance of mediocrity exists, so standards of performance are very high. ❏ Creative continuous improvement Large-scale innovations as well as never-ending small improvements characterize the team’s processes and activities. Dissatisfaction with the status quo leads to a constant flow of new ideas, experimentation, and a quest for progress. ❏ High credibility and trust Team members trust one another implicitly, defend members who are not present, and form interdependent relationships with one another. Personal integrity and honesty characterize team activities and team member interactions. ❏ Clarity of core competence The unique talents and strategic advantages of the team and its members are clear. The ways in which these competencies can be utilized to further the team’s objectives are well understood. Extraneous activities and deflections from the team’s core mission are given low priority. Sources: Adapted from Hackman, J. R. (1990). Groups that work (and those that don’t). San Francisco: Jossey-Bass; Katzenbach, J. R., & Smith, D. K. (1993). The wisdom of teams. Cambridge, MA: Harvard Business School Press; and Petrock, F. (1991). Team dynamics: A workshop for effective team building. Presentation at the University of Michigan’s Management of Managers Program.

scenarios and potential solutions. I would pose a question to the group: “O.K., you have a ship that docked at Ad Dammam this morning. It’s ready to be unloaded, and the onboard crane breaks. What’s our response?” Collectively, the group would work toward one of several solutions. . . . These group sessions served several useful purposes at once. Obviously, they brought potential challenges into the open so we could better prepare for them. . . . Equally important, they promoted collaborative discussion across ranks and disciplines. (Pagonis, 1993: 101, 177) 468 CHAPTER 9 BUILDING EFFECTIVE TEAMS AND TEAMWORK

In addition to multifaceted relationships and unconditional commitment to one another, highperforming team members also take responsibility individually for continuously improving the team and its processes. Experimentation, trial-and-error learning, freewheeling discussions of new possibilities, and personal responsibility by everyone for upgrading performance is typical. The team adopts a set of behaviors that help to foster and perpetuate this stage of development, including: ❏

Capitalizing on core competence ❏ Fostering innovation and continuous improvement

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❏ ❏

Enhancing speed and timeliness Encouraging creative problem solving

The performing stage is characterized by a focus on the pursuit of both continuous improvement and innovation. Continuous improvement refers to small, incremental changes team members initiate. Continuous improvement can be represented by a hundred 1 percent changes. Innovation, on the other hand, represents large, visible, discontinuous changes. Innovations are breakthroughs that can be represented by a single 100 percent change. Traditionally, people in Eastern cultures have been thought to be continuousimprovement oriented; people in Western cultures have been thought to be innovation oriented (Imai, 1986: 32): We find that the West has been stronger on the innovation side and Japan stronger on the Kaizen [the Japanese word for continuous improvement] side. These differences in emphasis are also reflected in the different social and cultural heritages, such as the Western educational system’s stress on individual initiative and creativity as against the Japanese educational system’s emphasis on harmony and collectivism. Table 6 ELEMENT Effect Procedure Time frame Change Involvement Approach Mode Spark Requirements Orientation Evaluation Training Goal Information

Table 6 summarizes the differences between a continuous-improvement approach and an innovation approach to team development. Contrary to Imai’s claim, high-performing teams in this stage of development emphasize both types of improvement: small and continuous as well as large and dramatic. To illustrate the difference between an emphasis on kaizen or continuous improvement and innovation or creative breakthroughs, consider a statement made by an Asian colleague of one of the authors: When you in the West receive a new product or technology, you assume that is the best it will ever be. Durability is at the highest level, no defects are present, and no repairs are needed. On the other hand, when we in the East receive a new product or technology, we assume that is the worst it will ever be, because we haven’t had a chance to improve it yet. From now on, it gets better. This statement illustrates the culture that is needed in high-performing teams—to develop a continuous-improvement approach coupled with an innovation approach to team performance. After having moved through the first three stages of development in the Persian Gulf War, General Pagonis’s logistics team

Characteristics of Innovation and Continuous Improvement (Kaizen) KAIZEN Long term, long lasting, undramatic Small steps Continuous, incremental Gradual, constant, predictable Everyone Collectivism, group effort, systems approach Maintenance and improvement Conventional know-how and state of the art Little up-front investment, large effort to maintain it People Process, efforts, systems Generalist Adaptability Widely shared, open communication INNOVATION Short term, dramatic Large steps Intermittent, nonincremental Abrupt, unpredictable A few champions Rugged individualism, individual ideas and effort Scrap and rebuild Technological breakthroughs, new inventions, new theories Large up-front investment, little effort to maintain it Technology Profits, outcomes Specialist Creativity Not widely shared, proprietary

Source: Imai, M. (1986). Kaizen: The Key to Japan’s competitive success. New York: Random House, pp. 24, 32.

