Teams are groups of people that have complementary skills that are committed to an accepted purpose and embrace themselves mutually responsible for its achievement. Ideally, team members develop an identity in order to work in a coordinated and mutually supportive way to fulfill their ambitions or purposes. The effectiveness of a team can be assessed through task effectiveness, which is the extent to which the team is successful in accomplishing its task-related objectives. A team can achieve its objectives by pooling expertise and experience its members in a coordinated way. Simply bringing individuals together does not necessarily ensure that they will make effective decisions and function as a team. Teams are composed of people who have an array of emotional and social needs which can either be frustrated or met by the team. An important factor that yields low productivity of team is teamwork indifference which is basically failure to be supportive or meet the needs of team members. Besides these factors, there are many other factors which contribute to either high or low performance of a team. This particular report is going to discuss effectiveness of teamwork in a research work. Allocation of tasks to different individuals, problems encountered in team work and uses of social media for research purpose are core points discussed in the report.
A team is composed of individuals who are grouped together for achieving a common goal or purpose. All the team members, if working on their own, cannot achieve goal in effective manner. In a team, some individuals have managing skills, while some are good at controlling. Some individuals can plan better while others can collect information because they have contacts in the field. Therefore, objectives of a team can only be achieved, if individuals allocated their specific goals which meet their aptitudes and skills. Assigning tasks to different individuals in a team is called task allocation. Task allocation is the way of distributing responsibilities and workloads accompanying to one assignment among individuals and authoritative units that accomplish their own parts of the team objectives. In any team, all of the members depend on one another for achieving their tasks. If all of the individuals in a team support each other, they can achieve team objectives in an effective manner. Now the question arises, how to allocate tasks among team members. For allocating tasks to different individuals in a team, the most important things to be mentioned are skills and aptitudes of team members. The leader of a team needs to distribute team goals in easy and achievable tasks. After separating these tasks, the next step is to assign appropriate tasks to the appropriate members. Task allocation must be done on two bases. One is to match the aptitude of individual for the task, and second is to assess the capability of individual for achieving that particular task. If an individual has limited public contacts and he/she is assigned to collect primary data for research, he or she can face difficulties in achieving this task. If the similar task is allocated to a person having public contacts and good interpersonal skills, he/she can accomplish the task in an effective manner. In this way, it can be said that allocation of task is the key to achievement of team objective.
Managing Conflicts Among Individuals in a Team
When individuals are grouped together, they can develop certain differences for many reasons. Conflicts are evident when people from different background and social classes are grouped together. People have varying viewpoints and under the appropriate set of circumstances, those differences amplify to conflict. How a team handles these conflicts determines whether it works to the team’s advantage or contributes to its demise.
Conflict isn’t necessarily a bad thing, though. Constructive and healthy conflict is a basis of top performing teams. Conflict arises from differences among people; the aforementioned differences that generally accomplish assorted teams are more effective than those fabricated up of individuals with agnate experience. If individuals with capricious viewpoints, experiences, skills, and opinions are tasked with the aim or challenge, the accumulated effort can far beat what any group of same individuals could achieve (William, 2010). Team members have to be accessible to these differences and not let them accelerate into absolute disputes.
Team differences can be set in effective manner by developing appropriate skills. The team leader needs to have appropriate skills and ability to resolve conflicts in day to day activities. In order to manage conflicts in effective manner, a three step process has to be followed. The process is as follows:
The very first step is to acknowledge the conflict. The quicker a conflict is recognized the easier it is to handle it in effective manner. After recognizing the conflict in a team, this conflict needs to be discussed with the other team members in order to know their opinion about the conflict. Everybody in the team must abet in resolving the conflict. This agency putting the aggregation first, and may absorb ambience abreast individual assessment or account for the time being.
The next step is to communicate all members in the resolution of conflict. It is the most important to consider the throughout resolution activity and to keep communications open for all members of the team. The individuals of the team must be coordinated and communicated with to know their feelings and attitudes regarding the conflict. Active listening is an effective measure for resolving conflicts because in order to move on it is very important to accept the views and opinions of other team members. Discussion with the team members can lead to sorting ways through which a conflict is to be resolved.
When all parties accept the others’ positions, the team has to decide what accommodation or action to take. With the facts and assumptions considered, it’s easier to see the best of actions and adeptness agreement.
Therefore, it can be said that mutual discussion and communication with the team members can result in effective resolution of conflicts. Without recognizing a conflict and communicating it effectively to the other team members, solution of problem or conflict cannot be assessed in effective manner.
Problems Associated with Teamwork
There are two types of teamwork problems (Michael, 2012):
The first is about organizational structure. In a teamwork context, it refers to unclear goals and duties of team members. If team members are assigned unclear goals and tasks, they cannot achieve it effectively. In a research context, such a team can lead to inappropriate results of research. It also refers to the composition of team with inappropriate talent and skills. If members in a research team are from disciplines other than research, it is more likely that they fail to achieve the results.
The second issue in teamwork is personal issue. Usually, it is hard for people to work with others. Due to different perceptions and attitudes they face differences and conflicts may arise. These differences are important cause of teams’ low productivity. In the previous section it was mentioned that productivity of team can be enhanced by overcoming conflicts.
Social Media as a Research Tool
Social networking media such as Facebook and twitter can be used for researching purposes. In a primary research, data is to be collected from respondents. On social media networking, huge population of different preferences, classes and attitudes is available. Such a huge population at one place can be used effectively to collect data regarding primary research in any field. For instance, in marketing research, organizations can assess the effectiveness of their products by conducting a survey on social media networking. Survey from a huge sample helps to generalize results over a large population. Organizations can develop connections with their customers through fan pages on social media. This can also be a way to assess needs and preferences of customers. Jason (2011) suggests that organizations which do not have heavy budgets for conducting research can make use of social media networking for conducting research in effective manner.