Once you have a team in place, you’re ready to begin developing it into a cohesive and cohesive unit.
To ensure that your team-building activities produce the results you want, you will need to understand the psychological aspects of team-building itself. You now understand why people have psychological needs that can be met through teamwork and understand the benefits of teamwork to the overall organization. Now you must use this knowledge to help you generate a plan for successful team building based not only on your team and organizational goals but also on the psychology of your team members individually and as a collective group.
When it comes to determining how you want to structure your team in order to maximize the positive effects of your team-building efforts, you need to realize that not all teams are created equal, or rather the same. Some teams operate at maximum potential when they are small, while others require larger numbers based on the psychological elements management is trying to establish. Generally speaking, if you want a team made up of people who work to solve problems, generate new ideas, troubleshoot problems, or perform other mentally stimulating tasks, you’ll probably want to work with a smaller team.
When teams are large, the variety of ideas and solutions presented can quickly become overwhelming for everyone involved. It can also very quickly lead to scenarios such as groupthink, where the majority of group members begin to process information and have the same opinions just because of the group dynamic. When this happens, not only is there a risk that bad ideas will be accepted and good ideas stifled but there is also a serious risk of damaging the morale of team members who are not so easily swayed and whose suggestions are ignored or ignored by the others. While the notion that two chapters are better than one is often true, it is not always the case that ten chapters are better than two.
If the team you’re building will primarily perform tasks that require little independent judgment or complex concepts, a large team may be just right. For example, foot soldiers are expected and trained to follow the orders of their superior officers. Reference: “Training of HR managers in the field of human resources“, https://medfd.org/training-of-hr-managers-in-the-field-of-human-resources/ They are not expected to provide insight or full complex assessments, but they still work as a cohesive team. Part of the reason this formation works is because of the size of the unit. Getting more people involved helps build confidence in the team’s ability to accomplish its goals or mission. There is also a sense of shared expertise, partly stemming from the fact that everyone is working toward a common goal that absolutely requires each of them to do their job perfectly without having a voice in determining how the job should be done.
It may sound wrong, but the reality is that when you want teams to execute orders rather than make them, you want to foster a sense of groupthink or collective acceptance of the team’s goals and the strategies used to achieve those goals. History has shown us this time and time again. , that the most effective way to win a war is to have large numbers of people willing to fight and die with minimal explanation or input regarding their government or group’s goals as long as they are committed to the team’s end goal and are bonded together as teammates.
But the size of your team isn’t the only psychological element to consider when it comes to team building. Diversity among team members can make a huge difference in whether a team is successful in its endeavors. It is important to begin this part of the discussion by first establishing that discrimination based on age, sex, religion, race, sexual preference, sexual identity, disability, etc. not refuted in any way. That said, the diversity of people who come together on your team around these issues will play a role in your team’s success or failure.
Consider again a group of infantry soldiers. The United States government has set an excellent example in these matters. Throughout its history, it has had racially segregated units, has not allowed women to serve, has not allowed homosexuals to serve, and now allows these groups to serve and serve together. Two hundred years ago, white men did not want to fight alongside blacks because they were considered inferior and therefore assumed to be a threat to the team’s safety.
Creating a collective group that didn’t feel safe because they were in the presence of someone of a different race undermined the sense of team that the government was working to build. The same scenario occurred when it came to women who served and the openly gay people who served; by opening the team to these groups of people, it was believed that the strength of the team would be tested when the sense of team was threatened by these additions. Those people, it turns out, were right. This disrupted the team structure. Initially, there were some negative consequences.
Over time, however, the team adjusted. Team members learned that the presence of these other people on their team did not pose a threat to their physical, mental, or emotional safety. The team also grew stronger as new people with new skills and perspectives were added to the mix. The team also became stronger as a whole by learning to recognize that shared experience and mission are stronger than other differences. By challenging the team in this way, it becomes even stronger, realizing that team members’ commitment to the team’s goals is even stronger than they previously believed and can override other factors.
Of course, this may not have happened 200 years ago. Getting the team to even allow for the possibility of building a stronger unit through diversity can’t always happen all at once and usually happens over time and through efforts on many different fronts. One of the most difficult decisions a team leader must make is assessing whether their team has the capacity to adjust as needed to enable a more diverse team. If a team has historically been limited to members who share the same religion, for example, integrating diversity may not mean suddenly recruiting so many people from other religions that the team is now half of the original religion and half of other religions. Instead, depending on the size of your team, a smaller percentage will usually allow the team to feel psychologically secure enough to tolerate this new change, which will then pave the way for more diversity.
It’s also worth noting that the diversity on your team should, when applicable, reflect your team’s goals. The board of directors of a nonprofit that serves homeless people should not be made up of only the wealthy. Even if the board is made up of a wide diversity in age, race, religion, etc. of the board members, it is not enough if no one on the board can relate to the needs of the people they are committed to serving. , To have psychologically defensible team building, the diversity present on your team must adequately match the diversity that may be inherent in your team goals.
Another aspect to consider when designing your team structure to maximize the psychological impact of your team building is to consider whether to include team leaders as part of the team versus the sole leader. Using the same example for the military, officers usually mingle socially with other officers, not with their own soldiers. This is believed to strengthen the bond between soldiers that keep them separate from officers.
Again, this works best in a team structure where team members are primarily expected to follow orders and depend on other group members for their safety. Nevertheless, this type of structure also requires a great deal of trust in the group leader, even though he or she reveals little information and does not connect emotionally with the group in the same way that group members do with each other. Therefore, any leader in this type of scenario must project enormous levels of confidence in their own abilities so that their subordinates continue to trust their leadership abilities.
Of course, in smaller groups, it is more common and often more appropriate for the team leader to still be part of the group, especially in certain ways. A good manager communicates with his team and helps lead the team to achieve its goals while promoting and encouraging the positive psychological effects of teamwork in each team member. This means giving team members some opportunity and encouragement to offer ideas, make suggestions, offer unique or different perspectives, etc. In a small team, team members tend to react very negatively to commands given to them without the opportunity to participate in decision-making for the team.
Unfortunately, many managers are hesitant to allow team members to make the kind of contributions that often lead to turnover and failure of the team to achieve its goals. In any setting where there are people with high levels of expertise, it is seriously unreasonable to expect them not to participate in the team’s decision-making process at all.
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