Management: High Performance Teams
Every organization requires high performing teams to succeed in their business. High Performance Teams (HPT’s) are a distinct class of team that have the skills to adjust easily in any rapidly fluctuating environment and these teams are considered an essential component in any organization. Understanding the necessary team requirements is the basic step towards success. Some ingredients that make a high performance teams are; the vision, being optimistic and self-directed, enjoying the work, defining proper roles of team members, working together as a team and helping the team members. As stated by Hanlan (2004), the most successful teams are principle-driven; they follow general guidelines that affect all their behaviors in the workplace.
Why do some manager’s fail miserably in achieving good results and some managers perform extremely well? The manager’s success depends on the team performance. Even though every team consists of a group of different people who have dependency factor on other team members to achieve a common goal, their work is produced by a combination of individual contributions. The goal achieved by collective effort of every team member is known as the best team. Defining the goals and acting as a leader are the main responsibilities of the manager. When the tasks are assigned to the team, the manager must be rationally prepared to accept the team’s approach in achieving the goals if they are within the morals, ethics, and legal standards of the organization. Motivation and appreciation play a vital role in the team’s success. Any work at the workplace that produces good results must be appreciated. Appreciation can be in the form of rewards, a pay-hike and bonus, paid vacation, family day out and so on. As mentioned by Yeatts, Hyten (1997), the organization must find the proper balance between rewarding individuals for their efforts and accomplishments and providing rewards for the group performance of the team or business unit.
A mutual support between the management and the teams is an essential aspect as both the parties are dependent on each other for success. Management provides the team with the required resources, goals and gratitude and in turn the team provides the results. The management will fail to achieve the goals when there is no proper communication with the team members, nor any adequate support and recognition for the efforts of the team. The managers will struggle to create an effective team that can produce the best results if the team members are unaware of the goals and roles, no proper planning on solving the difficult tasks or finding solutions that work, do not use effective decision making and conflict management strategies, open communication does not exist, and if the team members are not co-operative. The management may be in a process to create and develop new ways to help the teams to be more productive however they might not know what they are doing to build a high performing team.
Wheelan (2009) stated that high performance teams use feedback about team processes and productivity to make improvements in how they are functioning. Constructive and positive feedback always helps the members of HPT’s to improve on their skills. The high performing teams effectively use the time of each team member in the meetings, provide a fair chance for all team members to discuss on the task by encouraging participation, and are responsible to enrich the talents of the team members. These teams preemptively work in building positive and healthy relationships with each other; use effective listening techniques such as to the point questioning, rephrasing, interpreting and summarizing to get out ideas related to the goals. The work environment of the HPT’s is peaceful, at ease and informal, and they believe in fun at work. The team members shift the role of leadership depending on the conditions of the project. A manager who has a passion towards achieving success in life can create a HPT with his experience, knowledge and talent along with the never ending support of his like-minded team members.
Hanlan, Marc. (2004). High Performance Teams: How To Make Them Work. (Illustrated). Greenwood Publishing Group.
Yeatts, Dale E. Hyten, Cloyd . (1997) High-Performing Self-Managed Work Teams: A Comparison of Theory to Practice (5, illustrated). SAGE.
Wheelan, Susan.A. (2009). Creating Effective Teams: A Guide for Members and Leaders. (3rd Edition). SAGE.