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Chapter 6

OB Chapter 6 - Groups and Teamwork.docx

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Business Administration
BUS 272
Christopher Zatzick

Chp 6: Groups and Teamwork Group - Two or more people with a common relationship o Do not necessarily engage in collective work that requires interdependent effort Team - A small number of people who work closely together toward a common objective and are accountable to one another Organizations focus on effectiveness and efficiency and find teams a good way to mange talent o Teams are more flexible and responsive to change o Teams have capability to quickly assemble, deploy, refocus and disband o Extensive use of teams to generate greater outputs with no increase in inputs Types of Teams October-10-11 4:48 PM Four most common kinds of teams: 1. Problem-Solving Teams  Problem-Solving (Process-Improvement) Team - A group of 5 to 12 employees from the same department who meet for a few hours each week to discuss ways of improving quality, efficiency, and the work environment o Are also planning teams, task forces, or committees o Members share ideas on how to improve work processes and methods  These teams are rarely given the authority to implement any of their suggestions on how to improve the things listed above 2. Self-Managed Teams  Self-Managed (Self-Directed) Team - A group of 10 to 15 employees who take on many of the responsibilities of their former managers o Planning, scheduling of work, assigning tasks, collectively controlling pace of work, making operating decisions, taking action on problems o Self-managed teams often perform better than appointed leaders o Overall research on effectiveness has not been uniformly positive (sometimes have higher absenteeism and turnover rates) 3. Cross-Functional Teams  Cross-Functional (Project) Team - A group of employees at about the same hierarchical level, but from different work areas, who come together to accomplish a task o Each individual is expected to contribute knowledge of his or her field o Allows people from diverse areas to exchange information, develop new ideas, solve problems, and coordinate projects o Early stages often time-consuming as members learn to work with diversity  Task Force - A temporary cross-functional team  Committee - A group composed of members from different departments  Skunkworks - Cross-functional teams that develop spontaneously to create new products or work on complex problems o Typically found in high tech sector and allowed to work on new ideas in isolation 4. Virtual Teams  Virtual Team - A team that uses computer technology to tie together physically dispersed members in order to achieve a common goal o Collaboration online through video conferencing, email o Less direct interaction among members, lack of normal give-and-take of face-to-face discussion o Tend to be more task-oriented and exchange less social-emotional information For virtual teams to be effective: a. Trust is established among team members b. Team progress is monitored closely c. Effort and products of team are publicized through organization From Individual to Team Member Roles Role - A set of expected behaviours of a person in a given position in a social unit Role Expectations - How others believe a person should act in a given situation Role Conflict - A situation in which an individual finds that complying with one role requirement may make it more difficult to comply with another Role Ambiguity - A person is unclear about his or her role o Can lead to confusion, stress and bad feelings Role Overload - Too much is expected of someone Role Underload - Too little is expected of someone and that person feels that he or she is not contributing to the group Norms Norms - Acceptable standards of behaviour within a group that are shared by the group's members o Formalized norms are written rules and procedures, most are informal o Regarding performance, appearance, social arrangement, allocation of resources Most norms develop as: 1. Explicit statements made by group member 2. Critical events in group's history 3. Primacy: first behavioural pattern that emerges sets expectations 4. Carry-over behaviours from past situations: members bring expectations with them Norms are important because:  It facilitates group's survival - seek to enforce norms that increase success  It increases predictability of group members' behaviours - anticipate each other's actions  It reduces embarrassing interpersonal problems  It allows members to express central values of group and clarify what is distinctive about group's identity Conformity - Adjusting one's behaviour to align with the norms of the group Stages of Group and Team Development The Five-Stage Model Stage 1: Forming  Characterized by uncertainty about team's purpose, structure and leadership  Complete when members begin to think of themselves as part of a team Stage 2: Storming  Characterized by intragroup conflict  Members resist constraints on individuality  Conflict over who will control team  Complete when clear hierarchy of leadersh
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