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Figure 3

Basic, Performance, and Excitement Factors
Satisfaction Love it

B Excitement Curve

Performance

E Awful A D Great

Performance Slope

Basic Requirements

C

Hate it

moved into a stage characterized by innovation and continuous improvement. On one occasion, Pagonis directed two team members to generate a solution to the problem of how to provide combat troops with decent meals on the front lines. Imagine that you’ve been at some remote and desolate desert site for weeks, or even months, consuming dehydrated or vacuumpacked military rations. One day, unannounced, an odd-looking vehicle with the word “Wolfmobile” painted on it comes driving into your camp. The side panels open up, and a smiling crew inside offers to cook you a hamburger to order. “Side of fries? How about a Coke?” Morale shot up everywhere the Wolfmobiles pulled in—a little bit of home in the desert. (Pagonis, 1993: 129) 470 CHAPTER 9 BUILDING EFFECTIVE TEAMS AND TEAMWORK

This incident illustrates a major challenge of a team in the fourth stage of development, to help team members expand their focus from merely accomplishing their work and maintaining good interpersonal relationships to upgrading and elevating the team’s performance. Another way to illustrate this challenge is depicted in Figure 3. This figure illustrates three different kinds of challenges a high-performing team faces—to effectively accomplish its stated goals (basic requirements), to continuously improve on its past performance (performance slope), and, finally, to reach a level of performance beyond anything that it could have predicted (excitement curve). In the figure, the vertical axis on the graph represents the satisfaction level of those the team may serve. It ranges from high satisfaction (“love it”) on the top to low satisfaction (“hate it”) on the bottom. The horizontal axis represents the performance of the team

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and ranges from low performance (“awful”) on the left to high performance (“great”) on the right. To understand the figure, consider the experience of purchasing an automobile. If we were to ask you what features are of most interest to you when purchasing a new car, you might list gas mileage, having four doors, roominess, a responsive engine, and good handling. If the auto dealer showed you a car that exactly met your expectations, we would position you at the intersection of the two axes at point A, that is, in the middle of the satisfaction axis (you’re satisfied) and in the middle of the performance axis (the car performs at your expectation level). However, if after driving it, you discovered that the car performed much better than you expected—say, gas mileage was better and the engine was more powerful—satisfaction would also increase to point B in the figure. If, however, the car got terrible gas mileage and rattled and leaked, that is, it performed lower than expected, satisfaction would also decrease to point C on the graph. Connecting points A, B, and C results in a performance curve. These are the features that the team tries to improve continuously, to drive satisfaction up by finding ways to push performance to the right side of the axis. These features are identifiable and easily recognized. If you drove your new car and discovered that although the features you requested were satisfactory, the car had no carpet and no shock absorbers, you would no doubt be dissatisfied. But, we suspect, we could have asked you for a comprehensive list of features you were looking for in a car and you would probably never list carpet and shock absorbers. That is because you assume that these items are basic features of all new cars. If such basic features are missing, people are dissatisfied. However, no one cares much about whether the shock absorbers are painted red or black, cost $5 or $35, or whether there are one or two on each tire, so long as the ride is smooth. This illustrates the fact that a basic curve also exists in the figure. If certain basic features are absent, people are upset (point C). But the presence of additional basic features does not lead to a rise in satisfaction (point D). Having more of a basic feature simply does not add value. Now assume that when you got into the car, the seat and the mirrors automatically adjusted themselves to fit your height and leg length, the seat became heated almost immediately on cold winter days, and an automatic guidance system with maps of all major cities was projected on the dash when you started the car. The car, in other words, contained something that

