You are on page 1of 41

1

HARE AND THE TORTOISE

We all have heard the story of HARE AND THE


TORTOISE and the famous race they had. The
moral of the story was that SLOW AND
STEADY WINS THE RACE.
3

The story does not end there. Some interesting


sequels to the story have been developed. The
sequels run as follows
The hare was disappointed at losing the race
and he did some soul searching. He realized
that he had lost the race only because he had
been overconfident, careless and negligent. If
he had not taken things for granted, there was
no way the tortoise could have beaten him.

So he challenged the tortoise to another race.


The tortoise agreed. This time, the hare went
all out and ran without stopping from start to
finish. He won by several miles.
4

The moral of the story- FAST AND


CONSISTENT WILL ALWAYS BEAT THE
SLOW AND STEADY. Its good to be slow and
steady; but its better to be fast and reliable.

The story doesn’t end here. The tortoise


did some thinking and realized that there was
no way he could beat the hare in its current
format. He thought for a while , and then
challenged the hare to another race, but on a
slightly different route. The hare agreed.
5

They started off. In keeping with his self made


commitment to be consistently fast, the hare
took off and ran to top speed-------- until he
came to a broad river.

The finishing line was a couple of kilometers on


the other side of the river. The hare sat there
wondering what to do. In the meantime the
tortoise trundled along, got into the river, swam
to the opposite bank, continued walking and
finished the race.
The moral of the story- FIRST
IDENTIFY YOUR CORE COMPETENCY AND
THEN CHANGE THE PLAYING FIELD TO
SUIT YOUR CORE COMPETENCY. Working to
your strengths will not only get you noticed, but
will also create opportunities for growth and
advancements.
6

The story still hasn’t ended. The hare and the


tortoise, by this time, had become pretty good
friends and they did some thinking together.
Both realized that the last race could have
been run much better. So they decided to do
the last race again, but to run as a TEAM this
time. They started off, and this time the hare
carried the tortoise till the river bank. There,
the tortoise took over and swam across with
the hare on his back. On the opposite bank, the
hare again carried the tortoise and they
reached the finishing line together. They both
felt a greater sense of satisfaction than they
had felt earlier.
The moral of the story-
IT IS GOOD TO BE
INDIVIDUALLY BRILLIANT AND TO HAVE
STRONG CORE COMPETENCIES; BUT
UNLESS YOU ARE ABLE TO WORK IN A
TEAM AND HARNESS EACH OTHERS CORE
COMPETENCIES, YOU’LL ALWAYS PERFORM
BELOW PAR BECAUSE THERE WILL ALWAYS
BE SITUATIONS AT WHICH YOU’LL DO
POORLY AND SOMEONE ELSE DOES WELL.

Important lessons to be learnt………


7

o Fast and consistent will always beat


slow and steady.
o Work to your competencies.
o Pooling resources and working as a
team will always beat individual
performers.
o Newer give up when faced with failure.
o Compete against the situation not
against the rival.

The above extract from the article in THE


HINDU BUSINESS LINE,SEPTEMBER 23,2002,
beautifully illustrates the importance of team
work in organizations. Building a team is
essential to the attainment of corporate
excellence.

DEFINITIONS:
Greenberg and Baron defines a team as ‘a
group whose members have complementary
skills and are committed to a common purpose
or a set of performance goals for which they
hold themselves mutually accountable’

Stephen Robbins describes a work team as ‘a


group whose individual efforts results in a
8

performance that is greater than the sum of


those individual inputs’

IMPORTANT
CHARACHTERISTICS OF A
TEAM:
1. SMALL NUMBER: A team consists of few
people as the interaction and influence
processes needed for the team to function
can occur only when the number is small.

2. MIX OF SKILLS: A team includes people


with a mix of skills appropriate to the task
to be done.

3. COMMON PURPOSE OR GOAL: A team


comes together to take action to pursue a
goal. The purpose becomes the focus of the
team, which makes all decisions in pursuit
of the goal.

