Team Building

Team building refers to shaping of the team for smooth functioning. Steven and Mary Ann Von have defined team building as any formal intervention directed towards improving the development and functioning of a work team. Thus, the process of team building aims at enhancing the effectiveness of a team. Pareek Udai has suggested following approaches for team building.


The Johari Window Approach: This approach aims at helping members to express their feelings, opinions, reactions and accept feedback from team members. This enhances their sensitivity towards the team members.


The Role Negotiation Approach: This approach focuses on understanding the expectations of the team members and accommodating their behaviour according to the expectations. This enhances the collaborative effort of the team members.


The Team Roles Approach: This approach advocates that there are certain roles which each team members are expected to perform. Belbin has identified eight roles. They are: Chairman/coordinator, shaper, plant, monitor/evaluator, company worker, resource investigator, team worker and completer/finisher. Smooth performance of these roles brings harmony in the effort of the team members.


The Behaviour Modification Approach: This approach focuses on examining members behaviour towards the team. The individual member evaluates his/her own behaviour and finds out the most suitable behaviour. Now he/she adopts the most suitable behaviour for the performance of the team.


The Simulation Approach: In this approach an artificial team is formed where members interact, discuss, deliberate and learn from other members behaviour. In this situation, the team members learn the most effective way of dealing with the challenges and meet the requirements and the expectations of the team members.


The Action Research Approach: In this approach, the whole range of behaviour is analysed and evaluated. The researcher interacts with the team members and evaluates their behaviour. The effort is made to find out most suitable behaviour of the team members.


The Appreciative Inquiry Approach: This approach focuses on the identification of positive qualities in the team members. The effort is made to channelise these positive qualities towards the achievements of the team goal. Pareek Udai has integrated the above approaches and further suggested following approaches for team building which are discussed below:


Projection into Future: In this approach, the team members prepare common vision of the team. Several small teams may prepare their own vision which may be further developed as a broader organisational vision. The team members may be encouraged to make effort towards realising them.


Linkage with Individual Goals: As you must be aware that the building block of the team is individual. Each person has his/her individual goal as well as team goal. Therefore, the individual goal must be integrated with the team goal. This brings harmony in the team effort and enhances the performance of the team.


Force Field Analysis: Several forces influence the performance of the team. Team members are required to analyse these forces and identify the positive forces. These favourable forces are channelised for the achievement of the team goal.


Strengthening Positive Forces: The positive forces are identified and further reinforced. The reinforcement of behaviour motivates the members for making efforts towards the realisation of team goal. This further strengthens the positive behaviour of the team members.


Reducing Negative Forces: In this approach, the forces which inhibit the performance of the team are identified. The efforts are made to remove these negative forces.


Monitoring: The team members chalk out detailed plans and targets to be achieved. The mechanisms for achieving these targets are spelt out. The steps are devised to monitor them at each step. The proper monitoring mechanism facilitates the process of accomplishment of team goal.

While building the team, the managers must take into account those factors which contribute to effective accomplishment of the team goals. The integrated view of the above approaches may provide better insights for enhancing the effectiveness of the team.

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