Case Study: on Organizational Behavior and Management

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Organizational Behavior and Management

Team Building: Organizational Behavior and Management

One of the best ways to manage the behavior of employees in an organization is through team building. There are many ways in which teams can be built, and there are also many different types of teams - and different exercise that can be used to help create the best possible teams for any organization. Many work environments focus on company goals and on personal goals, but teams (and team goals) can be a better choice for a large number of organizations (Aritzeta, Swailes, & Senior, 2007). Because that is the case, more organizations are trying to learn how to build good teams. This is still one of the areas where organizations have difficulty, because they are unsure how they should build teams and how to put the right people together to get the best work and the best environment for everyone involved (Ellis, et al., 2008). Businesses that can learn to build good teams will be more likely to have workers that are happy and productive, and they will get more done overall than companies where there is no teamwork.

Some of the reasons for building teams include improving communication and motivating employees, along with making the workplace more enjoyable for everyone involved . In addition, building teams can help employees really get to know one another and feel as though they are on the same page with the goals that they have set. Strengths and weaknesses of all employees come out when they work with others in teams, and that can help people learn more about themselves and how they can improve their work and personal relationships and abilities. Collaboration with others is highly important in today's global business world, and when people learn how to work in teams they are able to collaborate more easily. That gives them more "people skills" and helps them move forward with their career plans. They can improve not only their own lot in life, but also the impression that others have of the company at which they work, and that is beneficial to everyone (Garavaglia & McDaniel, 2010).

When people work in teams, there are many team-building exercises that they can do in order to gain more understanding of one another and get more comfortable working together (Aritzeta, Swailes, & Senior, 2007). Team-building exercises are important for efficient work, and they can offer a wide variety of tasks that members can use. Not all team-building exercises will be the right ones for certain groups or certain people, but getting outside of the comfort zone is part of what should be considered when a person is team building (Ellis, et al., 2008). When people never leave their comfort zone, they are not able to think outside of the box and do things that are different from what they would normally consider doing. Some team-building exercises are very simple, and others are quite complex (Garavaglia & McDaniel, 2010). One is not necessarily better than the other, and it comes down to personal preference and the issues on which the organization chooses to focus when working with the teams it has created.

Some of the team-building exercises that are performed by various groups take only a few minutes, and others can last over several days (Ellis, et al., 2008). Not all companies want to get that involved with their team-building exercises, but other companies are very committed to making sure that their teams work together as cohesive units instead of separate entities. The more cohesive a team really is, no matter what that team is designed to do, the better that team will be at its appointed task. In some cases, team-building exercises just do not work and it is necessary to disband the team (or teams) and start over (Aritzeta, Swailes, & Senior, 2007). Some people are caustic and do not work well with others, and some personalities simply clash too much to be overcome. This is rare, however, and the majority of the people who are expected to work together in teams are capable of doing so with a minimum of difficulty. That is especially true after they have practiced team-building exercises and have undergone proper training that has allowed them to understand and respect differences more easily than before.

The types of team-building exercises include communication exercises, problem solving and decision making exercises, planning and adaptability exercises, and trust exercises (Gilley, et al., 2010). Communication exercises are actually what they would seem to be - they are exercises designed to foster and improve communication between members of a team. They are, generally, activities in which people have to solve problems through good communication. If the team members are not capable of communicating with one another effectively and efficiently, the problem will not be solved and the team will "fail" the exercise. Communication exercises are very similar (and often include) problem solving and decision making exercises (Garavaglia & McDaniel, 2010). These exercises that require team members to make decisions and solve problems are very common in organizations, too, because they are the most similar to what teams of employees will be doing in their work life every day. They can be a very good gauge as to whether employees will be able to solve real-time and "real life" problems that come up in the organization, and if the employees are not able to do that it is possible that the team needs to be adjusted or the team members need more training in effective communication with one another.

How well groups plan and adapt are other important things to test, and can be a good basis for team-building exercises (Gilley, et al., 2010). When a team is given a task, they should not just jump in because that can be dangerous and can cause the team to take more time or spend more money than it really should. Of course there is always the chance that something will go wrong even with the best of planning, but having a plan and executing it correctly is one of the best ways for a team to see success (Aritzeta, Swailes, & Senior, 2007). The team also needs to show that it can adapt to problems that it faces either due to a lack of planning or because the plans it created did not work as anticipated. Any team that can adapt to change is a team that will be able to find the good in any situation and help the company move forward.

One of the most significant - and most difficult - of the team-building exercises are the trust exercises. These can be complicated and hard to do because people do not always trust others easily (Ellis, et al., 2008). The degrees of trust that are seen can very strongly from person to person, and some members of the team may trust one member more than another. That can make the team members appear to be "playing favorites," which is never a good thing to do in a working environment where everyone has to pull together to ensure that things get done properly (Ellis, et al., 2008). Certainly, there will be team members who like one another more than they like other team members. That is just part of life, but it should be kept out of the working environment as much as possible. When people are working together in teams, the best thing they can do is work to get along as well as possible so that they can get their work done. That is what the company is looking for, and what should be done when it comes to being professional in a workplace and team environment (Gilley, et al., 2010).

Team-building activities can be simple and social, so that the team members get a better chance to know one another (Ellis, et al., 2008). Even having a small office party or an after work get-together can be a good way to allow people to relax and get to know one another in a way that does not make them feel pressured. It is very important to remember that one may not always like all of the team members that one has been assigned to work with. Whether people like one another is not the issue, although it is beneficial if the team members all enjoy one another's company and form friendships with the other members of the team. However, liking someone is not required. What is required is being able to work with the other people who are part of the team in a way that fosters a good working environment and allows the company to move forward with its goals. Each person on the team will have goals that he or she wants to meet, and the company will have goals, as well. In addition to those goals, there will be team goals that also have to be addressed and that should be more easily met if the team… [END OF PREVIEW]

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