4. MUTUALLY ACCOUNTABLE: Mutually


accountable is a kind of promise that
members make to each other to do
everything possible to achieve their goals,
9

and it requires commitement and trust of


all members.

TYPES OF TEAMS

There are many different kinds of teams .


Teams differ from each other on the
following four dimensions :

I] Purpose or mission : teams differ from


each other with regard to their purpose or
mission .

Some teams are mainly concerned with the


work done in the organization such as
developing new products , providing services
to the customers and so on . Such teams are
known as “work teams” . Their focus is on
10

optimal utilization of organizational


resources in order to yield the best possible
results .

Some teams on the other hand are


concerned with ways of improving quality ,
efficiency , and the work environment . Such
teams are referred to as problem solving
teams or improvement teams . Their mission
is to increase the effectiveness of the
processes that are used by the
organization.

A problem solving team usually consists of


eight to ten employees and supervisors
who meet regularly to discuss quality
problems , investigate causes of the
problems . recommend solutions , and take
corrective actions . members of the team
share ideas and offer suggestions on how
work processes and methods can be
improved .

II] Time : teams differ with regard to their


period of existence . Some teams are
established for a specific project and for a
specific time only . They are disbanded once
the job is done. teams of such kinds are
known as temporary teams .
11

A permanent team , on the other hand , has


an infinite existence and remains intact as
long as the organization exists . For example
, teams focusing on customer service exist
permanently in the organization .

III] Degree of autonomy : The amount of


operational autonomy or freedom that
teams have is another feature that
distinguishes one team from another .

Teams with little autonomy are referred to


as work groups . In teams , the leader
makes all the decisions on behalf of group
members who in turn follow the leader’s
orders . Such teams are becoming
increasingly less popular in organizations
today.

Self-managed work teams are becoming


more popular . These teams have high level
of autonomy at work . In self-managed work
teams , team members are permitted to
make key decisions about how their work is
done .

Self-managing teams are natural work


groups that are given a large degree of
decision-making autonomy ; they are
expected to control their behavior n results
.
12

A self-managing team usually consists of


small number of employees , often around
ten , who take on duties that used to be
performed by their supervisors . Their task
includes making work assignments , deciding
on the pace of work , determining how
quality is to be assessed , and even who
joins the team .

IV] Authority structure : Teams differ with


regard to their organizational functions . In
some teams , people operate within area
only and do not move away from their
area of expertise . Such teams are known
as “intact teams”.

In contrast , cross-functional teams have


employees from about the same level but
from different work areas , who come
together to accomplish specialty areas with
the organization .

Cross-functional teams represent a effective


way of bringing people from across the
organization together to cooperate with
each other on diverse tasks needed to
complete large projects .
13

CREATING TEAMS

A sound team requires not just the right


combination of skilled people but also
individuals who are willing to work together
with others as team . Considerable
managerial skills and hard work are need
to develop effective teams .
14

A model developed by J.R. Hackman provides


some useful guidelines as to how to design
the work effectively . According to this
model , the process of developing a team
involves four stages :

(i) Prework : The first and most


important step of team building is to
determine whether there is a
necessity for a team to be created .
The manager has to decide whether
the subordinates can do the work
individually or whether a team would
be more beneficial . He has to
determine whether creating a team
will result in the work getting done in
more creative and insightful ways .

Before creating a team a manger should


decide on

(a)The work that needs to be done


(b)The objective of the team
(c)The composition if the team – the skills
needed to do the job
(d)The authority of the team would have –
would it be working merely as n
advisory to the manager or whether it
would have full responsibility and
authority in carrying out the task .
15

(ii) Create performance conditions :


Once the manager has decided to
create the team , the next step is to
ensure that the team has the proper
conditions to carry out its work . The
team must be provided with necessary
resources and support to ensure the
success .

Resources include material resources


(such as money , equipments) as well
as human resources (a proper mix of
skilled people) . The team is likely to
fail in the absence of the right
conditions .

