Group and learning process Essay Example

  • Category:
    Sociology
  • Document type:
    Essay
  • Level:
    Undergraduate
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    2474

6An essay on teamwork experiences

An essay on teamwork experiences

An essay on teamwork experiences

Introduction

A group or team is made up two or more people working together towards a particular goal that is beneficial to them all. An ideal approach to guarantee a decent learning background in groups and teamwork is to contemplate whether an undertaking is best done in a group. Further, a clear set of expectations and assumptions about the group work to be undertaken are enumerated. If a group is working great, work is completed, and applicable group procedures create a conducive environment. In virtuous groups, the students or persons involved may contribute distinctively at several times. They collaborate, and human connections and relationships are expected of them. It may happen consequently or individuals, at separate times, can make it their business to keep up the environment and human traits of the gathering. Moreover, in teamwork, one can draw on every participants’ learning, knowledge and perspective frequently providing the individual with a thoroughly thought consideration of the subject matter. Furthermore, it provides a clear understanding of the material in focus.

Groups and teams are extraordinary for inspiration: they compel a person to be accountable to others and habitually accomplish more work on an undertaking than they may when just mindful to oneself. Group work maintains the participants on task with the work at hand. It’s harder to hesitate when working with others. Working in groups and teamwork, particularly analysing videos, undertaking assignments, composing articles together, are in common in and out of institutions. Besides, in organizations, teams and groups provides a greater understanding of the various tasks and improve on one’s ability to work and participate fully in a group. Group work enables goals tobe attained that would not have been possible on an individual level. Likewise, the group works undertaken provided a real experience on the challenges encountered in teamwork. It further proves as a tool for self-improvement and gaining of skills. The positive teamwork experiences, challenges and the approach to solving the challenges are analysed.

Positive experiences

The group work undertaken provided a chance to experience the importance of working as a team. Positive teamwork experiences were realised which would not have been experienced while working as an individual. The positive teamwork experiences include

Higher efficiency: With working in the group, a higher efficiency is attained other than working as an individual. It occurs since each participant’s effort were combined and thereby the intended project was accomplished. Working in groups provides a better chance for quality work to be accomplished[ CITATION Ken07 l 2057 ]. Thus, to complete a task with a higher degree of efficiency, one ought to undertake it in a diverse willing team of individuals driven by the same goal.

Speed: We accomplished the project in time. The combinations of efforts of each participant provided enabled to fragmentation of the exercise into smaller units that could easily be realised. Thereby, the activity was completed in less time[ CITATION The15 l 2057 ]. The experienced of task completion in time and at higher speed is only realisable when a task is undertaken by cooperating members of a team.

Thoughtful ideas: Undertaking a task pertains bringing in ideas, different information and knowledge. Thereby, the ideas and sets of information brought in by each member of the group provided a better chance of providing the solutions to the task[ CITATION Uni15 l 2057 ]. The combination of the ideas and information provides an approach to the taskthat could not have been identified by just an individual.

Effectiveness: The efforts of each member of the group were coordinated. It entails the division of labour by one’s ability to address the issue more thoroughly[ CITATION Mar13 l 2057 ]. It thereby provided a systematic and detailed approach the project improving on its quality. Thus, the task was undertaken effectively.

Mutual support and understanding: The completion of the task was the goal each team member had. Therefore, each participant relied on the other team members with shared goals. We encouraged and assisted each other as we worked on the project. Besides, with the shared goals, we understood each other: the thoughts, ideas, and approaches to certain issues[ CITATION Sar09 l 2057 ]. Such kind of support and understanding enabled us to achieve the goals we could not have realized if we had worked by ourselves.

Enhanced sense of accomplishment: At the completion of the task, each member had a greater feeling of accomplishment. Precisely, the feeling was enhanced due to the collective responsibility for the outcome expected from the project[ CITATION Nan09 l 2057 ]. The collaboration, coordination and collection of ideas from the various individuals involved established a feeling successful and actual executionof the task.

Smarter use of available resources: The team was focused on getting the objectives and goals attained. Thereby, creative ways of utilizing the resources at hand to accomplish the tasks were applied other than focusing on the constraints associated with it. Thus, working as a group, pooling of resources provides an easier way of tackling tasks rather than working as an individual[ CITATION Gar15 l 2057 ].

The aggregate worth made by cooperation relies on upon the overall viability of the collaboration and team effort. While one might deliberate merely attaining and realising an objective, an advantage to the group, but by taking advantage what is being offered by the team, they can achieve a wider set of benefits.

