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Teams cannot be referred to as group. Teams are composed of a number of people having similar goals, analysing their personal contributions (success) which others depend on. They are all interdependent. Individuals contribute their skills in the teams which is not the same as others hence individual behaviours towards the team need to be managed effectively that conflict could be avoided from occurring. Teams need to have a belief that they can create a synergy by working together rather working individually. Types of teams existing in an organisation are as follows:
TEAMS THAT RECOMMEND THINGS
This is a type of team where they identify the problem and find the solution and recommending the best way to do things. The team is normally formed for temporary purpose for the task forces, project teams, ad hoc committees with target fixed date of completion. Example of this can be found in the program of Apprentice where members of the team all should have one common goal of completing the task on the actual date proposed. Team members' ability to acquire the knowledge quickly on how to work together and come out with best recommendations for others to follow.
TEAMS THAT RUN THINGS
They have responsibilities which are formal leading other groups. These teams solve complex problems existing in an organisation such as Unilever plc from the all range of levels from bottom flow that are the operations level with their team leaders to the CEO and other senior executives. They contribute to the organisation by solving uncertain circumstances facing the organisation. Decisions made from the top management concerning the performance, strategy put in place, goals and purposes encouraging others to support them.
TEAMS THAT MAKE OR DO THINGS
Teams that perform day to day activities such as marketing, operations and manufacturing. Members in this type of team need to have a working relationship which is of long-term among them; agreed operating system and assistance from external source need to be sustained over a certain period of time. They need extra energy to meet the ongoing challenges in proving good performance.
BEHAVIOUR OF THE TEAMS AT UNILEVER PLC
Culture is the total ways in which people believe their customs, values etc. The way in which teams behave within the organisation reflects the culture of the organisation. Example in Unilever plc's culture that they value their employees as individual in an informally way which motivates the employees working towards meeting the goals of the organisation. In contrary teams can behave negatively to the organisation due the culture of the organisation not valuing individuals or attending to their needs that could lead to bad performance of the business also customers will receive unaccepted response from the staff service. As this was shown in the case of H&M, Primark on BBC program about the retail shop cultures in UK the way teams behave. The following are the ways in which teams behave in organisations such as Unilever plc:
Motivation is the process were by individuals in the organisation behave in the certain ways for the purpose of meeting their needs and wants. Human beings need food, water, clothes, love, shelter, security etc. when one of them is missing they won't be able to function to the extent of meeting their common goals especially survival. It's the same in the organisation team members need wages to meet their needs, security to their jobs from redundancy, they need to interact with other people to create relationship, they need to love and been loved back. When teams in Unilever plc are motivated, they will behave positive that will contribute to the development of the organisation.
WAGES AND SALARY
As the recession now keeps on hitting companies UK, companies have decided to cut down their cost of operations to make more profit. This includes paying staff lower wages and expecting them to work harder. This unachievable outcome must be considered logically, in other words if an employee's pay packet is reduced they may not expect to work harder, in fact this would act as disincentive to work hard. In contrast, an increase in a team members' salary may lead one to think that their work load will simultaneously rise or that they have become a more experienced/ qualified worker (e.g. increase in hours worked or becoming a more experienced/qualified employee. For example, a trainee Chartered accountant working within a team. His salary instantly rises once he becomes a qualified Chartered accountant, partly due to the fact the firm will charge clients a higher rate since a "Chartered accountant" is managing their financial affairs. He would not expect his salary to decrease as he becomes more experienced.)
TRAINING AND DEVELOPMENT
Individuals feel valued when they are given opportunity to develop themselves through training for the their future careers, example Unilever believe that people have got the ability of developing themselves not only toward the organisation objectives but also for their future careers they decide to involve themselves with. Teams will behave positively towards the organisation when they are being included in various organisation issues including decision making and right to contribute to development of the organisation
Teams or groups will behave in a different way toward the organisation objectives when their effort (contributions to the success of the company) have been rewarded in terms of bonuses, pay rise, shares, discounts etc. These help motivate them to put more effort into their task at hand and to perform better. As teams being composed of different cultural background but after being rewarded they can form a synergy that could add to the success of the company.
