Even though it is a “Self-Managed” work team, it is still the manager’s job to facilitate the effectiveness of the group. The overall outcome of the team should result in a high level of productivity, while completing the task in an efficient manner. Managers should follow a set of guidelines to help work teams reach the desired result. Planning and scheduling the work, assigning tasks to members, making important decision, selection of group members, and establishing targets will allow the team to be highly productive.
It is very important to plan and schedule the work so the job can be completed in a given time period with out highly unmanageable workloads. If the project is not well planned and scheduled, the group can often put things off till the last minute and do an unsatisfactory job. A well-planned project will allow the team to effectively complete the task with very low levels of stress since everything is mapped out in a manageable time frame.
It is important for everyone in the group to do a fair share of work, assigning each member a task to complete is a good way to get everyone involved. Although this is a good plan, you can sometimes see it backfire. One member of the team not completing their assignment is one way the whole group can suffer. Weather it is another member picking up the slack or just skipping over that section completely, the groups’ effectiveness will be lower. We have all seen this in academics when a member of the team does not show up for a meeting or pull their weight on the assignment. But, instead of losing the respect of a manger, you just get a lower grade.
Allowing the team to make important decisions can make the members feel like they are actually an important part of the company. When the members of the team job satisfaction is up, organizational effectiveness will also go up. A managers role is to make sure the group is satisfied with the job. Letting them make operational decisions is a good way of making them feel like they are contributing to the effectiveness of the company.
Trust is a big issue in self-managed work teams. If the members don’t trust each other nothing is going to get accomplished. By allowing a pre-determined leader to pick their group members, a well-rounded team will be constructed because no one would pick someone they didn’t trust to be on their team.
Finally managers need to consider if the team is going to choose realistic targets and goals for the project. In most cases, a manager will give group a deadline for the job to be finished. It is then up to the team to decide how they are going to meet this deadline. By setting realistic targets it will ensure that the job is not only done on time, but also that it will be highly effective. Self-managed means that the manager does not intervene but it is important for the manager to set guidelines for the team to reach the highest level of productivity.
The single most important thing that I learned about self-managed work teams is the fact that there always is an adjournment stage. Groups engaging in a closing is seen almost every day, but I never realized it until it was mentioned in class. Take for example, high school graduation. It is an event that happens every year, but I would have never related the class to being the group and graduation to being its closing. It is weird to see how the things you never really think about are highly studied and structured topics.
In the future I don’t know that I will use the knowledge that self managed work teams need an adjourning stage. However, it will make me look at things with the state of mind that this relates to something and is not just done for the heck of it. The adjourning stage is often fun. I don’t think there was one person who did a presentation that did not have fun, not only with their presentation, but by interacting with the other teams presentations as well.
A leader is an individual who leads others along a way; a guide is essential for the growth and development of a workgroup. Although our team did not have one set person who was the leader, it seemed more to be that everyone in the group took the position at one time or another. For example, during the forming and storming stage when questions were assigned to the group, a different member of our group took control of each session. Our leader was essentially the whole group since every member wanted what was best for the team, enabling us to create a successful final product.
In most other scholastic groups I have worked in, a leader did emerge, taking control at every session and making sure everything was well organized. Most of the time the person that emerges is a natural leader. Since everyone does not have this quality, it is important for managers to be sure that a good leader will emerge to ensure organizational effectiveness. The leader in our group depended on the day and the topic. All in all our group functioned well being that it did not have one set leader.