Team Building for Better Performance

Overview

Building and maintaining high morale within a team is crucial. The need for flawless execution of the strategy is critical to any business. One way to guarantee performance is to have a team that respects each other, sees the interdependencies between each other and sees the part they play in the success of the business.

This is not always easy to achieve. There may be cultural, age and gender issues, or even petty jealousies within the team that are having a detrimental impact on the individuals, team, or department.

Well designed team building can help to identify the stumbling blocks with a team, expose these and deal with them in a sensitive way that leaves the team ready to move from where they are to a more positive place.

Curran Associates has a proven track record of achieving the above. It is achieved by focusing on the following things:

  • Raising self awareness of team members within the team
  • Illustrating the way teams are formed and how they can improve
  • Looking at the roles people currently play, versus the role they could play with the right mindset
  • Emphasising the importance of communication
  • Brainstorming how they will work more effectively together moving forward
  • Playing management games together that offer opportunities for success and personal reflection
  • Having fun together! – like families – teams that play together stay together

You can achieve all of this without humiliating people thus leaving the door open for them to make individual and collective change.

  • If you are unsure of the benefits, read the testimonials below.
  • If you are unsure if your team needs it, ask them!
  • If you want to check to see where you currently are, try our checklist below – this will help you establish where you currently are and where you need to get to.

top

Testimonials

Many thanks for our course this weekend.

My whole team this morning came in to THANK me for making them work on a weekend (not in those words, but you know what I mean) and I would like to thank you for an excellent event, all objectives achieved, and more.

Peter Sianchuk, VP World-wide Support, Serena

Hi John,

Just wanted to say thanks again for yesterday. It was a really useful day with some quite scarily accurate insights; I’ll definitely pursue the communication types and give thought to how effectively I’m communicating with the different types in my team.

Thanks.

Steve Warrington
Head of Projects
LexisNexis UK Practice Management

John was, as always, a superb facilitator and team builder.

Sally Hanson, Head of Marketing, MF

Thank you John, your job was, as always, well done and very helpful for the entire Italian team.

I think we reached at least two goals: building a better team relationship and knowing ourselves and each other better.

I do think the sales and the marketing team will take advantage from your course and the benefits will be directly reflected in revenue increase.

Best regards,

Maurizio Massimi
Italian Sales, Country Manager, Micro Focus

John, just wanted to drop you a quick line to thank you for your time yesterday. I very much enjoyed the day and initial feedback from the team is that they enjoyed it and have taken away new skills around team work and communication which was our aim.

Cheers,
Marcus

Marcus Hutchinson BSc (hons)
Development Manager
LexisNexis Enterprise Solutions

Hi John,

Just a quick e-mail to say how enjoyable, and enlightening, I found the Development Team Building event you presented in Leeds yesterday.

Such events, although organised with the best of intentions by the management team, can sometimes leave the Team feeling less together than ever. I thought yours was pitched at exactly the right level and everyone remained focused and interested for the duration of the day.

Hopefully everyone else got as much out of it as I did.

Best regards
Craig

Craig Brown
Analyst Programmer
LexisNexis Enterprise Solutions

top

Checklist

Teams go through different stages of working together. Some teams move forward as they work more closely together, or have a change of leader. Some team’s performance goes backwards for precisely the same reason. You can intervene and improve everybody’s desire to do their job to the best of their ability.

Now try our checklist. Where does your team sit?

Forming

When a group first comes together, individual members are on the whole guarded in their approach to each other.

  • Grumbling about immediate conditions
  • Intellectualising about irrelevant issues
  • Uncommitted attempts to structure the group
  • Defensive about individual skills
  • Forced politeness
  • Lots of talk, little listening
  • Emotions bottled up
  • Suspicion/wall building
  • Personal matters rarely or never discussed

Storming:

As individual within the group overcome their initial reticence and become increasingly conscious of its goals, a degree of conflict concerning roles, methods and processes may become evident.

  • Defensive, competition, jealousy
  • Experimental hostility and aggressiveness
  • Ambivalence towards the leader
  • Competition for key roles
  • Direct and explosive conflict
  • Arguments over trivial issues
  • Animosities begin to be brought out and dealt with
  • Some members may leave the team

Norming:

The team begins to take responsibility for itself; the members adopt an attitude of give and take. It moves from counter-dependency – “What shall we do next?” to interdependency – “Let’s work on this together”

  • People listen to each other more
  • Roles and responsibilities are negotiated
  • Decisions are increasingly made by consensus
  • Greater social involvement of group members
  • More humour between team members
  • Greater understanding of individual needs within the group
  • Firmer relationships between team members

Performing:

The team has reached maturity; much of the leadership role is shared. Everyone knows his or her role value and is familiar with the formal and informal mechanisms of the team.

  • Team comfortable in each other’s company
  • Many team functions seem to happen without verbal or written communication
  • High degree of trust between members
  • All members willing to take on aspects of the leadership function

Managers need to create an environment in which new teams can progress quickly and easily from one stage to the next.

The ability to give clear direction and address motivational issues will be critical to this process.

top