Human Resource (H.R):
The word “manage” as used in business can simply be defined as the art of dealing with people with the aim of bringing the best out of then so as to improve the productivity of the business. It is not easy to manage some of the things we have that have no life let alone people. People are complex in themselves and to have different people from different backgrounds to work together can prove to be very difficult. It is however possible for people to come together for a common goal. It does not matter how they are going to achieve their goal but the common thing that they want to achieve plays a very important role in taming people to put their differences aside and work together.
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Rothwell (2008, p.23) argues that it is mandatory for a leader in a business to be very good at people-skills for it is the people working at the business that are the most important people in the business. Without employees in a business then the business does not achieve its goals. They are the people that make things move. There is therefore no escaping people-skills if a business venture is to highly perform.
“Management is nothing more than motivating other people”. These are the words of Lee Iacocca – former CEO Chrysler. It is therefore important for a manager to have some basic tips on how to manage people. It is vital that a manager delegates most of the objectives set to achieve so that he or she gets time to manage the team he or she has been given to manage. It also helps the manager to clear his or her mind. It is very important that the person who delegates has a clear head on his or her shoulders.
Pearce and Conger (2002, p.41) identify that one of the most important “X factor” is team work. A strong team delivers most of the things put before it. This paper will focus on teamwork and critically analyse it on how it can be used to improve performance. When people come together, more ideas are bound to be generated, there is strength in numbers and also there is the variety being applied in order to achieve a common objective.
Whenever humans come together with a common objective there is very little that they cannot do. It is important that the tem leader gets to have a one on one understanding with each of the team members so as to know the individual strengths of the team members. It is in this way that the responsibilities are divided. One does what they are good at but with the conscious awareness that he or she is only but a piece of a jigsaw, that there are others that are also specialising in their area of expertise to complete the jig saw into one complete thing that makes economic and objective sense (Michaels, 1994, p.45).
The only reason a company would invest in its people is so as to enhance performance of the business. They are the key players in an organisation and should be handled with care. There are various ways in which organisations or businesses entice and build their employees so as to achieve higher quality and quantity performance. A business is judged by its outcome. It is the various people employed to work for the venture equipped with the spirit of teamwork that determine the performance of the business. It is quite clear that team work is then a very important factor as it is the ship in which if the business sails, it will never drown or subdue to the waves of furious business challenges.
The winning team
It is always feels good to be associated with winning. It makes one feel like they are pursuing a worthy cause. If a team is to be put together in a business then it better be a winning team. It is not enough to hire professionals who know what they are supposed to do at exactly which time to have a winning team but recruiting a group of people who will work together in the most efficient of ways.
A team that has people who share the same destination work extremely well with each other. It is only when people in a team do not share a vision that they do not work well. A team is defined by the togetherness in achieving the specific goals and objectives of a business. When people share a vision then what do they have to fight over and not work together? Nothing. Differences may exist between individuals but for as long as they have a common goal then they can do anything despite their differences.
In order for a team to have a common goal, then it is good practice for members to meet in order to discuss the various projects that have to be undertaken. The secret behind managing people is in a business is to make the employees or the team members feel like they coined and own the business objectives, vision and mission. Koestenbaum (2002, p.74) reveals that this will help people to have a common sense of direction. This implies that he visions, missions and objectives of a business need to have a strong base upon which, a strong team is built.
Any team has problems but it is up to the team leader to be very sensitive to any slight behavioural change that would reduce the performance of the team in the long run. The team leader as a people manager should also talk to the team members and encourage them. When one is given motivation to do something, a person is performs even better as they flourish in the though that it is not only him or her that believes he or she can do it but also the team leader.
There are teams made up of simple human beings like any human being but thee is always something about the teams. They have the attitude that they were born to win. An example of one such team is “Manchester United Football Team”. They believe that they are winners. When a person believes something, it is very difficult for them not to make it a reality. It is important that people managing people instil a winning attitude in their team members (Lawler et al., 2004, p.14). It goes a long way in building a strong competent team.
How Teamwork affects other key performance areas
This can be illustrated by a diagram which is shown below:
According to Vandenberg and Lance (1992, p.156), under managing self we have several issues that are worth elaborating and they are eight in number. The very first one is the creative nature and originality of the self. Teamwork improves the ability of a person to get creative and think of ways to get out of tasks presented to him or her that are challenging. This is because the person is always trying to get out of something and always jogging his or her mind to get out of something. The person also wants to be original.
It is very difficult to find unethical leadership in a person who leads a team or even the team member himself or herself. A person is always out to improve and to build the winning team so as to achieve the objectives of the business and also get to improve the performance of the team. Performance is core in teams so the self is built to consider ethics when tackling organisational challenges (Walker, 2002, p.36).