you didn’t expect but that was useful—a delightful surprise. Satisfaction would go up to point B. On the other hand, if no such features were present in the car, satisfaction would not decrease, because these features weren’t expected in the first place (point E). Connecting points B and E creates an excitement curve that shows what happens when innovation and breakthroughs occur. Loyalty and commitment are products of receiving features on the excitement curve. The point of this figure is simple: High-performing teams must perform their basic work competently and accomplish their required tasks (the basic curve). They also must continuously improve on their task accomplishment and strive to generate higher performance and satisfaction with their outcomes and achievements (the performance curve). They become high-performance teams only by producing innovations, delightful surprises, and breakthroughs in task accomplishments and achievements (the excitement curve). Such teams are, unfortunately, quite rare, but their power and influence on team members is transformational. Once a person experiences this kind of team performance, team performance stuck in the first three stages of development will never be satisfactory again.

SUMMARY
All of us are members of multiple teams—at work, at home, and in the community. Teams are becoming increasingly prevalent in the workplace because they have been shown to be powerful tools to improve the performance of individuals and organizations. Consequently, it is important to become proficient in leading and participating in teams. It is obvious that merely putting people together and giving them an assigned task does not make them into a team. Students often complain about an excessive amount of teamwork in business schools, but most of it is less real teamwork than a repetitive experience of aggregating people together and assigning them a task. In this chapter, we have reviewed three types of team skills: leading a team, being an effective team member, and facilitating team development. Figure 4 illustrates the relationship of these three key skills to high-performing team performance. These three skills are ones that you have no doubt engaged in before, but to be a skillful manager, you will need to hone your ability to perform each of these skill activities competently. BUILDING EFFECTIVE TEAMS AND TEAMWORK CHAPTER 9

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Figure 4

Management Skills for High-Performing Teams
Leading Teams • Develop credibility • Articulate a vision High-Performing Teams • Desired outcomes • Shared purpose Team Membership • Play task facilitation roles • Play relationship building roles • Provide feedback • Accountability • Blurred distinctions • Coordinated roles • Efficiency and participation • High quality • Creative continuous improvement • Credibility and trust • Core competence

Team Development • Diagnose stage development • Foster team development and high performance

BEHAVIORAL GUIDELINES
1. As the leader of a team, you must first develop credibility as a prerequisite to having team members follow you by: ❏ Demonstrating integrity and displaying congruence ❏ Being clear and consistent about what you want to achieve ❏ Creating positive energy by being optimistic and complimentary ❏ Building a base of agreement before moving on with task accomplishment ❏ Managing agreement and disagreement by using one-sided and two-sided arguments appropriately ❏ Encouraging and coaching team members to help them improve ❏ Sharing information about the team itself and from external sources, and encourage participation 2. After developing credibility, you must articulate a motivating vision for the team, characterized by: ❏ Left-brained (rational objectives) and rightbrained (symbols and images) elements ❏ Interesting challenges to the status quo ❏ Passionate language based on core, personal principles

SMART (Specific, Measurable, Aligned, Realistic but stretching, and T ime-bound) goals 3. You can play the role of effective team member in facilitating task performance by: ❏ Giving directions ❏ Seeking information ❏ Giving information ❏ Elaborating others’ ideas ❏ Urging task performance ❏ Monitoring progress ❏ Analyzing the team’s processes ❏ Testing the reality of suggestions ❏ Enforcing team rules ❏ Summarizing comments 4. You can play the role of effective team member in building relationships among team members by: ❏ Supporting team members ❏ Harmonizing disagreements ❏ Relieving tension through humor ❏ Confronting unproductive behavior ❏ Energizing others ❏ Developing team members’ abilities ❏ Building consensus ❏ Empathizing with others 5. When encountering team members who block the team’s performance with disruptive behav-



