Assignment 1: Discussion
Effective team leadership results in a number of positive outcomes at the organizational and individual levels. Report on two such examples from your own professional experience, or use the Argosy University online library and the Internet to research two real-life examples of companies, which have successfully created a collaborative culture.
Based on your research and experience, in a minimum of 400 words, respond to the following points:
- Report on two examples from your own personal experience, or, use the Argosy University online library and the Internet to research two real-life examples of companies, which have successfully created a collaborative culture.
- Use resources from professional literature in your research.
- Professional literature may include the Argosy University online library, relevant textbooks, peer-reviewed journal articles, and websites created by professional organizations, agencies, or institutions (.edu, .org, or .gov).
- What conclusions about collaborative culture can you draw from your examples and research? What are the factors that made the most significant impact on these companies’ collaborative cultures?
- Compare and contrast the leadership styles in these two companies. What, if any, are the key attributes that the leaders share?
By the due date assigned, post your response to the appropriate Discussion Area. Through the end of the module, review and comment on at least two peers’ responses.
Write your initial response in 300–500 words. Your response should be thorough and address all components of the discussion question in detail, include citations of all sources, where needed, according to the APA Style, and demonstrate accurate spelling, grammar, and punctuation
Do the following when responding to your peers:
- Read your peers’ answers.
- Provide substantive comments by
- contributing new, relevant information from course readings, Web sites, or other sources;
- building on the remarks or questions of others; or
- sharing practical examples of key concepts from your professional or personal experiences
- Respond to feedback on your posting and provide feedback to other students on their ideas.
- Make sure your writing
- is clear, concise, and organized;
- demonstrates ethical scholarship in accurate representation and attribution of sources; and
- displays accurate spelling, grammar, and punctuation
Module 3 Overview
Effective leaders anticipate and provide for team members’ requirements and strive to build excellence within the team. Additionally, to motivate team members, effective leaders consistently aim to excel, persistently pursue objectives, and constantly conduct dialogues with peers, competitors, and consultants.In this module, you will analyze the steps leaders take to define goals and objectives for the team, develop confidence within team members, enhance team skills and overall learning capacities, manage conflicts, and create opportunities for growth and improvement.Additionally, you will examine the roles leaders play in creating a collaborative culture and the impact of positive leadership on team outcomes.
Leader’s Role in Team Development
A leader plays an essential role in team development; to guide a team effectively, a leader must facilitate group processes, which streamline workflow, minimize interpersonal conflict, and align with organizational skills.All teams have important goals to accomplish; however, outcomes must be clearly stated by the leader for teams to make significant progress. Every group that meets regularly has defined purposes; the extent to which those purposes are articulated often depends on the leader’s initiative.It is the specific responsibility of the leader to define objectives for the team. Without this specificity, team members often become frustrated and very soon might find themselves caught up with issues not necessarily relating to organizational outcomes. The clearer the leader makes the objectives, the more likely the team is to remain focused on goal attainment. In addition to defining outcomes clearly and purposefully, the leader bears the responsibility of persistently pursuing the team’s goals. The leader must consistently redefine goals, purposes, and objectives, and maintain appropriate momentum by encouraging team members to achieve goals.It is also the responsibility of the leader to develop confidence within team members; however, this feat is not necessarily achieved through words. Offering positive and affirming statements on a consistent basis is certainly very helpful; but giving an inexperienced team an easier challenge in the early stages of team development fosters confidence within the team. An effective leader understands that promoting confidence is important because it impacts the overarching development of the group. In addition to developing confidence, leaders must maintain a global perspective on all issues because it enhances team skills and learning capacities. As teams mature, grow, and evolve, members’ learning capacities should increase along with an expansion in their ability to handle complex and rigorous challenges. The leader must point out moments where learning has occurred and encourage teams to be reflective about processes they have followed so far, to improve, and increase future learning capacity.Leaders must also learn to manage conflicts and obstacles arising during learning and within the team development continuum. An effective team leader manages these obstacles and actually learns to use conflict as an opportunity to derive the best from alternative perspectives.Finally, effective team leaders continually create opportunities for growth and development. For example, in times when budgets are cut short, leaders might ask the team to use the supposed deficit as an opportunity to focus on priorities and perhaps seek additional funding sources or approach unrealized benefactors who might provide support. In this situation, a leader can actually help create positive momentum by redefining goals according to available resources and thereby make outcomes achievable for team members.