It is the people around us that build us. Man is no island. People in good teams have been found to have a better way of communication and also have the character to go with this. For a good team to succeed, the members that comprise it have to be in constant communication with each other. A marriage is a good example of a team. Whenever there is breakdown of communication in a marriage then it becomes difficult for things to move. Good marriages are ones in which there is constant effective communication going on, on the regular (West, 2004, p.6). It is through teamwork that a person becomes effective in communication and also gets to know the character he or she should acquire in order to succeed in the business world.
Managing people is not only about managing other people but also managing the self. Team work greatly helps in doing this. In teams, it is normal for people to make contributions that they own in order to steer their objective forward. This helps to build a person I problem solving skills which is a factor important to have in the business world. Williams and Anderson , (1991, p.604) concurs that the values of the self are also improved or built. In good effective teams, good values are encouraged as undesirable ones are normally discouraged. This helps a person to always focus on having good values whose practice leads to them sticking.
Effective teams have brainstorming sessions where team members contribute in order to make the achievement of their objectives a success. This helps a person to improve their thinking capacities and also helps team members to think in a way that optimises the performance of the business (Blau, 1985, p.279). It gives the individual that deliberate way of thinking that involves thinking in a certain direction. Team members benefit by being in such teams.
For a team to succeed then the personalities of the persons in it need to be on point. It is the work personality that helps team members to be able to work through their differences with that common vision in mind. When members learn the personality they need to have in order to work together they will definitely practice this as all of them want to get to the goal so bad. In life, it really matters how badly, one wants to get something as if one does not want something so badly, they will not put differences aside, they will not work hard enough and they will not value input from team members.
Under managing people, there are four key areas that need to be discussed and team work is a major component or ingredient in managing people. Arbinger Institute (2002, p.9) suggests that there is team work, the diversity of people, transformed leadership and motivating people. Team work is intertwined with the three issues as it is in team work that people are motivated to push on in order to improve performance.
Leadership is also transformed in team work as most of the time, it is not the team members that learn from the team leader but it is the team leader most of the time rather than not that learn from the team members (National Institute of Social Work, 1996, p.11). The members teach the leaders on hoe to lead knowingly or unknowingly. This gives birth to a new way of leading especially if the leader of a tea listens to his members.
Teams can be made up of a rich diversity of people which can either be used to achieve the objectives of a business or also allow the differences that exist within to ruin the team. In International Companies, recruitment as in the type of the company is done at an international level. This means that people will be mixed from different cultures and backgrounds and also different races as well (Block, 1996, p.33). It is quite challenging building a team of people of the same background. It is quite tasking to build a team that comprises of different people. People of one background have been seen to appreciate the music from another background even when they do not know what they are saying. It is in this regard that a team leader needs to direct his team members to be able to dance to the same tune which is synonymous to achieving the same objectives of the business. Such teams come to appreciate diversity. They come to understand that people are different but sure can work together in order to achieve a common goal.
Brown and Wardle (1996, p.12) argues that managing work is also another factor that is intertwined with team work. In order to manage a team then the work also has to be managed; the work needs to be kept track of. It is very important that work goes on smoothly in a team even when the management of the team has to be changed for this purpose. Managing work involves the judgement of decisions and also the ability to manage the decision.
A decision can be evaluated on the basis of the results of the work that is done or the work that has been achieved in order. The team can easily be evaluated on the same based on the decisions the team made. A team can be judged based on the decisions they made. The decisions they make have to improve performance in the business or organisation (Covey, 2009, p.62). Once the decision is made, then it needs to be managed. When a decision is not managed, then it beats logic to have made the decision in the first place. It is important that team members carry follow through their decisions in order to achieve the task given to undertake.
A good team is one that manages the team members well. A strong human resource management is a must in strong teams. Whenever the human resource in a team is good, there are very slim chances of a team not doing its best to accomplish whatever task that is presented before them. We have seen that people are very important and it is through people that a business gets to achieve its objectives. According to Dimma (2007, p.47), a good human resource department forming part of a team will value the employee and make that employee as reasonably comfortable as possible in order for the business to achieve its objectives.
A good human resource sub team will provide incentives to persons working in their business; give them a reason to turn down job offers given by other businesses or companies. Good teams also ensure that they manage the information they have in a way to improve performance rather than sitting on information. It is the information we gather in business or in life that assist us in making decisions hence the word informed decision. It is important that a team acts on the basis that it has information.
Innovation, Priority management and Objective setting are al components of managing work but also relate to team work (Harrison, 1972, p.28). It is in teams that innovative ideas, decisions and work emerge from. This is because of the team aspect. Teams also prioritise in terms of work so as not to leave important work pending for a long time than usual. It is important that a team sets for itself objectives aside from the objectives of the business so as to also have a common goal in terms of work.