(iii) Form and built the team : There are


three things that a manager can do in order
to help the team to get off to a good start
:

(a) Boundaries : The manager should make


it very clear as to who is a member of
the team and who is not . If this is not
made clear then the members get
confused and experience frustration .

(b) Mission acceptance : The manager


must ensure that all the team members
16

are committed to the team’s purpose and


mission . Lack of acceptance of the team’s
mission by its members will result in
certain failure .

(b) Clarifyresponsibilities : It is very


important to let the team know what
exactly is expected of them . What is
their area of responsibility and what
they are supposed to do . Ambiguity of
any kind should be avoided .

(iv) Provide ongoing assistance : The


manager should provide whatever support
and assistance the team needs . Although
he need not directly intervene in its
routine functioning , he can support the
team by removing any obstacles that the
team encounters such as replacing
uncooperative members , ensuring regular
supply of material resources and so on .
Such ongoing assistance will help the
team to perform even better .

BENEFITS OF TEAM BUILDING


A Team–wise team building event will be is
great fun however they have been developed
with several aims in mind:
17

Working relationships will be developed -


People have to work together and by
doing so colleagues will develop more effective
working relationships with team members who
are new to the team and with team members
who have been part of the team for some time.

Shared positive experience -


The whole day is very memorable, team
members will be talking about it for the rest of
the year. As such colleagues will share a
positive and memorable experience which
further develops bonds.

Strengths and talents -


Everyone gets fully involved in the day and
their are lots of different roles so team workers
will see their colleagues in a whole new light
and will have a greater understanding of their
strengths and talents.

Teamwork -
Everything during the team building day
clearly requires teamwork and as such team
members will leave with a greater awareness
of how teams work and how to make them
18

work better.

NEED FOR TEAM BUILDING

Modern society and culture


continues to become more fluid and dynamic.
Factors contributing to this include the
communications revolution, the global market
and the ever-increasing specialization and
division of labor. The net effect is that
individuals are now required to work with many
different groups of people in their professional
as well as personal lives. Joining a new group
and immediately being expected to get along
with them is somewhat unnatural. People have
developed methods to help people adapt to the
new requirements. All kinds of companies face
the same difficulties. As yet there is no
generally agreed solution to the problem - it
may not even be possible given the thousands
of years of cultural evolution that brought us to
our present behavior patterns.
19

TEAM BUILDING INGREDEINTS

Ingredients seen as important to the


successful set-up and launch of such team
efforts include:

• Selection of participants
• Establishing goals
• Allocation of roles within the team
• Harmonizing personality types
• Training on how to work together
• Support within the team
20

• Making effective use of resources


• Communication between team
members and leaders
There have been no empirical studies that have
been tested in any of the assumptions made by
the following group theorists.

Selection of participants -
The first important ingredient for team building
is selecting of participants to be in the activity.
The team leader usually looks for specific
things in his or her members in order to ensure
success in the project. It is very important to
have members that have confidence and are
able to build trust among the other
participants. A participant must also break out
of his or her shell and become a leader. Most
importantly, the participant must have a
positive attitude at all times Sometimes it is
helpful to have an assessment each member
has to fill out at the end of a team building
experience to help in selecting participants in
the future. The authors of When Teams Work
Best collected 15,000 assessments that team
members had to fill out about their fellow
21

teammates. In the assessment there were only


two questions asked:
(1) What strengths does this person bring to
the team?
(2) What might this individual do to contribute
more effectively to the team’s success?
The assessment revealed six factors to help
distinguish between the effective and
ineffective team members. The factors fell into
two groups: working knowledge and teamwork.
“Working knowledge consists of two factors:
experience and problem-solving ability.
Teamwork consists of four factors: openness,
supportiveness, action orientation, and
personal style”
If each member has these qualities, the
outcome of the team building activity will likely
be successful.
Establishing goals within the team is essential
in team building. It is important and easy for
the team leader to establish goals early so the
members understand their purpose for
participating. If the goals are clarified, the
participants are motivated to excel in the
activities and develop trust among their leader
. Goals give the team direction and provide a
feeling of value and importance. It is very
22

important for a leader to make sure the team


knows how the work will be done and how they
will accomplish their tasks. Without goals, the
team has nothing to strive for, and many
members may lose motivation. Keeping the
goal simple and achievable will be very
beneficial to the team in the end.