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iors, confront the behavior and/or isolate the disruptive member. 6. Provide feedback to unhelpful team members that has the following characteristics: ❏ Focused on the behavior, not the person ❏ Based on observations and descriptions rather than inferences or personal judgments ❏ Related to specific here-and-now behavior, not past or abstract behavior ❏ The sharing of ideas more than the giving of advice ❏ Based on the amount of information given on what the recipient wants or requires ❏ Information that benefits the receiver rather than just being an emotional release ❏ Shared at appropriate times and places 7. Learn to diagnose the stage in which your team is operating in order to help facilitate team development. Know the key characteristics of the forming, norming, storming, and performing stages of development. 8. In the forming stage: ❏ Encourage team member orientation ❏ Foster trust

Encourage relationship building Clarify purpose and expectations 9. In the norming stage: ❏ Foster unity ❏ Show support ❏ Provide feedback ❏ Encourage team member empowerment 10. In the storming stage: ❏ Manage conflict ❏ Legitimize expressions of difference ❏ Foster interdependence ❏ Work toward consensus building 11. In the performing stage: ❏ Identify and capitalize the team’s core competence ❏ Foster innovation and continuous improvement ❏ Foster speed ❏ Encourage creative problem solving and excitement levels of performance

❏ ❏

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SKILL ANALYSIS
CASES INVOLVING BUILDING EFFECTIVE TEAMS
The Tallahassee Democrat ’s ELITE Team
Katzenbach and Smith (1993: 67–72), as part of their extensive research on teams, observed the formation of a team at the Tallahassee Democrat, the only major newspaper left in Tallahassee, Florida. Here is their description of how the team, which called itself “ELITE Team,” performed over time. All incidents and names are factual. As you read the description, look for evidence of team development stages. Fred Mott, general manager of the Democrat, recognized [the declining profitability and distribution of most major metropolitan newspapers] earlier than many of his counterparts. In part, Mott took his lead from Jim Batten, who made “customer obsession” the central theme of his corporate renewal effort shortly after he became Knight-Ridder’s CEO. But the local marketplace also shaped Mott’s thinking. The Democrat was Tallahassee’s only newspaper and made money in spite of its customer service record. Mott believed, however, that further growth could never happen unless the paper learned to serve customers in ways “far superior to anything else in the marketplace.” The ELITE Team story actually began with the formation of another team made up of Mott and his direct reports. The management group knew they could not hope to build a “customer obsession” across the mile-high barriers isolating production from circulation from advertising without first changing themselves. It had become all too common, they admitted, for them to engage in “power struggles and finger pointing.” Using regularly scheduled Monday morning meetings, Mott’s group began to “get to know each other’s strengths and weaknesses, bare their souls, and build a level of trust.” Most important, they did so by focusing on real work they could do together. For example, early on they agreed to create a budget for the paper as a team instead of singly as function heads. Over time, the change in behavior at the top began to be noticed. One of the women who later joined the ELITE Team, for example, observed that the sight of senior management holding their “Monday morning come-to-Jesus” meetings really made a difference to her and others. “I saw all this going on and I thought, ‘What are they so happy about?’” Eventually, as the team at the top got stronger and more confident, they forged a higher aspiration: to build customer focus and break down the barriers across the broad base of the paper. . . . A year after setting up the new [team], however, Mott was both frustrated and impatient. Neither the Advertising Customer Service department, a series of customer surveys, additional resources thrown against the problem in the interim, nor any number of top management exhortations had made any difference. Ad errors persisted, and sales reps still complained of insufficient time with customers. In fact, the new unit had turned into another organizational barrier. Customer surveys showed that too many advertisers still found the Democrat unresponsive to their needs and too concerned with internal procedures and dead-

