The increasing diversity of the workforce and dominant use of teams and groups has been a prevalent occurrence in organizational decision making and production processes. Formation of groups has become an essential entity of the modern organizations. In fact, groups are ubiquitous from the lowest to the highest levels of management and production. Typically a group is a collection of individuals who interact with each other to achieve a particular objective (Levi, 2015). The functions of a team in an organization have essential implication to its productivity and profitability. Consequently, for the groups where team members get along, there is a mutual desire to achieve leading to high performances. On the other hand, those teams characterized by extreme hostility or conflict their workforce remains demoralized. Communication, conflict management, and public speaking are among the substantial aspects of group dynamics that determine the success of teambuilding.
Effective and Ineffective Communication in Groups
Communication is an intense process in the development of a group culture and defines various aspects of a team such as leadership roles, morale, cohesiveness and joint productivity. For an organization to successfully coordinate its workforce, it need to have well-laid networks where employees in various levels can convey a message with minimal distortion from the sender to the receiver. However, communication barriers hinder appropriate coding, transmission or decoding of transmitted signals. They are various hurdles or obstacles arising in between the encoding and decoding of the message which leads to misinterpretations and misunderstanding between the communicating parties. Therefore, organizations invest a lot in improving communication skills of their teams as a way of enhancing individual personality, knowledge and robust networks (Levi, 2015). Effective communication is thus an art practiced by team members to strengthen coordination, teamwork, and achievement of goals within the organization. Also, effective communication reduces the error rate, improves understanding of work, and promotes better conflict management skills.
However, not every individual is born with decent communication skills, but one can learn with time through a transition in various stages of life. In the midst of the global competition, without practical communication skills, one cannot carve his or her niche as their talents go unnoticed among the vibrant teammates. For instance, while working, I noticed that appropriate communication skills enable people to make their presence felt, stand apart in the team, and emerge as solid leaders in various facades of life. Therefore, for groups to offer equal chances to their members, they ought to adhere to the practice and patience guidelines. Team members need to practice by interacting with colleagues and also show patience to learn from one another. Also, it is advisable to cross check with the receiver to affirm that he or she understood the message as intended.
Contrary, ineffective communication is characterized by a one-way expression as the intended message is never received as coded. Some of the common communication barriers in a team are external factors such as expressing random thoughts, wrong interpretations, some members ignoring their colleagues content, failing to confirm with the recipient, and impatient listening (Levi, 2015). Also, they are internal barriers present within a team such as work pressure, peer rivalry, high expectations, and tension among others. Businesses and organizations are bound to suffer from ineffective communication. For example, in instances where team leaders fail to mention the team responsibilities, there are many cases of wastage of workforce, inefficient time management, and duplication of work. The result would be increased conflicts, errors, and low productivity of the team and the entire organization.
Role Playing Activities and Techniques to Enhance Problem-Solving Skills
Problem-solving and decision making are part of the day to day activities in organizations. Problem-solving is a multi-step procedure in which a group develops a plan or strategy to move from an unsatisfactory state to a desirable one (Woods, 2013). Organizational issues range from those related to clients to teammates, management and other demanding situations which need to be addressed accordingly. By choosing the right problem-solving strategy, one can make a difference either by resolving the challenge or wallowing in the endemic issue. However, solving complex concerns might turn to be difficult as it has to be excruciating. Practical problem solving is an opportunity to bring development rather than mitigating a setback. There are plenty of techniques available offering the right frame of mind and procedures help to resolve whatever problem in a workplace.
Role-playing is among the technique useful in resolving problems especially in organizations where quick decision-making is highly valued. The role-playing approach is a simulation in which every team member is given a role to perform (Satish, 2014). Likewise, every participant is given some information related to his or her position, the objectives to accomplish, and their responsibilities in an organization. The approach provides a broad understanding of the existing situation and prepares people to face different eventualities. Role-playing incorporates the principles of adult learning theory to outline the relevance of training and application of learned skills (Turner, 2014). In most cases, the participants get a chance to analyze contemporary situations in a workplace and some of the best tactics and theories relatively safe to their setting. Through role-playing teammates get to interact with their colleagues with different responsibilities to understand the interconnection between various groups in an organization. As a result, one can identify and anticipate possible issues likely to arise and reveal fears and anxieties people have about an action or event. The role play is useful in developing group and individual confidence and competence in problem-solving.
