Teams go through stages as they become acquainted with each other and establish trust. These stages lead to improved team performance.
When to use
Teams should proactively plan to go through the team building stages whenever a team is formed, or whenever the team membership changes. A team that has been in place for several projects or activities can very quickly work through the stages.
Trust is a key enabler of high performing teams. Team building approaches can help to build trust. The presence of trust – where people, ask and give help, admit mistakes and apologize for them, take risk, accept inputs from others and give others the benefit of the doubt – will lead to a far better level of team performance than when there is an absence of trust and the opposite conditions exist. There are two methodologies often used to steer a team through the stages of team building and the creation of trust.
Team Building Stages
- Forming – getting to know each other and building a positive working environment.
- Storming – addressing power and control issues among team members.
- Norming – establishing a set of team practices and gaining agreement on how to resolve the conflicts
- Performing – with the establishment of norms, the team is now able to routinely solve problems and achieve the team goals.
- Goals – clarify team and personal goals to establish alignment.
- Reality – face the reality of team strengths and weaknesses, providing feedback on both positive and negative attributes.
- Options – consider options to achieve the goal; don’t stay stuck in the past.
- Way forward – select a viable option, plan and execute the plan.
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