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lines. People at the paper also had evidence beyond surveys. In one instance, for example, a sloppily prepared ad arrived through a fax machine looking like a “rat had run across the page.” Yet the ad passed through the hands of seven employees and probably would have found its way into print if it had not been literally unreadable! As someone commented, “It was not anyone’s job to make sure it was right. If they felt it was simply their job to type or paste it up, they just passed it along.” This particular fax, affectionately known as the “rat tracks fax,” came to symbolize the essential challenge at the Democrat. . . . At the time, Mott was reading about Motorola’s quality programs and the goal of zero defects. He decided to heed Dunlap’s advice by creating a special team of workers charged with eliminating all errors in advertisements. Mott now admits he was skeptical that frontline people could become as cohesive a team as he and his direct reports. So he made Dunlap, his trusted confidante, the leader of the team that took on the name ELITE for “ELIminate The Errors.” A year later, Mott was a born-again believer in teams. Under ELITE’s leadership, advertising accuracy, never before tracked at the paper, had risen sharply and stayed above 99 percent. Lost revenues from errors, previously as high as $10,000 a month, had dropped to near zero. Ad sales reps had complete confidence in the Advertising Customer Service department’s capacity and desire to treat each ad as though the Democrat’s existence were at stake. And surveys showed a huge positive swing in advertiser satisfaction. Mott considered all of this nothing less than a minor miracle. The impact of ELITE, however, went beyond numbers. It completely redesigned the process by which the Democrat sells, creates, produces, and bills for advertisments. More important yet, it stimulated and nurtured the customer obsession and cross-functional cooperation required to make the new process work. In effect, this team of mostly frontline workers transformed an entire organization with respect to customer service. ELITE had a lot going for it from the beginning. Mott gave the group a clear performance goal (eliminate errors) and a strong mix of skills (12 of the best people from all parts of the paper). He committed himself to follow through by promising, at the first meeting, that “whatever solution you come up with will be implemented.” In addition, Jim Batten’s customer obsession movement helped energize the task force. But it took more than a good sendoff and an overarching corporate theme to make ELITE into a high-performance team. In this case, the personal commitments began to grow, unexpectedly, over the early months as the team grappled with its challenge. At first, the group spent more time pointing fingers at one another than coming to grips with advertising errors. Only when one of them produced the famous “rat tracks fax” and told the story behind it did the group start to admit that everyone—not everyone else—was at fault. Then, recalls one member, “We had some pretty hard discussions. And there were tears in those meetings.” The emotional response galvanized the group to the task at hand and to one another. And the closer it got, the more focused it became on the challenge. ELITE decided to look carefully at the entire process by which an ad was sold, created, printed, and billed. When it did, the team discovered patterns in the errors, most of which could be attributed to time pressures, bad communication, and poor attitude. . . . Commitment to one another drove ELITE to expand its aspirations continually. Having started with the charge to eliminate errors, ELITE moved on to break down functional barriers, then to redesigning the entire advertising process, then to refining new standards and measures for customer service, and, finally, to spreading its own brand of “customer obsession” across the entire Democrat. . . . Inspired by ELITE, for example, one production crew started coming to work at 4 A.M., to ease time pressures later in the day. . . .

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To this day, the spirit of ELITE lives on at the Democrat. “There is no beginning and no end,” says Dunlap. “Every day we experience something we learn from.” ELITE’s spirit made everyone a winner—the customers, the employees, management, and even Knight-Ridder’s corporate leaders. CEO Jim Batten was so impressed that he agreed to pay for managers from other Knight-Ridder papers to visit the Democrat to learn from ELITE’s experience. And, of course, the 12 people who committed themselves to one another and their paper had an impact and an experience none of them will ever forget.

Discussion Questions 1. What were the stages of development of the ELITE Team? Identify specific examples of each of the four stages of development in the case. 2. How do you explain the team’s reaching a high-performance condition? What were the major predictive factors? 3. Why didn’t Mott’s top management team reach a high level of performance? What was his team lacking? Why was an ELITE team needed? 4. Make recommendations about what Mott should do now to capitalize on the ELITE Team experience. If you were to become a consultant to the Tallahassee Democrat, what advice would you give Mott about how he can capitalize on team building?

The Cash Register Incident
Read the following scenario by yourself. Then complete a two-step exercise, the first step by yourself and the second step in a team. A time limit is associated with each step. A store owner had just turned off the lights in the store when a man appeared and demanded money. The owner opened a cash register. The contents of the cash register were scooped up, and the man sped away. A member of the police force was notified promptly.

Step 1: Assume that you observed the incident described in the paragraph above. Later, a reporter asks you questions about what you read in order to write an article for the local newspaper. Answer the questions from the reporter by yourself. Do not talk with anyone else about your answers. Put a Y, N, or DK in the response column. Since reporters are always pressed for time, take no more than two minutes to complete step 1. Answer Y Yes, or true N No, or false DK Don’t know, or there is no way to tell Step 2: The reporter wants to interview your entire team together. As a team, discuss the answers to each question and reach a consensus decision—that is, one with which everyone on the team agrees. Do not vote or engage in horse-trading. The reporter wants to know what you all agree upon. Complete your team discussion in ten minutes. Statements About the Incident “As a reporter, I am interested in what happened in this incident. Can you tell me what occurred? I’d like you to address the following 11 questions.”