The creative problem solving is among the most common techniques used by organizations to resolve arising issues. Innovative ideas do not automatically appear in peoples minds without an apparent reason. In fact, innovative ideas are as a result of trying to come up with a solution to an existing problem or to achieve a particular goal. The creative problem-solving approach involves various steps starting with clarifying and identifying a current problem which is an act of breaking down the issues affecting the workplace or a process (Levi, 2015). The process may seem easy but in most cases what we believe to be the distress is not always the real problem. The second step involves generating helpful ideas to resolve the identified issue. Mostly, the engendering useful ideas demand thorough research to come up with several solutions. The third stage is the evaluation of the available solutions to find the most effective and eventually the implementation of the most suitable solution commences.
The analytical problem solving is another approach which entails getting into details of an issue, evaluating its components and developing various perceptions to reach a solution. An analytical thinker has confidence in their ability and makes decisions and assumptions based on efficient fact-finding process. The decisions made should be credible and well supported to avoid misunderstanding in the team. However, the process is time-consuming because of the period used to compile facts to the contemporary conflicts and issues affecting operations of a group.
Building Trust in a Team
Trust and teamwork promote a stable relationship whenever two or more people decide to work in the same environment. In fact, trust is an essential element that binds every successful team. However, building trust within a teamwork structure is a skill that calls for careful management. For a leader to promote and create a trustful environment for work, one has to learn the components that build trust. Credibility is among the elements, and it defines the extent the team believes in their leaders. Some of the ways to improve credibility within a group include avoiding exaggeration, building a partnership with teammates, and issuing direct questions. Reliability, on the other hand, is more of action rather than words. It involves making promises and fulfilling them, having a consistent work process, and following a visible operation track. Intimacy is also helpful, and it develops by demonstrating empathy and showing concern for teammates situations. Similarly, self-orientation indicates whether the other team member has trust in their leaders and colleagues. Therefore, to promote self-orientation, I noticed that one should show a certain degree of care, avoid interrupting people and look for a common ground to address arising issues.
Additionally, address issues directly is another way of building trust in a team. I have learned that in some cases I might avoid some irritating discussions, but I should not let resentment and anger shape until it explodes. In instances, where people lack skills to handle difficult conversations or allocate the task to other teammates trust erodes. Therefore, it is crucial for teams to have a framework where people can talk about interpersonal feedback freely. Knowledge has been a powerful tool for success, but it is more dominant when shared. Therefore, in a team individuals should discuss relevant information as people tend to trust those they can readily associate with and share their experiences and interests. Also, showing commitment and giving early notice when I have some difficulties accomplishing a given task has a direct impact on the extent people will trust me. For this reason, a team will only function whenever the teammates believe that their coworkers are reliable. In instances where individuals lack confidence that their associate will carry his or her share of the load, only a few will show commitment to the shared goal.
Interpersonal Relationships and Group Dynamics
One of the distinctive aspects of humanity is that we are social creatures and in most cases, we are affected by presence and actions of other people. Successful navigation of interpersonal relations and group dynamics is fundamental for efficient operations of our teams. According to the social exchange theory which, a general theoretical model, relationships are weighed on the subject of rewards and costs to participants while the expected outcomes are based on prior experiences, personal standards, partners results and productivity of the other comparable factors (Turner, 2014). Additionally, group dynamics refers to the general terms for team processes in which two or more individuals have an interpersonal social relationship. Interpersonal relations are an integral segment of managerial tasks especially in formal organizations and are different in various stages of group formation.
In todays workplace technical and task proficiency is not enough to achieve success, but there is increasing the need for interpersonal skills to enable individuals to work well with other associates as a way of promoting confidence and trust in a team. Interpersonal skills consist of goals directed behaviors which brings about a desirable state of affairs. Also, it increases our awareness of techniques helpful in managing work relationships. For example, we can read the potential and actual behaviors of our colleagues and use the understanding to our advantage and that of the entire organization. The interpersonal communication is a vital elem...
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