Balancing skill sets –

When creating a team building activity, it is


important to have balanced skill sets. One way
to achieve this is by having experts in different
fields. If some members provide their technical
skills, and other members provide their
23

theoretical skills, the outcome of the project will


likely be successful. For example, individuals
that are knowledgeable about the course
materials are confused about the technology
part of it. On the other hand, individuals may
feel that the technical side of the problem is
more comprehensible than the theoretical side
of it. By combining both types’ strengths, the
team can come up with a solution that benefits
everyone. Balancing skill sets can be one of the
most challenging things to achieve, but it is
very important to do to ensure the success of
ones’ team .
24

Allocation of roles within the team –

Assigning roles to team members help them to


know their place on the team. Each member
should be assigned a role that is clearly defined
and relates to his or her personality.
Advantages of defining roles among team
members are that it makes assignments more
straightforward, helps to understand the
decision-making process, and assures the task
will be completed. In most undergraduate
projects there are three roles: project leader,
chief architect, and documentation leader. It is
important to clarify each of these roles at the
25

very first meeting so members know exactly


what they have to do. Making a list of
everyone’s skill sets, preference, work
experience, courses taken, and interests would
help in assigning the roles. From this list it
should be determined who is best suited for
what role. If there is conflict in the process,
team members can always share the
responsibilities. Otherwise the leader can
perform a quick lottery to decide who gets what
role. However, participants may not have an
interest in the role that they were unwillingly
assigned to. A serious problem that may occur
is that a specific role may have too little or too
much work, which may cause resentment
between the members. Productivity may also
be lost. A team must always be ready to adjust
to their new roles and be prepared if assigned
to a new one. Members must be willing to move
beyond their roles and help others in order to
practice good teamwork and to get the job
done .
Harmonizing personality –
26

The personality of a team leader plays a big


factor on how the team performs. A leader
must understand the kind of personality they
need to have in order to gain the respect from
his or her members. Many studies have been
made to see if personality affects working
environments. For example, V.J. Bentz (1985)
conducted a study of ineffective managers at
the department store Sears. In his studies he
found that almost all of the managers had a
“personality defect” of some sort. Lesley and
Van Velsor (1996) also conducted studies that
ultimately found four personality traits of
ineffective managers. The four traits were poor
interpersonal skills (being insensitive, arrogant,
cold, aloof, overly ambitious), unable to get
work done (betraying trust, not following
27

through, overly ambitious), unable to build a


team, and unable to make the transition after
promotion. The personality traits that these
managers portrayed were proven to negatively
affect the working environment. It is imperative
for leaders to have a positive and effective
personality to gain respect among their
organization and members.
Training on how to work together –

A team must know how to work together in


order to be productive and successful. If a team
can work together, they will be able to raise
and resolve issues that are standing in the way
of accomplishing a goal . Working together may
not come easy at first, but with proper training
the team will be able to adapt quickly. The
training may include the instruction on how to
communicate better, manage conflict, or
understand the skills and talents that everyone
brings to the table. A full assessment of the
team’s need is recommended before the
28

training. To encourage team members to work


together, many companies provide workshops
in communication skills, meetings
management, listening, assertiveness, conflict
resolution, goal setting, and other topics that
help in being an effective team player .If people
are working together effectively rather than
working by themselves, a lot more work will be
accomplished.