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Statement Alone Team 1. Did a man appear after the owner turned off his store lights? 2. Was the robber a man? 3. Is it true that the man did not demand money? 4. The man who opened the cash register was the owner, right? 5. Did the store owner scoop up the contents of the cash register? 6. Okay, so someone opened the cash register, right? 7. Let me get this straight, after the man who demanded the money scooped up the contents of the cash register, he ran away? 8. The contents of the cash register contained money, but you don’t know how much? 9. Did the robber demand money of the owner? 10. Okay, by way of summary, the incident concerns a series of events in which only three persons are involved: the owner of the store, a man who demanded money, and a member of the police force? 11. Let me be sure I understand. Is it true that the following events occurred: Someone demanded money, the cash register was opened, its contents were scooped up, and a man dashed out of the store? When you have finished your team decision making and mock interview with the reporter, the instructor will provide correct answers. Calculate how many answers you got right as an individual, then calculate how many right answers your team achieved.

Discussion Questions 1. How many individuals did better than the team as a whole? Why? 2. What changes were needed in order for your team score to be better? 3. How do you explain the superior performance of most teams over even the best individuals? 4. Under what conditions would individuals do better than teams in making decisions?

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SKILL PRACTICE
EXERCISES IN BUILDING EFFECTIVE TEAMS
Team Diagnosis and Team Development Exercise
In order to help you develop the ability to diagnose team stage development, consider a team in which you are now a member. If you belong to a team as part of this class, select that one. You may also select a team at your employment, in your church or community, or a team in another class in school. Complete the following three-step exercise: Step 1: Use the following questions to help you determine the stage of development in which your team is operating. Create a score for your team for each stage of development. Identify the stage in which the team seems to operate the most. Step 2: Identify what actions or interventions would lead your team to the next higher stage of development. Specify what dynamics need to change, what team members need to do, and/or how the team leader could foster more advanced team development. Step 3: Share your scores and your suggestions with others in class in a small group setting, and add at least one good idea from someone else’s diagnosis to your own design. Use the following scale in your rating of your team right now. Rating Scale 1 2 3 4 Not typical at all of my team Not very typical of my team Somewhat typical of my team Very typical of my team

Stage 1 1. Not everyone is clear about the objectives and goals of the team. 2. Not everyone is personally acquainted with everyone else in the team. 3. Only a few team members actively participate. 4. Interactions among team members are very safe or somewhat superficial. 5. Trust among all team members has not yet been established. 6. Many team members seem to need direction from the leader in order to participate. Stage 2 7 . All team members know and agree with the objectives and goals of the team. 8. Team members all know one another. 9. Team members are very cooperative and actively participate in the activities of the team.

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10. Interactions among team members are friendly, personal, and nonsuperficial. 11. A comfortable level of trust has been established among team members. 12. A strong unity exists in the team, and team members feel very much a part of a special group. Stage 3 13. Disagreements and differing points of view are openly expressed by team members. 14. Competition exists among some team members. 15. Some team members do not follow the rules or the team norms. 16. Subgroups or coalitions exist within the team. 17 . Some issues create major disagreements when discussed by the team, with some members on one side and others on the other side. 18. The authority or competence of the team leader is being questioned or challenged. Stage 4 19. Team members are committed to the team and actively cooperate to improve the team’s performance. 20. Team members feel free to try out new ideas, experiment, share something crazy, or do novel things. 21. A high level of energy is displayed by team members and expectations for performance are very high. 22. Team members do not always agree, but a high level of trust exists and each person is given respect, so disagreements are resolved productively. 23. Team members are committed to helping one another succeed and improve, so self-aggrandizement is at a minimum. 24. The team can make fast decisions without sacrificing quality.