FACTORS INFLUENCING THE TEAMS SUCCESS AND THREATEN FAILURE.
Teams in the organisation can be formed by different people from the different background, values, belief, customs, race, religion etc. Example in Unilever plc teams may assign the teams to a task which is composed of moral issue some of the members may withdraw themselves from doing that task which create failure to the outcome. Where in order for the team to work properly they all must have the common goal towards the high performance leading to key success of the organisation eliminating social difference.
When team are working towards meeting the target of the organisation it can create stress to the members of the teams especially when the task is complex, tough and of short time. All organisations such as Unilever plc aim meeting their goal end of trading period, such aims leads to members been demotivated because of working long hours to meet up the deadlines which some of the members find it difficult they tend to join other companies.
LEVEL OF SKILL
Teams sometimes tend to behave differently in the organisation when some of the members of the team's level of skill are higher or lower than other members; for those who have high skill tend to be superior ignoring those who have low skill level hence can cause them to withdraw from the team due feeling inferior among other members. This might slow down the process of completing tasks or assigned project which have got fixed date to be completed.
Some company prefer people to work on their own initiatives without forming a team which in some extent is extra expense to the organisation. Because teams may have certain task assigned to do which need research that cost money and they might need more money from the company for transport and acquiring more information that will help the project. The budget of the organisation won't be able to incur such costs which can threaten failure of the team and project.
VARIOUS TECHNOLOGIES USED BY THE TEAMS AND THERE IMPACTS.
Teams in the working environment can use different devices to communicate to each other which brought by broadband having centred networked system such as emails, mobile and telephones, fax, internet etc. The spread of advance technology has influence on the pattern of teams operations and behaviour within the organisation. The way how the activities are organised in the organisation limits team's opportunities to interact socially, these cause members not to feel as part of the cohesive team. Individual's attitude to work can change as well as the level of job satisfaction. Example in the assemble production line like Vauxhall car industry, teams relationship is only been determined by the nature of the job they are doing.
Information technology is comprised of different ways of communicating to each other which could be through emails, phones, fax, social networks etc, such advance technology have created impacts on the formation and structured teams in the way they interact among themselves. Working in the centred environment between teams help the teams to create a good relationship among them. Due to spread in today's organisation, people now can work from home, at the hotel, restaurants etc by using computers interacting through emails, fax, and telephones rather face to face interaction.
Parker suggests that different geographical location between members of the team resulted in them using electronic information and communications to interact to each other. This does affect the social area of organisational working where individuals feel isolated in the working environment. He suggested that teams working together in the centred environment communicating and managing directly leads to the key success in the organisation.
Another writer called Norval suggests that, remote workers not only they feel Isolated and ignored but also feel demotivated due to absence of normal way of interacting in an informal communication within the working place, managers need to review the style of their management.
Remote teams who use electronic devices for communicating with each other, where members can be from different cultural environment with values, customs and traditions which are different it's more difficult to handle such cultural diversity in remote distance, than working in the centred area. In some extent cultural diversity can be complex in managing in the centred working environment but dealing with the teams face to face can minimise complexity of managing them, managers can be able to know cultural differences among individual working in the same environment than working outside though all having common organisational objective.
Becoming an effective team member is an important facet of life if one wishes to work in a company such as Unilever. It may take years to learn how to work in a team and thus it is important for the new generation of children to learn such skills through play and school projects. The three types of teams which were written about in this assignment exist in everyday life and not only in the corporate world. For example, a group of old friends organising a trip before agreed deadline (Teams that recommend things). Such team skills acquired or developed in our dynamic world are transferable and therefore can be reused by people in the corporate world.
Technological advancement has allowed employees to work from home or away from the office environment, e.g. emails, online interactive software, while at the same time still working in teams. Will technologies dominate work life? Will this result in further isolation and less interaction between people? The future is bleak if such questions are asked with a 'yes'.
Laurie J. Mullins, Essentials of organisational behaviour, 2nd Edition
J.R. Schermerhorn, Jr, J Hunt, R. Osborn, Organizational Behaviour, 10th Edition
ABE, Organisation behaviour, 2008