Problems encountered

Teamwork and working in groups has lots of benefits to the individuals involved. However, there are problems encountered during the coordination and working of the groups. Thus, as we were working as a group to complete the task, some problems were encountered. The problems include:

Unequal participation: There was a tendency for some team members to sit, relax and the others do most of the work. It further caused resentment within the group[ CITATION Ste10 l 2057 ]. Unequal participation affects the negative effectiveness of a group and relents inadequate information and ideas. Besides, it degrades cooperation, mutual support, and understanding.

Inherent conflicts: Some of the team members had difficulty in accepting the ideas differing from theirs. They had a perception that their ideas are always right at should always be consideredbefore others. The perception lead to disagreements and conflict among the team members as they strive to have differing ideas considered[ CITATION Uni15 l 2057 ]. It negatively affected the group discussion.

Competition: Some members perceived working in a group as competitive. It thus generated destructive behaviours and partially drained the creative energy of other team players and the group. For example, they perceived the disagreements with their philosophies as a put-down by the group. Furthermore, they tried to sabotage the thoughts especially of those individuals who disagreed with them instead of looking for means to improve on their ideas[ CITATION Ste10 l 2057 ]. The competition among some individuals induced enmity in the group downgrading it ability to undertake the task.

Leadership: Some individuals compete for recognition as they strived to lead the group. Furthermore, at the initial stages, due to the lack of leaders to spearhead the discussion, there was a lack of direction pertaining how the task was to be undertaken. It proved a real threat to the existence of the group and the completion of the task[ CITATION Ros15 l 2057 ]. Thereby, the lack leaders and completion of members to spearhead a team proves a problem to the effectivecompletion of any task or project or intended objective.

Communication and time allocation: Communication to the respective members of the venue and time of meeting posed a great problem. Some members were not informed on where the meetings were being held and a lot of time were wasted trying to coordinate and wait for the arrival of individuals to the meeting. Inadequate communication reduces the effectiveness of a group in pursuing the set goals[ CITATION Sar09 l 2057 ].

Approaches to the problems

Due to the encountered problems during the execution of tasks by groups, certain methods are developed to curb the difficulties. Therefore, as a group, we developed inadequate solution to the problems we encountered and successfully fulfilled the intended goals of the group[ CITATION Ste10 l 2057 ]. Some of the approaches we employed include:

  • Active regular communication pertaining meetings, activities and another urgent issue in the group was engaged.

  • Leaders were selected to guide the groups undertaking and lead by example.

  • Equal opportunities and time were allocated to members to members to air out their thoughts and ideas.

  • The group members who did not participate in the assemblage’s conventions and accomplishments were reprimanded.

  • Adequate and convenient time and the venue were selected for the meetings through joint agreement.

  • Conflicting ideas were discussed, and decisions were made through collective agreement of the members.

  • Tasks were divided among the participants by their, capabilities, strengths, weaknesses, and abilities.

Communication

Effective communication was employed by a text message and voice call of members before the meetings. Furthermore, at the adjoining of the preceding meeting, the next meeting date, time and venue was discussed and agreed upon by each member of the group. Besides, group’s secretary had the responsibility of reminding the members of the upcoming activities, and meetings[ CITATION Sar09 l 2057 ]. Thus, the active time to time communication proved an effective scheme as the group undertook its accomplishments.

Leadership

The leaders to guide the group and spearhead the group’s activities were elected. Also, the leadership style employed was the servant style of leadership. The individuals in aleadership position in the group acted by example for the other members to emulate[ CITATION Min15 l 2057 ]. Moreover, they coordinated the formulation of thescheme of work to be followed by the participants and controlled the activities undertaken. The leaders were selectedby mutual agreement by the members and the willingness of the selected leaders to head the group’s accomplishments.

With the selection of leaders to head the various meetings and activities of the team, the inherent conflicts between members were eradicated. Members were given adequate time and equal opportunities to air out their views, ideas and thoughts on the subject matter. It further instilled mutual understanding and effective cooperation.

Decision making

The decision-making process on certain critical issues pertaining the group were accomplished through intelligent discussions coordinated by the leaders[ CITATION Dan11 l 2057 ]. Likewise, the appropriate agreed upon decisions with adequate, valid reasons were chosen and inaugurated. The leaders had the final say on heated debates concerning a certain decision to be madeon the team.