Support within the team –

Another important ingredient for team building


is supportiveness. Supportiveness is the
aspiration to help others succeed (LaFasto 14).
“Someone who shows supportiveness is
dedicated to the team’s success and wants
what’s best for the team, works behind the
29

scenes to aid the team, willing to pitch in


whenever necessary, always willing to help out,
willing to take on more responsibility, very easy
to work with, and listens well to others’ ideas”.
Recently, M. West, author of Effective
Teamwork, introduced a comprehensive model
of team support. In the model he concluded
that team support is a multidimensional
concept that includes four types. The four types
are emotional support, informational support,
instrumental support, and appraisal support.
Someone who provides a shoulder to cry on,
encouraging words, and is sympathetic of
others’ pain is said to be a team emotional
support. A person that provides team
informational support exchanges necessary
information about a certain thing to their peers.
The person who is actually “doing the support”
provides team instrumental support. The last
type is appraisal support. This type is the help
individual team members can provide to aid in
making sense of a particular problem Team
building will be successful if the team members
can cover each of these types of team support.
Making effective use of resources –
30

Effectively using resources is essential in the


success of team building. In the business-world
companies are very serious on how they use
their resources. Many companies use team
techniques in systems development to
effectively use their resources .“During group
sessions, non-technical end users and
information systems staff meet on a common
ground to hammer out systems solutions that
truly meet the needs of everyone---especially
the needs of end-user management” .To ensure
system requirements are on target, companies
like Cigna Company in Philadelphia, CNA
Insurance Company in Dearborn, Michigan, and
Chase Manhattan Bank in New York are all
using group design techniques. All of these
companies believe in the same thing: effective
goal setting, listening, facilitation skills,
consensus building, and a willingness to
communicate. These team techniques in
systems development not only make effective
use of resources, but they also result in
31

measurable benefits .Resources are essential to


team building and they must be used wisely
and efficiently.
Communication between team members
and leaders –

When Teams Work Best, “the most important


contribution a team leader can make is to
ensure a climate that enables team members
to speak up and address the real issues
preventing the goal from being achieved.” A
leader with good communication skills must be
able to speak the truth and deal with problems
openly. Their goal should be to promote
listening, to understand different viewpoints,
and to work toward a resolution .. It is
important for a team leader to make team
32

members feel comfortable enough to express


their needs and their wants. Members want to
feel that they know what is going on at all time
and are informed about things such as plans,
priorities, and progress the group is making
.Some ways to communicate is by email, online
messengers, telephone, or face-to-face
methods. The most important part of
communication is not so much the tools you
choose, but the dedication by each member of
the team to use the chosen tools regularly.
33

TEAM BUILDING IN
ORGANISATIONAL DEVELOPMENT

The term 'team building' can refer generally to the


selection and motivation of teams, or more
specifically to group self-assessment in the theory
and practice of organizational development.

When a team in an organizational development


context embarks upon a process of self-assessment
in order to gauge its own effectiveness and thereby
improve performance, it can be argued that it is
engaging in team building, although this may be
considered a narrow definition.
34

To assess itself, a team seeks feedback to find


out both:

• its current strengths as a team


• its current weaknesses

To improve its current performance, a team uses the


feedback from the team assessment in order to:

• identify any gap between the desired state and


the actual state
• design a gap-closure strategy

As teams grow larger, the skills and methods


managers must use to create or maintain a spirit of
teamwork change. The intimacy of a small group is
lost, and the opportunity for misinformation and
disruptive rumors grows. Managers find that
communication methods that once worked well are
impractical with so many people to lead. In particular,
leaders encounter difficulties based on Daglow's Law
of Team Dynamics: "Small teams are informed. Big
teams infer."

