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EMSA National Coordinators Meeting Romania 2012

Team building Participants handout Irena Ĺ oljid, IAAS


EMSA National Coordinators Meeting Romania 2012 CONTENT 1. Comparing groups to team........................................................................3 1.1. What is a group? .....................................................................................3 1.2. How is a team different?.......................................................................3 1.3. Do all groups need to become teams?..............................................4 2. Team stages.....................................................................................................6 2.1. Forming..........................................................................................................6 2.2. Storming.........................................................................................................7 2.3. Norming........................................................................................................11 2.4. Performing-The Final Team growth stage.........................................12 2.5. Strategies chart...........................................................................................14 3.TIPS and HINTS................................................................................................16 3.1.Hints.................................................................................................................16 3.2. Tips...................................................................................................................19


EMSA National Coordinators Meeting Romania 2012 1. Comparing Groups to Teams 1.1. What is a group? A group is a collection of people who come together to communicate, tackle a problem or coordinate an event. They’re a group and not a team because they are missing a number of key ingredients present in any true team. These missing ingredients include: • A common goal that members view as more important than their individual goals • Clear rules and norms created and used by the team to manage interpersonal relations • Clear roles and responsibilities so that members know they’re linked • Clear accountabilities so that everyone understands who is responsible for what • A method for frequently evaluation how team members are doing and a method for giving and receiving feedback so that the team can constantly improve. In a group, members pursue their own individual purpose. For this reason, group members tend to exhibit “I”- centered behavior when debating. This generally makes a group more competitive and argumentative than a true team. When each person strives to get what’s best for him or herself, conflict tend to be handled in a more adversarial manner. Another major difference is that group members usually don’t have linked roles and relationships outside the group’s meetings. Members typically have separate job descriptions and only come together to share information and make decisions that affect them all.

1.2. How is a team different? In contrast to a group, a team is a collection of people who come together to achieve a clear and compelling common goal that they have participated in defining. To the members of a true team, that goal is more important than their own individual pursuits. It’s this factor that gives a team its cohesion. A team also creates a set of norms or rules of conduct that define the team’s culture. While a group may be run by a single person, a team runs itself by rules created by the members. Team members also cooperate on work planning and coordinate roles. Their work lives are linked together and they depend on each other. When team members have differences of opinion they tend to debate the ideas rather than argue points of view. They aren’t out to gain personal victory, but to arrive at the best solution for the good of the whole team.


EMSA National Coordinators Meeting Romania 2012 While the members of a group generally have only the level of authority inherent in their position within the organization, teams seek and attain higher levels of empowerment. Drawing on each other to make better decisions, a team often evolves toward greater autonomy in managing its work. There is a definite sequence of stages a team goes through in order to ultimately reach highperformance levels. A group does not tend to follow this pattern. One reason is that team membership is permanent. While a group can operate with members coming and going, the members of a team need to be more consistent. In fact, if a member leaves a team, it may need to briefly return to the forming stage in order to integrate its new member. Whether teams are created to stay together for a year or indefinitely, they tend to develop more trust and openness than most groups do. Members have bought into the idea of working together and have made a commitment to common action. This helps create the comfort that many people need before they can freely express their ideas and concerns

A Group Individual “I” focus Operate by external rules of order Operate alone Individuals have position authority Meet irregularly Focus on information sharing Have a fixed leader Fight to be right Are closed May like each other

A Team Collective “ we” focus Operate by own set of team Have linked roles Teams seek and gain mutual trust Meet regularly Focus on problem solving Share leadership role Debate to make sound decisions Open and trusting Share strong bond

1.3. Do all groups need to become teams? The simple answer is no. While teams have some distinct advantages over groups, not all groups should be developed into teams. A group should stay a group if: • The members will only be together for a short time • It’s only supposed to do one simple task • It’s purpose is solely to share information


EMSA National Coordinators Meeting Romania 2012 • Different members come to every meeting • There’s no regular or frequent pattern of meetings • There’s no real need for linked roles or a compelling common goal • All of the work is best planned and managed by isolated individuals • There’s no support for teamwork in the organization • Leadership styles are controlling and directive. Conversely, it’s distinctive advantageous to do teambuilding with any group if: • There’s a need to create a high level of cohesion and commitment to a common goal • There’s an ongoing task for the group to accomplish • A consistent set of people will be working closely over an extended period. Even when a group isn’t destined to become a team, it’s a good idea to take some tips from rudimentary team building, and get members to at least act like a team while they’re working together.


EMSA National Coordinators Meeting Romania 2012 2. Team Stages If you’re working with a true team you need to realize that teams develop through four stages. Each of these stages has unique characteristics and must be facilitated differently.