Participation

The leaders reprimanded the members who did not participate in the group’s activities and conventions. Each member was mandated to provide their views and thoughts pertaining certain issues influencing their contribution and existence in the group to identify the level of expectation they had of the group. It provided an easy understanding of each member’s capabilities, abilities, weaknesses and strengths thus being an advantage to the group and other participants. Likewise, it assisted in the division of work, as the strengths and weaknesses of each partaker were known[ CITATION Fil12 l 2057 ].

Change management.

The group was open to change in the decisions if backed with better reasons and supporting information.

In a case of the inefficiency of a particular leader in executing their mandated roles, demotion was allowed. The demotion was undertaken with the agreement of the members and a more responsible and viable individual elevated to the seat.

Personal reflection

Throughout the group sessions, there are lots of things to be learned that are important to one’s development career-wise. The team-based experience influences the teamwork skills portrayed by a person positively. Personally, it influenced the various skills and abilities stated below:

  • It improved my performance and productivity as I participate in group and team work.

  • It enabled me enhanced and develop interpersonal skills that would guide my interactions with other people with a different calibre.

  • It further helped me understand myself through knowing my strengths and weaknesses that may influence my participation in social and career activities.

  • The group work enhanced my team working skills such as working with others and leadership.

  • Through the group discussions, I developed a new method and approach of tackling and resolving differences.

  • Also, I received both social encouragement and support to undertake risks without fear and accept the challenges encountered.

  • Likewise, it enhanced my skill of the delegation of duties, responsibilities and roles.

Conclusion

Group dynamics proves to be the best way of undertaking difficult situations and tasks encountered. A group is created by the pooling of individuals with similar objectives to a central point to pursue their objectives and goals as a union. The provide efficiency and a higher productive due to the collection of ideas, thoughts and information from the parties involved in the group. Further, it improves the speed used in tackling the issues, and great a much higher sense of accomplishment.

Nevertheless, the challenges are encountered while pursuing tasks and goals through a team. The challenges could accrue due to undefined leadership, and inadequate communication. The challenges that may be encountered include inherent conflicts and leadership wrangles. Besides, other challenges could include ineffective communication, unequal participation, and competition on an individual level. The challenges may prove destructive to the effectiveness of the groups. However, certain approaches have to be embraced to curb inefficiency that can amass due to the challenges experienced. The approaches could include a selection of leaders, the employment of regular effective communication and reasonable allocation time to each member to air out their thoughts, views and ideas.

Group dynamics and it application to solve tasks arevital. It improves a person’s teamwork skills. It further improves communications and interpersonal skills. Lastly, it provides a means of acquiring a new approach to solving tasks and problems encountered in life.

References

Blanchard, K. H., 2007. Go Team!. San Francisco: Berrett-Koehler Publishers.

Cook, S., 2009. Building a High-Performance Team. Ely: IT Governance Pub.

Films for the Humanities and Sciences, 2012. Understanding Group Dynamics. New York: Films Media Group.

Frey, N. & Fisher, D., 2009. Productive group work. Alexandria: Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development.

Hadler, G., 2013. Solving Problems using a group. Available at:
[Online] http://www.itseducation.asia/groups.htm [Accessed 29 October 2015].

Johnson, R., 2015. Styles of Leadership. Available at
[Online] http://smallbusiness.chron.com/5-different-types-leadership-styles-17584.htmlhttp://smallbusiness.chron.com/5-different-types-leadership-styles-17584.html

Levi, D., 2011. Group dynamics for teams. Los Angeles: Calif Pub.

Mind Tools Editorial Team, 2015. Leadership Styles. Available at:
[Online] https://www.mindtools.com/pages/article/newLDR_84.htm [Accessed 30 October 2015].

Nguyen, S., 2010. Common Problems Teams Encounter. Available at:
[Online] http://workplacepsychology.net/2010/12/17/eight-common-problems-teams-encounter/ [Accessed 29 October 2015].

The University of Queensland Press, 2015. Group work to Students. Available at:
[Online] http://www.uq.edu.au/student-services/learning/problems-associated-group-work [Accessed 29 October 2015].

University of Waterloo Press, 2015. Teamwork skills. Available at:
[Online] https://uwaterloo.ca/centre-for-teaching-excellence/teaching-resources/teaching-tips/tips-students/being-part-team/teamwork-skills-being-effective-group-member [Accessed 29 October 2015].

Weimer, M., 2013. Things Students Can Learn through Group Work. Available at:
[Online] http://www.facultyfocus.com/articles/teaching-professor-blog/five-things-students-can-learn-through-group-work/ [Accessed 29 October 2015].