Introduction to Team Development:
Every success story involves joining hands with several other people to hit the jackpot. These people have different preferences, opinions, inputs, and expertise. The one thing that brings them together is a common goal. Want to see how they usually climb this ladder together to taste success? Let us find out by comprehending the meaning, stages, and formation of an effective team.
Team development is the process by which the team members come together with their different capabilities and expertise and make their best efforts to achieve common objectives. This involves sharing an effective relationship with the team members and with other adjacent teams. Team development not only includes putting everyone’s best abilities together but also involves overcoming their flaws. Team members should recognize their strengths and embrace their differences as well. Discussions, debates, and the flow of information on various subjects is the key part of team development. Good team development is the most crucial part of jumping through hoops.
Definition and Meaning of Team Development:
Team development is the process by which several individuals come together with different capabilities, expertise, inputs, opinions, and suggestions and learn to cooperate to endeavor and eventually move mountains. There must be positive synergy between all the team members and a smooth flow of information to maximize the team’s productivity. Sharing ideas and healthily debating on them is what makes the team more efficient.
Initial stages of team development might involve constant stubbornness, refusals, and an exasperated nature like a school-going kid, but all this comes to a halt when they learn to respect each other’s opinions and trust each other’s suggestions.
Stages of Team Development:
Team development is not exactly a linear process. The behavioral patterns of a team can change drastically within days. You may see your team completely agreeing on a particular subject momentarily and fighting tooth and nail on a different subject the very next moment. Identifying the complications in the relationship and filling the gaps is the best way to deal with these situations. You should always make sure all team members are on the same page and have common ground to talk about. This might require you to resolve all their conflicts to plant a good and trustworthy relationship between them.
Do you wish to have the most reliable and trustworthy team members? Let’s learn about the process of creating your dream team.
Bruce Tuckman was an American psychological researcher who consistently researched and experimented with group dynamics. He came up with these 5 stages of team development, which were then published as a theory known as “Tuckman’s stages of group development”. Let’s find out the 5 stages of team development to make the most efficient and productive team in your workplace.
Forming– This is the initial stage of team development and shows the most ups and downs in behavioral patterns. Many questions might arise in this tenure regarding the roles of the candidates or expectations from the candidates. You should address all these questions and clarify any and every doubt that comes to their mind. Many social conversations take place during this period; therefore, the team members get to know each other more personally. You must get involved in these conversations to make them feel comfortable and included.
Storming– This is the most strenuous process of team development. Efficiency is significantly reduced in this period due to difficulties in operating smoothly and adjusting with others. There are significant disapprovals, refusals, and vigorous, unhealthy debates, making it difficult for the manager to find common ground and make them cooperate. You must make them trust each other to make them much more productive as a whole. It is common for the team to bog down at this stage. The team needs time to appreciate others’ expertise and be more open-minded. After all, they have a common goal and have to fulfill all the company requirements, and that too within the given deadline.
Norming– This is where things start getting better for you. The team members finally start addressing these conflicts and taking adequate steps to resolve them. They start embracing their differences and building a more inclusive environment in the workplace. This results in a boost in overall productivity. They not only cooperate but also make more space for suggestions. More maturity brings more stability to the table. However, you must be able to maintain this relationship between all the team members. Any further disagreements or conflicts might drag the team down to the storming stage again.
Performing– Once a team reaches the performing stage, they gain confidence in each other, and their performance reaches its peak level. They learn to work as a team and start depending on each other. This not only increases their efficiency but also helps them improve their behavioral patterns. As their conflicts resolve, they spend more time working towards the common goal than solving trivial problems. This is where creative thoughts and innovative ideas are generated and inculcated into ongoing projects. Team members learn the common goal and start working their fingers to the bone to achieve it.
You must constantly reward them for every good deed they do to maintain this momentum. Take more suggestions and input from all the team members without any hesitation. This will make them feel more inclusive.
Adjourning– This is the most heartbreaking part of team development. This is when a team starts terminating its actions and going in different directions. This happens when the company needs change. The team members start losing enthusiasm and getting demotivated about reaching their goals. They somehow finish their projects, but the results do not fulfill all the company requirements. They lose interest in further improving their skills and start looking for a way out. Many of them quit being a part of such a team, and others start looking for other roles. This can make your heart sink, and the best way to deal with this is to let them go and start from the beginning.
Benefits of Team Development in the Workplace:
Team development can be more beneficial than you imagined. Strong team development is essential to reach the target and taste success. Achieving the desired goal is possible only when all the team members work in harmony. Interdependency is another very important component of team building. Without adjustments and cooperation, team members won’t be able to meet expectations, therefore, resulting in poor performance. Let us look at some benefits of correctly shaping the team and effectively managing the team members.
Increasing trust and confidence:
When the team members start depending on each other, they tend to share their ideas and thoughts and effectively collaborate on different projects.
The desired flow of information prevents many misunderstandings and frustrations. Good conversation and communication skills help to increase performance drastically.
Good team development not only helps to increase efficiency but also helps you to build friendships and strong bonds between your colleagues and team members. They back you in your professional as well as personal life. These bonds are never broken and the memories made are remembered forever.
Tips for the Manager for an effective team development:
- Effective communications: Most of the conflicts take place due to misunderstandings and misinterpretations of given information. This can be resolved by upskilling verbal communication or communicating via a written statement in case of any complicated instructions.
- Listening to others: You must listen to your team members and try to understand their points of view. Try to comprehend their problems and issues and resolve them as soon as possible. Sometimes, a problem that might not seem important to you, can considerably affect a new employee.
- Bonding with them: You must build a good relationship with your team members. This includes helping them with adjusting to the workplace or introducing them to other team members.
- Being part of the project: Do not just throw away your workload on your team members. Instead, help them to fulfill the goals within the given period.
- Growth opportunities: Try to identify flaws in your team members and help them to overcome them. This way, team members can learn new things making them more enthusiastic about their jobs.
Conflict resolution: You should be able to resolve the conflicts and arguments occurring in your workplace. To do this, you must make decisions that favor both parties, either partially or completely. This will make them more content and cheerful, therefore improving their relationship.
Good team development is what makes the team act together to achieve a common goal. Team development could be a very strenuous process, but ultimately it pays off by boosting morale, productivity, and efficiency. Teammates argue, debate, disapprove, and refuse several ideas and plans, but ultimately create the best version of the project. They slowly and gradually gain faith and confidence in each other before actually performing miracles in their respective fields. This is the most important and enthusiastic part of the corporate world.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Team development is the process by which the team members come together with their different capabilities and expertise and make their best efforts to achieve common objectives. It is essential as it boosts productivity, creativity, and overall team performance.
According to the Tuckman’s model of team development, the stages are forming (orientation), storming (conflict), norming (integration), performing (production), and adjourning (termination).
Effective team development generally results in improved communication, enhanced problem-solving skills, increased employee satisfaction, and higher overall productivity and innovation in an organization.
Leaders can facilitate it by fostering open communication, promoting trust among employees, providing constructive feedback, and recognizing the strengths of their team members.
Conflict resolution is essential for resolving disagreements within teams, promoting understanding, strengthening relationships and generally fostering a harmonious team environment.