FUNCTIONAL AND CROSS-FUNCTIONAL TEAMS
One of the greatest challenges of working in teams is organising it such that both the team leader and the team members work on developing a perception of "we" instead of "I". That is, seeing individual relations as the smallest unit in the team.
Team development can contribute to:
Securing more time for key tasks
Improving the team's ability to give and receive feedback
Utilising the team's knowledge and competencies to achieve better results and improve well-being
Securing alignment and collaboration with key stakeholders.
Evolving from a frustrated group to a high-performing team
At Rex I Albright we employ the recognized Lencioni Trust Pyramid in our work with teams. The Lencioni Trust Pyramid was developed and published by Patrick Lencioni in his book ‘The Five Dysfunctions of a Team’ (2002) and divides team behavior into five layers, starting at the bottom of the model.
HOW DOES THE PROGRAMME WORK?
The programme usually takes the form of a full-day workshop. During this workshop we, on the basis of in-depth insights and self-insights, work with the team's ability to collaborate and complement each other with the intention of improving the team's well-being, efficiency and ability to create results. Additionally, we offer coaching and sparring programmes tailored to individual team members or parts of the team.
The programme is suitable for project teams, functional and cross-functional teams as well as self-managing and matrix teams:
Project teams - with the objective of ensuring a strong alignment, cooperation and progress in the team as well as in the team's relation to stakeholders. Additionally, to enable an improvement of the well-being and professional task completion in the project team.
Functional teams - with the objective of ensuring that the permanent team - e.g. a specific division/department - is thriving and is working toward common goals, with a joint sense of direction under clearly defined frameworks and priorities. Additionally, to ensure that different competencies and perspectives are valued and utilised.
Cross-functional teams - with the objective of ensuring that individual team members from different divisions/departments of the organisation are thriving and are working toward a common goal. Additionally, to foster knowledge sharing and to ensure that rules, resource allocation, frameworks, roles, responsibilities and expectations are clearly defined and coordinated.
Self-managed teams - with the objective of ensuring that individual teams members are working toward a common goal despite individual goals differing between them. Additionally, with the intent of ensuring the team's well-being, to foster knowledge sharing and to ensure that rules, resource allocation, frameworks, roles, responsibilities and expectations are clearly defined and coordinated.
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CONFLICTS WITHIN THE TEAM
Conflicts in a team are not uncommon. We often see misunderstandings, disagreements, fights over professional or personal perspectives or other conflicts arise in teams. Such conflicts should be handled immediately so they do not derail the team's work, as the ability to collaborate as well as a good social environment are crucial for the team's well-being and its ability to create results.
It is no easy task for team leader's to ensure that their own team or their employees' teams are well-functioning and high-performing:
The framework and goals must be well-defined and the direction must be clear.
The different perspectives and competencies in the team should be recognised and utilised.
Agreements regarding task assignments must be in place, in order to avoid conflicts about status and roles, which divert focus from the task.
There must be a common understan-ding and agreement of what type of communication and behaviour is acceptable in the team - both internally and externally.
The team must learn how to give and receive constructive feedback, which focuses on the goals and tasks at hand.
THE MANAGEMENT AS A TEAM
A team has one or more common goals or common tasks, which differ from the sum of each individual member's goals or tasks (Bang et al, 2015)
Bang and colleagues thus conclude that for the management team to be a team, it must have goals, which the team members are collectively responsible for achieving. Alternatively, the team must have tasks that require the collaboration of team members, in order to be completed.
When determining whether or not a specific management team is a team we must ask the following question: What is the management team responsible for producing? With this we refer to responsibilities that are beyond what individual members are responsible for.
At the end of the day, what makes the management team a true team is that the individual members depend on each other in order to reach the group's goals. This is the core of the management team.