Scoring Add up the scores for the items in each stage of team development. Generally, one stage clearly stands out as having the highest scores. Team stages develop sequentially, so the highest stage in which scores occur is usually the dominant stage of development. Based on these scores, identify ways to move the team to the next level. Total of Stage 1 items Total of Stage 2 items Total of Stage 3 items Total of Stage 4 items

Winning the War on Talent
In this exercise, you will form teams of six members. Your team will have an overall objective to achieve, and each team member will have individual objectives. The exercise BUILDING EFFECTIVE TEAMS AND TEAMWORK CHAPTER 9

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is accomplished in seven steps and will be given a total of 50 minutes to complete steps 1 through 6. Step 1: In your team, read the scenario below about the problem of attracting and retaining talented employees in twenty-first-century organizations. Your team objective is to generate two innovative but workable ideas for how to retain good teachers in the public school system. You will have 15 minutes to develop the ideas. Step 2: When each team has completed the assignment, each is given two minutes to present the two ideas. These ideas will be evaluated, and a winning team will be selected based on the following criteria: ❏ The ideas are workable and affordable. ❏ The ideas are interesting, innovative, and unusual. ❏ The ideas have a good chance of making a difference if they are implemented. Step 3: In addition to the team assignment, each team member is assigned to play three team member roles during the discussion. A role assignment schedule is listed below. Team members may select the roles they wish to play, or an instructor can assign the roles. One purpose of this individual assignment is to give team members practice in playing either task-facilitation roles or relationship-building roles in a team setting, so you should take these assignments seriously. Remember, however, that you have only 15 minutes. When your team has completed its task, each team member will rate the effectiveness of every other team member in how well they played their roles and how much they helped the team accomplish its task. You will have 5 minutes to complete the ratings.

TEAM MEMBER NAME 1

ROLES

PERFORMANCE RATING (1) LOW–(10) HIGH PERFORMANCE FEEDBACK

Direction giving Urging Enforcing

2

Information seeking Information giving Elaborating

3

Monitoring Reality testing Summarizing

4

Process analyzing Supporting Confronting

5

Harmonizing Tension relieving Energizing

6

Developing Consensus building Empathizing

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Step 4: Each team member uses the form above to rate the performance of, and provide feedback to, every other member of the team. In completing the form, make sure you focus on how well each person performed his or her assigned roles. Identify at least one thing you noticed about the performance of each team member so that you can provide personal feedback to each one. Remember that the overall purpose of this exercise is to give you practice in playing effective roles in teams and providing feedback to team members. You are given 5 minutes for this rating task. Step 5: When each team has completed its task, one representative from each team is selected to form a judging team. This judging team evaluates the quality of the ideas produced by each team. A winning team is announced as a result of their deliberations. (Other class members will want to observe and rate the performance of this judging team and its members as they make their selection.) The judging team will be given 10 minutes to select the winning team. Step 6: Teams meet again so that personal feedback can be given. Each team member takes a total of three minutes to give feedback to the other members of his or her team based on the evaluation form above. A total of 20 minutes will be required to provide this feedback. Step 7: Hold a class discussion about what you observed regarding team members’ roles. Especially, reflect on your own experience trying to play those roles and what seemed to be most effective in facilitating task accomplishment and in building team cohesion.

The Problem Scenario The chief concern expressed by senior executives in most “old economy” firms is how to attract and retain managerial talent. With the economy expected to grow at almost three times the growth of the job market, finding competent employees will be a continuing challenge for the next several years. The allure of dot-com firms, high-growth companies, and high-risk–high-return ventures has created an incredibly difficult environment for organizations whose chief competitive advantage is intellectual capital and human talent. Headhunters, venture capitalists, and even firms’ customers are aggressively trying to lure away management talent any way they can. A recent survey of Wall Street investment bankers revealed that more than half had been approached by an Internet company. Armed with venture capital dollars and business plans promising swift public offerings, it is easy to see why many are succeeding in attracting managerial talent away from traditional companies. Compensation packages in the seven figures are not unusual. In this highly competitive environment where intellectual capital is at a premium, consider the difficulty faced by not-for-profit organizations, local or state governments, arts organizations, or educational institutions whose budgets are constrained far below the high-priced world of the “new economy.” How will they compete for talent when they cannot come close to the salaries of firms whose market capitalization exceeds the gross domestic product (GDP) of many African countries? In particular, the U.S. public education system has suffered tremendously in this environment. Currently, the United States spends more per child than any other country, and the costs of education are increasing far faster than the consumer price index. However, it is well known that more than a quarter of public school students drop out before high school graduation, and of those who remain, the percentage passing proficiency exams is woefully low—in some school districts, less than 10 percent. The average tenure of public school teachers is less than seven years, and that number is dropping rapidly as these knowledge workers can find positions elsewhere at triple and quadruple their school salaries. Add to that the difficulties escalating in the classroom resulting from students in single parent homes, marginal economic circumstances, threats of violence, and BUILDING EFFECTIVE TEAMS AND TEAMWORK CHAPTER 9