DEVELOPING TEAM PLAYERS


35

A team consists of different individuals who


come from different environment and whose
tastes, personalities, thinking, beliefs, skills
and
Attitudes are different. In order to develop
effective teams, it is
extremely important to overcome all these
individual differences and
develop them in to team players. Developing
team players is extremely challenging in
organizations that have always valued
individual achievement and have employees
with a highly individualistic national culture.
On the other hand, organizations that have
been built around teams and have employees
with collectivist values find it much easier to
develop teams.
Managers need to pay close
attention to the following elements
while trying to turn individuals into team
players:
(1) Selection: Care should be taken while
hiring team members, The
manager must ensure that the members
have the interpersonal skills and
satisfy the technical requirements to carry
out the job. They should be
able to fulfill their team roles.
36

(2) Training: Even if an employee does not


have the required skills to
be a effective team player, he can be trained
for the same. Trainers
are called to conduct workshops to help
employees acquire and improve
various skills such as problem - solving,
communication, negotiation,
conflict management, and other practical
skills required to work in teams.
Experts create situation that results from
teamwork.
However, it must be remembered that some
employees resist being team
players and may not be trainable. Such
people should not be selected in
The first place and if already present should
be transferred elsewhere
in the organization.
(3) Rewards: The reward system should be
redesigned to encourage
employees to work as team players. Rewards
must encourage cooperative rather
than competitive behavior. However
individual contribution should not
be ignored altogether. The rewards should
strike a fine balance between
individual performance and team
performance. Behaviors such as training new
employees, resolving team conflicts, sharing
37

information about team mates should be


encouraged and rewarded.
Besides the external rewards, teamwork has
its own intrinsic rewards in the form of
opportunities for developing friendship,
helping teammates, being a member of a
successful team and the satisfaction of
personal development.
38

INTERVIEWING A TRAINING
EXECUTIVE….
[ Ms . RIBA ABHIRAJ – WIPRO BPO ]

Q 1] WHAT ACCORDING TO YOU IS THE


MOST IMPORTANT ELEMENT IN TEAM
BUILDING ??

According to me its the team leader . All team


leaders do not prove to be successful team
leaders . A team leader having good
leadership qualities and suitable motivating
techniques can build a successful team .

Q 2 ] HOW DO U MOTIVATE YOUR TEAM


MEMBERS TO WORK AS A TEAM ??

Motivating task is best achieved by creating


a healthy competitive environment . Also by
appreciating their work by gifting the top
scorers . I also have one-on-one sessions
39

with the team members ( personal


interaction).

Q 3 ] WHAT PROBLEMS DO YOU FACE IN


HANDLING A TEAM AND HOW DO U
HANDLE THEM ??

While dealing with the team members


sometimes we come across very arrogant
and stubborn kind of team members who
are not very receptive and need logical
reasons to perform in the manner you want
them to perform , so one has to explain
every aspect and convince them to work as
per the requirements . Similarly there are
some sensitive team members and here ,
one needs to be very careful while
interacting with them during the feedback
sessions . Also the personal differences of
the team members among them selves
effect the performance of the team as a
whole . So to overcome this we arrange
team outings where the team members get
to know each other well and develop some
bond with each other .

Q 4] DO YOU THINK TEAMS HAVE


GREATER POTENTIAL OF ACHIEVING A
GOAL THEN JUST AN INDIVIDUAL ??
40

Of course I’ll go with the team . As an


individual one will always come across some
limitation at some point of time i.e. at some
stage or level . But if your working as team
all limitations can be overcome . No wonder
an efficient individual will perform really
well , but not forget what will be the degree
of performance if we have group of
efficient individuals working together . We
get to know different aspects of the same
issue because we come across different
point of views of different people . And
accordingly we can handle different
situations effectively .
Thus , teams are more viable alternative .

Q 5 ] WHAT DO YOU FEEL IS THERE


ANY DIFFERENCE BETWEEN A “GROUP”
AND A “TEAM” ??

Groups can be formal and informal but


teams are always a formal affair . In a
group , the entire group is not made
responsible in case a group member does
41

not perform well . But in a team , the


entire team is held responsible . In a team
if one member is unable to perform his
task his collogue takes over and completes
it whereas in the group this is not
observed . These are the major differences
that will be noticed between “teams” and
“groups” .