JamBerry Ltd

Monday 25 February 2013

Why do teams get stuck?

If your team is struggling or seems to have got stuck, it may be for one of the following reasons.

1.    Inappropriate Leadership. Lack of structure or clear leadership can lead to a team becoming  dysfunctional and/or resistant. This in turn can lead to a high turnover of staff and without intervention disbandment of the team as being non -performing.
2.     Unqualified team members. Teams need to both have the appropriate technical skills as well as a balance to the necessary roles. If team members are lacking in basic skills, they need to have the appropriate training or be moved on.
3.     Unconstructive Climate An effective team needs to have an open climate that bridges differences and encourages individuals. If team members become defensive or secretive the team will struggle to thrive. Important issues must be openly discussed and resolutions found wherever possible.
4.     Projection and scapegoating  where the teams problems are being caused by "external influences". By making others part of the problem the team is adopting a "it wasn't me" attitude.
5.    Dominance of one or more personality/ behaviour types. It is not uncommon for the leader of a team to recruit "someone like them" or "someone who fits in" who consequently adds to the teams skills and strengths in a particular area, but does not necessarily address any gaps the team may have. Lopsided teams can often find it difficult to move forward.
6.    Teams , like the people within them, have a sense of self-esteem. Low self esteem can be a result of many things but might include: lack of drive, lack of recognition, lack of pride in their work. If their perception is  one of low self esteem, they will find it difficult to develop and move forward.
7.    Low creativity. Teams that are allowed to explore their creativity are more flexible in their approach and quicker to solve problems than those that are asked to deliver things in a fixed and rigid way. There is a difference between setting and measuring standards for particular tasks and preventing any creativity in achieving them. Harnessing creativity requires a level of risk and clear risk assessment should go hand in hand with the creative process.