The basics of Team Building

In the late 80s and 90s, 'Team Building' has been recognized by many companies as an important factor in providing a quality service and remaining competitive. Yet the term 'team building' can sometimes seem rather nebulous - people often know that they need it, but aren't quite sure what it is.

What is a Team

Here are some terms that are often used to describe 'a team'.
Which ones do you think define what a team is ?

Group of people Synergy Having one aim
Whole > Sum Co-operation Flexibility
Working together Reporting to one boss Serving one customer


Some of these terms are features of good teams. For example, "whole sum" is a feature of a team that is working well together, but there are some teams whose collective performance falls short of what you might expect given the quality of individuals. The Apollo Syndrome is a good example of this where, a team composed of highly intelligent people often performs worse than teams made of up "less-able" members. The term "reporting to one boss" can be a misleading one. In a well-designed organizational structure, people reporting to one boss do often form "teams". But reporting lines are frequently designed within the constraints of grading structures. Of necessity, there is often a compromise between pay structures or traditional reporting lines, and grouping people together who are a team. In reality, team structures are often complicated, and people can be members of several teams, because:


"A team is a group of people working together towards a common goal"

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