Team development refers to activities that are carried out to promote group performance and progression. It is whereby groups of individuals in an organization are assigned a task to complete together, and it usually involves team cohesiveness and unity (Beverlin 5). The Human Resource department is charged with the responsibility if ensuring proper team development of its employees. Team development is considered a human resource strategy to improve organizational performance, as well as, maintain proper organizational behaviour. It reduces conflict between individuals, thus enhancing the relationship between the employees in an organization (Beverlein 13). Team development is essential for organizations as it emphasizes the need for teamwork, problem-solving, positive communication, and the development of leadership skills in employees.
This paper examines the process of team development in business organizations, highlighting the four phases of team development and the five soft skills required in the work setting. The paper also draws attention to negative team behaviour and the characteristics of individuals who portray negative team behaviour.
Phases of Team Development
Team development is not a theoretical concept and can be applied and implemented practically. However, the implementation of team development activities can only take place systematically so as to ensure that the activity at hand is properly completed. Researchers have identified four main phases of team development including forming, storming, norming and performing (Beverlein 143). Forming refers to the coming together of a team, or put simply, the establishment of members in a team. This is the first stage of team development and the chosen team members come together to carry out a task assigned to them (Beverlein 143). The second stage is storming, and it is the argumentative stage of team development. In this stage, team members present their individual ideas concerning the task at hand and the techniques to be used when solving the task. Conflict can arise during this stage because of the diverse ideas presented by individuals (Beverlein 143).
Norming is the third phase of team development and it is where the team attains normalcy after the storming phase. In this stage, the team comes to a unanimous agreement pertaining to the direction to be taken towards solving the problem and they work together as a team to achieve this. The last phase of team development is performing and it is whereby the team actually performs the task at hand and assesses the success of their performance (Beverlein 143). In relation to this, there are five soft skills employers look for in their employees including, proactive attitude, teamwork, problem solving ability, communication skills, and willingness to serve. These skills are necessary for team development in organizations.
Not all members of a team can contribute positively to their respective teams for the achievement of the set goals and objectives (Parker 2). Some team members may reveal negative team behaviour, which may, in turn, affect the team activities and performance. Negative team members display several characteristics, most of which are destructive and require the immediate attention of teams. Some of the characteristics of a negative team member include aggressiveness, being critical of everyone and every team activity, unpredictable mood swings, preoccupation with self, blame games, impatience, lack of communication, and rejection of teamwork (Parker 53). To deal with such employees team leaders, as well as, those in leadership positions need to work on motivating such individuals into team activities. Team leaders also need to identify the sources of negativity by these employees so as to learn how to effectively deal with such employees (Parker 75). Such team members need to be made aware of the significance of being in a team, over and above, the importance of the team in itself.
Beverlein, Michael M. et al. Team development, Volume 5. USA: Emerald Group Publishing,
Parker, Glenn M. Team Players and Teamwork: New Strategies for Developing Successful
Collaboration. New York: John Wiley and Sons, 2011. Print.
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