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behavioral disruptions, and it is clear why teaching is a difficult profession, even if monetary compensation were higher. Numerous alternatives have been proposed, but few have addressed the problem of teacher attraction and retention. Your task as a team is to identify two answers to the question: How can we attract and retain teachers in the public schools of the United States? You may want to consider what is being done in the school systems in other countries or in highly effective school systems in America.

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SKILL APPLICATION
ACTIVITIES FOR BUILDING EFFECTIVE TEAMS
Suggested Assignments
1. Teach someone else how to determine which stage of development a team is in and what behaviors are most effective in each separate stage. 2. Analyze the characteristics of a team in which you are a member. Determine in what ways its functioning could be improved. Based on the attributes of highperformance teams, identify what could be done to improve its performance. 3. Conduct a role analysis of a real team meeting that is trying to make a decision, solve a problem, or examine an issue. Who performed what roles? Which team members were most helpful? Which team members were least helpful? Provide feedback to the team on what roles you saw being played, what roles were missing, and what improvements could have made the team more effective. 4. Write out a formal vision statement for a team you are leading. Make certain that the vision possesses the attributes of effective, energizing vision statements discussed in the chapter. Identify specifically what you can do to get team members to commit to that vision. 5. Do an in-depth analysis of an effective team leader you know. Focus specifically on the ways in which he or she has developed credibility and continues to influence team members. Identify what followers say about credibility, not just the leader. 6. Teach someone, or coach someone, on how to become an effective leader of a team, and how to become an effective team member. Demonstrate or exemplify the skills you teach that person. 7. For a team in which you participate, identify the basic services that it must deliver, the performance services that it should deliver, and the excitement services that it could deliver to its customers if it were not only to satisfy, but also to surprise and delight them.

Application Plan and Evaluation
The intent of this exercise is to help you apply this cluster of skills in a real-life, out-of-class setting. Now that you have become familiar with the behavioral guidelines that form the basis of effective skill performance, you will improve most by trying out those guidelines in an everyday context. Unlike a classroom activity, in which feedback is immediate and others can assist you with their evaluations, this skill application activity is one you must accomplish and evaluate on your own. There are two parts to this activity. Part 1 helps prepare you to apply the skill. Part 2 helps you evaluate and improve on your experience. Be sure to write down answers to each item. Don’t short-circuit the process by skipping steps. BUILDING EFFECTIVE TEAMS AND TEAMWORK CHAPTER 9

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Part 1. Planning
1. Write down the two or three aspects of this skill that are most important to you. These may be areas of weakness, areas you most want to improve, or areas that are most salient to a problem you face right now. Identify the specific aspects of this skill that you want to apply. 2. Now identify the setting or the situation in which you will apply this skill. Establish a plan for performance by actually writing down a description of the situation. Who else will be involved? When will you do it? Where will it be done? Circumstances: Who else? When? Where? 3. Identify the specific behaviors in which you will engage to apply this skill. Operationalize your skill performance. 4. What are the indicators of successful performance? How will you know you have been effective? What will indicate you have performed competently?

Part 2. Evaluation
5. After you have completed your implementation, record the results. What happened? How successful were you? What was the effect on others? 6. How can you improve? What modifications can you make next time? What will you do differently in a similar situation in the future? 7. Looking back on your whole skill practice and application experience, what have you learned? What has been surprising? In what ways might this experience help you in the long term?

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