Team Building In The Workplace

Human thinking is a dynamic and complex activity. When attempts are made to modify human thinking within an organizational setting, the outcome can be both undesirable and unforeseen. This situation is known as “policy resistance”. Management that is blind to its own assumptions or biases, and those of others, will be ineffective. The task of the manager is to facilitate team building and a common understanding of goals and practices among members of the organization. Otherwise, the varied perceptions of these members will alter organization-level sense making and performance.

To remedy such a situation, the manager is required to ensure these divorced perceptions are shared across the various hierarchies through discussion and communication. The term “learning organization” therefore represents an organization that shares individual assumptions and mental models to create new mental constructs, enhance collective sense making, create new knowledge, solve problems and adapt to a changing world. Teambuilding is essential in problem solving and also in welcoming the opportunity to handle complex problems encountered during the provision of services. During team building, communication plays a critical role in identifying the problem, generating collective goals, assessing options, and choosing and implementing a practical solution.

OBM techniques such as creating feedback, providing training and setting common goals are the building blocks to behavior-based approaches to teambuilding. Ideally, an OBM approach encourages employees to have “response generalization”, with every set of intervention multiplying compliance with the next. The following would be this most preferred intervention packages for team building:

  • i. Use of behavioral modifiers such as pledge cards
  • ii. Task clarification between team members
  • iii. Handoff communication protocol using prominent reminders, proper record-keeping, and passing information to other employees
  • iv. Weekly meeting between the team members to assess performance and set goals going forward
  • v. Providing feedback to employees on the extent of team function
  • vi. Education, training and discussion of proper procedures for conducting organization services and duties
  • vii. Peer-to-peer coaching on error-reduction
  • viii. Providing for anonymous error reporting
  • ix. Creating monthly corrective action plan with a close-call component

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