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Teamwork, Team Dynamics and Communication Essay

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Updated: Oct 4th, 2021

Introduction

In the present day world, “teamwork” or “team dynamics” are common in almost all walks of life. It is not unusual to see in schools and colleges that students working in teams to do a project; sports; any other activity, people working in teams in organizations to accomplish certain goals, people with similar interests in the society work together for a common goal, and family members attempt together for the achievement of the common good of the family. The benefits of teamwork in an organizational context are manifold and it is rightly stated in the statement. “Teams in the workplace are perhaps the most powerful organizational concept since the Roman Legions.” (Lee, 2001).

The most significant outcome of teamwork is the synergy effect. This implies that the result of teamwork is greater than that of the sum of the independent works of those who form the team. Besides that, superior motivation, enhanced coordination, decisions by consensus, improved problem solving, quick and rational decision making are other benefits of teamwork.

Team dynamics is the study of groups and also the interrelationship involved in the activity. A group refers to two or more individuals connected together to one another by certain relationships, social, organizational, or family. A group is different from an aggregate of people. A group exists when two or more are aware of one another or when they are interrelated in one or the other. But, an aggregate of persons is only a collection, population, or class. The most notable thing in a team is that the team members are not only interactive but dynamic as well. It is dynamic in the sense that the relationship between the members of the group is continuously changing and adjusting. The individuals in teamwork together in a coordinated atmosphere so that they can interact and influence one another and develop a number of dynamics like development, social influence, effects on behavior, and many more.

The following table compares and contrasts an employee’s role as a team member and that of an individual in the workplace. ((n.d.), Group dynamics and communication: Understand the importance of working in a team environment).

Team Member Individual Member
Group problem-solving Individual assignments
Draws upon diverse
experiences
Draws upon one person’s experiences
Skills of many people Skills of one person
Creativity of many Creativity of one
Cross-functional involvement On person’s job
Customer supplier relationship Supervisor-employee relationship
Shred goals Individual tasks/ job

However, the success or otherwise of group dynamics is determined by many factors such as the large context of a country and its geographic features, the organization in which the group operates, the nature of the team as a whole, and the mix of individuals within the team. The team needs to have a balance between the roles that individuals play. The dynamics within the team is determined by certain forces and these are described below:

Extrinsic Factors

Every organization’s performance is influenced by certain external factors like legal, technological, socio-cultural, and political circumstances in which the organization functions. Naturally, these forces will have implications for the team and its efforts. Social rewards and sanctions of the group, social identity, future interdependence of the group upon individuals, etc are some of the external forces. Apart from that, there are certain individual factors that affect the performance of the team. The most common is a quest for individual identity, the desire to achieve, the member role differences, team size, and status attainment, and member commitment.

Team Communication

Communication commonly refers to the exchange of messages from one point to another. It takes several forms like verbal, non-verbal, and so on and so forth. The messages transferred may be facts, ideas, emotions, opinions, etc. However, for communication to be effective, in whatever forms, the message passed by the sender to the recipient must be perceived by the latter in the same way as intended by the former. Team communication is more complex and challenging when compared to personal communication. The very existence of a team largely depends upon effective communication. Indeed, the interaction potential of group communication is quite high, but the difficulty of gaining mutual meaning and understanding is significantly high.

Benefits of Team communication

  1. Quick communication
  2. Equal exposure to everybody
  3. Common sharing of viewpoints, experiences, and expertise
  4. Innovation, creativity, and quick problem solving
  5. A cooperative atmosphere (Kermis, 2001).

Despite there are many advantages to group communication, effective communication among the group members is not possible always because of some hindrances called barriers.

  1. Physical Barriers
  2. Cultural barriers
  3. Perceptual barriers
  4. Emotional barriers
  5. Language barriers
  6. Gender barriers ((n.d.), Garner).

References

Garner, Eric. (n.d.). Seven barriers to great communication. Hodu.com: Your Gateway to Better Communication Skills. 2008. Web.

Group dynamics and communication: Understand importance of working in a team environment. (n.d.). 2. 2008. Web.

Kermis, Michael. (2001). Mine health and safety management. 2008. Web.

Lee, Quarterman. (2001). . Kansas City Business Journal. 2008. Web.

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IvyPanda. 2021. "Teamwork, Team Dynamics and Communication." October 4, 2021. https://ivypanda.com/essays/teamwork-team-dynamics-and-communication/.

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