Team building and Team Work
Companies have been seen to spend quite a lot of money so as to improve the team building skills of their employees. This goes on to show just how important team work is important in the world we live in today especially in the business world. It is essential that a manager has team building skills as it is part and parcel of managing people. It is an important part of managing people.
The same people can work by themselves but achieve less productivity. A good, strong team is one in which these same people come together and work towards a goal but perform much better than when they were working on an individual basis. This is the idea behind merging. Some companies merge because together, they have more yields and perform on a different level, giving their customers higher quality of service than when the companies were doing it on their own (Iverson and Roy, 1994, p.39). This is the secret of synergy. Individuals are different but synergised so as to achieve optimum performance. In team building, there are two very important factors to consider.
One factor that we have to appreciate in team building is the diversity that exists in terms of the personalities that exist and also the skills. The different people have to be in such a way that they fully exploit their potential to the last drop but again, the weaknesses of the same people are covered for by the other people‘s strengths. Their different personalities have to be in a way that they balance out.
In a good team, all ideas, works and decisions in a team made by different individuals are directed to a common purpose either created within the team or the objectives of the business (Goodwin, 2005, p.91). The goals have to be clearly understood by the team members. When some team members get it while others don’t then already there is a loophole and the team is bound to fail because of a different set of goals embedded in the different team members’ minds.
Activities aimed at team building are very important so as to assist in the establishment of a strong team. To have a great team takes a lot of hard work, dedication and determination. Team building activities are therefore very important in that they assist in the building of a great team. It is important that a team is led by someone but not just anyone but a good leader. It may not help that a team has clearly understood the objectives, they ma have the same personality thus resulting in conflicts mostly because of fighting (Charan, Drotter and Noel, 2001, p.29). If everyone in a team wants to be a leader then we have a problem as each team member will be acting so as to show how he or she can dominate people. This has led to in-house fighting on too many an instance. There are many factors that have to be overcome to have a good team which is reason the more for team building activities to be taken seriously.
There are basic techniques that have to be in place for an effective team to be built. The most obvious one is that all the team members need to have understood and clearly have the goals and objectives behind having the team and also the goals and objectives behind having the business or organisation. There also has to be a clear chain of command in that every single team member is completely aware of their duties and responsibilities and there should be no grey area in this. All the roles have to be distinct so that in the case that there is competition over a certain role then the role needs to be split into smaller distinct roles so as to avoid conflict in the team built.
A team leader also needs to be able to spend time with his or her team members so as to understand the various personalities and skills he or she has in the team and also appreciate the same. When a team leader is fair, open, honest and loyal then it becomes a little bit easier to have the same back from the employees or team members. This may be summarised to leading by example.
It is in team building activities that members learn how to trust each other and also be open with each other. When this is done then they work together better. The activities should have social times deliberately to prompt people to bond and share their experiences. They get to know each other better which is good for the business as this will help them accommodate each other’s faults but accentuating their strengths (Brion, 1989, p.32). This is what we want to achieve by having a team working on something. An example of one such activity is scheduling the week such that a specific day of the week is set aside so that employees or team members can share lunch. It is over this that they bond.
The secret to having an effective team built is also to have the practice of involving the team members in the decision making process so that they feel like they own the decision. When one owns something, it is very difficult for them not to take care of it and watch it grow. The goal can be set in a group. The tactics to be used to undertake in undertaking challenges presented to a team are also brainstormed by the team with them being encouraged to give possible solutions. This leads to the obligated feeling of a team member since a sense of ownership has been cultivated in him or her, which leads to the commitment of team leaders to the cause of the team. There is also need to keep the lines of communication open in a team. It is through this that a team can succeed.
In today’s world, it is not so fashionable to do things on an individual basis as performance is result driven. The world expects so much from people that the only way the same expectation can be met is through team work. Most of the world’s greatest achievements have been accomplished because of team work. It is very difficult to achieve the results desired in a business single handily. It will have to be in a team. Team work is a very important aspect of business (Curry, et al., 1986, p.851). This explains why businesses always want to now if one is a team player before recruiting them into their companies. Business owners will look at a person’s history to be able to establish whether they are team players or not.
It is quite normal in the global arena to find teams in businesses as people have appreciated strength in numbers. To achieve almost perfection in a business and to boost sales or improve the quality of businesses, team work is essential. It is important to have team skills whether one will eventually be a team member or a team leader (Kelley, 1999, p.63). A team leader is a leader to the extent of the performance of his or her team. A team leader is always a member of another team only on a different level. It is quite clear that the world revolves in team work. It is safe to say that the world is a family of teams; its just that they have different objectives and different personalities and skills.
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