Creating a Collaborative Culture
One of the major challenges for a team leader is to create a collaborative culture. In a collaborative culture, people openly discuss issues, respect differences, and work as a community to achieve institutional objectives. An organizational culture exists regardless of whether a leader’s approach to the culture is strategic or not; however, many scholars believe a leader’s only job is to create, support, and endorse a specific organizational culture.In teams or groups where leadership is not exerted, the culture evolves based on dominant leadership forces. If the group is lucky, the forces are positive, and consequently, the leader might also see positive team outcomes. However, very often—with the exception of specific attempts to manage a positive and collaborative organizational culture—the system sinks to the lowest common denominator; the denominator which is easily available often becomes the focal point. For example, it might be easier to work in isolation or focus on certain simple tasks rather than go through the effort of collaborating complex and ambiguous challenges within the organization. Effective team leaders, therefore, must learn to create a truly collaborative organizational culture.In a collaborative culture, team members view collaboration as a prerequisite to work. They perceive collaboration as a natural component of the organizational culture; collaboration must exist regardless of quality of leadership. Although a number of strategies exist for building a collaborative culture, the effective ones include leaders defining objectives, building team confidence, enhancing team skills, managing obstacles, and creating opportunities for growth and development. Creating a collaborative culture will entail developing open discussions, respectful community, and collaboration and growth.
- Open discussions can be essential in developing team cohesion. Open discussions can assist in better problem solving, greater productivity, and more effective use of resources. The more team members are willing to express their feelings and be honest with each other, the less suspicion and distrust will exist. When open discussions are possible they develop an atmosphere of trust and accountability toward a common goal and all team members to focus on the tasks to be accomplish.
- A respectful community requires that needs for collaboration be mutually beneficial and well-defined with a commitment to mutual relationships and goals. There must be a clearly defined vision and purpose and a commitment to the collaborative effort by all members of the team. Team members need to know what they are expected to contribute and what will be the benefits of their efforts. There must be a common purpose and engagement in team activities and awareness of and respect for the roles of each team member.
- Collaboration and growth can assist in increasing teams’ effectiveness through the sharing of expertise, reducing risk, and the development of new solutions. By collaborating and surrounding the team with different perspectives, the team might be introduced to ideas and methods they may not have originally thought about. Collaboration and growth can apply success beyond what the team may originally have been able to accomplish.
Implications of Good Team Leadership
Effective team leadership results in a number of positive outcomes at the organizational level; well-led teams are an inspiration to the entire organization. Small, focused, and determined groups of men and women are certainly capable of deep and significant change. This is especially true in an era which—because of the Internet—offers unprecedented capacities to collaborate and put forth work on a global platform in a manner that is inexpensive and authentic.On an individual level, positive team leadership has several implications for the leader and the led. Effective leadership allows team members to thoroughly explore their own talents and abilities. Additionally, modeling effective leaders might give team members an opportunity to develop their own skills. Obviously, leaders who establish motivated, empowered, and deeply interconnected teams contain the potential to make a significant impact on key organizational outcomes. This outcome is almost always gratifying, at the individual and at the organizational levels.Some of the implications of good team leadership are impact and inspiration, cross boundaries interaction, and potential growth.
- Impact and inspiration need to be an ongoing process of team leaders. Leaders need to think differently about how to inspire their teams in order to keep their teams on track. Leaders will have to provide their teams with strategies and then inspire the teams to apply these strategies to specific situations to accomplish successful objectives. The impact of inspiration will assist in encouraging the team to overcome adversity in accomplishing their objectives.
- Cross boundaries teamwork requires a climate that is supportive of teamwork, strategic alignment, and team accountability. Cross-functional teams typically work collaboratively on tasks requiring diverse resources. The greater the interdependences between teams and the closer the cooperation between them, the greater the opportunity to reach higher levels of productivity and efficiency.
- Potential for team growth is really developed through collaboration. Collaboration provides a means necessary to support the discussion for development of new skills and innovation, which can lead to professional and team growth. The inter-relationships among different teams increase the potential for team members to learn new expertise to strengthen their own contributions to team efforts. This collaboration adds to unique team-building experiences which can enhance confidence, communication, improved productivity, and increased effectiveness.
Module 3 Summary
In this module, you examined the role of the team leader; leadership is not necessarily defined by one person or position; strong team leadership relates to team members’ as well as the leader’s learning capacities and skills. Well-led teams establish mechanisms to delegate tasks throughout the team and allow each member a chance to lead at different times.Here are the key points covered in this module:
- All teams have important goals to accomplish; therefore, it is the specific responsibility of the leader to define objectives for the team. Additionally, it is also the leader’s responsibility to develop confidence within team members, manage conflicts and obstacles, and create opportunities for growth and development.
- Leaders must learn to create a collaborative culture that promotes open discussion and comprises team members who work as a community to achieve goals. In such a culture, most often, regardless of the quality of leadership, collaboration is perceived as a natural component of the system and a prerequisite to work.
- Effective team leadership most often results in motivated, empowered, and deeply interconnected teams with the potential to make a significant impact on organizational outcomes.