About this lesson
Businesses often use teams to accomplish work. Business teams are used whenever there is a set of business activities that are related by a common goal and are greater than one person can accomplish.
Businesses often use teams to accomplish work. There are categories of business teams, such as functional teams and project teams that have unique characteristics.
When to use
Business teams are used whenever there is a set of business activities that are related by a common goal and are greater than one person can accomplish. Some organizations conduct all work activities in the context of business teams, some form teams as needed to address specific issues or processes.
Business teams are a group of individuals with complementary skills who work together to accomplish a set of business activities. In this context, business teams are more than just everyone who works for the same organization, it implies that there is cohesion and integrated activities. In essence, the whole is greater than the sum of the parts.
Business Team Characteristics
Business teams will normally have these characteristics:
- A common goal.
- High degree of interdependence.
- Share authority and responsibility for team management.
- Accountability by all for collective performance.
- Shared rewards.
Functional teams are a special case of business teams that operate so as to provide appropriate business support for their function; such as HR, IT, Finance, Operations, or Quality. These teams are normally permanent teams and are comprised of subject matter experts who know how to do the functional work. The team leader acts as coach and facilitator to ensure functional excellence and best practice application. The goal of these teams is almost always functional excellence and customer responsiveness.
Project teams are a special case of business teams that are focused on achieving the project goal. They will normally be temporary teams, only lasting for the duration of the project. These teams often have three roles, project leaders, core team members and extended team members. Project leaders coordinate the core team and integrate all of the project activities. The core team members are the subject matter experts for their aspect of the project (not the project leader) and they will plan and manage the project activities in their area of responsibility. On large projects, there will be extended team members who work under the direction of the core team member. On small projects, the work is done by the core team member.
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