2.1. Forming Forming is the first stage of team development. It starts when members are first brought together to achieve a specific goal. In the forming stage members tend to be optimistic and expectations are usually high. Art the same time there’s also some understandable anxiety about fitting in and being able to achieve the task. Despite these early anxieties, forming is generally a “honeymoon” for most teams. Members of forming teams are usually shy. They hold back until they know each other better. People are guarded with their comments. No one is sure exactly how he or she fits into the new team. This stage is also characterized by an overdependence on the leader. Members want to be given a clear mandate, structure and parameters. Forming can last anywhere from a few weeks to severa months, depending on how often the team meets and how quickly the team completes the “team formation” agenda. Your role here: When leading a new team you need to be especially friendly, open and optimistic to help ease everyone anxieties. Here are some things that you can do: • Make sure there’s clarity about the mandate and parameters for the new team • Help the members collaborate to create a goal that achieves the stated mandate • Break the ice with activities that create comfort and disclosure • Be encouraging and empowering • Help members develop norms or rules of conduct • Identify tasks and specify roles and responsibilities • Provide structure for meetings • Set a tone of openness and trust • Provide training in decision making and effective behaviors.


EMSA National Coordinators Meeting Romania 2012 Creating Team Norms: A major difference between groups and teams is that teams have clear rules set by the team’s members. These rules are used by the members to control their own and peers’ behaviors. Developing rules is essential at the forming stage. Once they’re in place, the rules are posted, referred to when behaviors become less than desirable and amended as the team matures. Rules are always developed by team members. It only makes sense that bringing in rules from outside and asking members to adhere to them they will be largely ineffective. Members will be more likely to follow rules that they’ve created together. Rules will vary somewhat with each team, but these are some of the most common: • We will listen actively to all ideas • Everyone’s opinion counts • No interrupting while someone is talking • We will be supportive rather than judgmental • Each member will take responsibility for the work of the team • We will give constructive feedback directly and openly • When we have a difference of opinion we’ll debate the facts of the situation and not personalities • We will respect team meetings times by starting on time

2.2. Storming Storming is a normal and expected stage of team development. In this stage, members experience a discrepancy between their initial hopes for the team and the realities of working together. Conflict arises and everyone knows that the “honeymoon” is over. Storming can take place for a variety of reasons including: Interpersonal conflict: People discover that they like some members but dislike others. Cliques can form. Two people can start to clash over ideas or personal styles. Some people may not be pulling their weight. Others may talk too much or try to dominate.


EMSA National Coordinators Meeting Romania 2012 Lack of skills: There may be little listening and encouragement among team members due to lack of training in interpersonal skills. Members may be unfamiliar with how to manage differences of opinion, so that potential debates end as fights. People often lack skills in such things as problem analysis, how to control a meeting, or giving and receiving feedback. As a result, they’re basically unable to manage the team dynamics. Ineffective leadership: The team leader may be too controlling while the members are trying to flex their muscles. Conversely, the leader may be too laisez faire on certain topics. Members may not like how the leader runs the meetings, or offers his or her assistance. Sometimes leaders have low personal credibility, poor interpersonal skills or are dishonest in their dealings with the team. Problems with the task: This task may be too difficult for the team. Work loads may be unrealistic. Members often resist taking on more power and responsibility. The task itself may be unclear or the members may not have bought into the task. During the storming phase it's common for members to feel dissatisfied with their dependence on someone else's authority, most often the team leader's. It's notunusual for members to challenge or even reject the leader at this stage. Power struggles can also take place among members who may be competing for authority. Because interpersonal squabbles and conflict distract the team from focusing on its main tasks, productivity usually plummets during storming. There's a feeling of ineffectiveness, and meetings where little is decided. Frustration increases. With this comes a corresponding decline in morale. People start to wonder if the team is a good idea, since so much time seems to be wasted. When you are leading a team in storming, be careful not to take this personally. Check to see if this is what you're thinking: This is awful. Things are falling apart! They hate me! I hate them! I can't trust them! Who do they think they are? I'll fix them!


EMSA National Coordinators Meeting Romania 2012 In order to survive storming, you need to adopt a more positive mind-set. This includes believing: Storming is OK. It’s a normal stage. They don't hate me; they're just storming. They don't hate each other; they're just storming. This is energy I've got to channel into solutions. We'll get through this together. Signs of Storming Use the following checklist to raise your awareness of storming. It can help you determine whether your team is in this sensitive state. • there's a tendency toward arguing viewpoints instead of debating ideas • people don't listen actively or support each other's ideas • the team is divided into factions • members vie for power with and against each other • members confront the leader in an overly emotional way • meetings go in circles; little is achieved • members talk about each other outside of meetings • there's a tendency to complain, and "Yeah but" most ideas • people don't like coming to the meetings. The/re often late, absent • no one wants to take responsibility, follow-through is poor • some people start to "clam up"; they no longer participate • members go to each other after meetings to air their concerns about the team • the team isn't achieving its work goals • there's no attention to "process" or how the team functions • interpersonal aspects overshadow getting the job done • people say the team makes them feel drained of energy • people no longer think the team is a good idea.


EMSA National Coordinators Meeting Romania 2012 Your role here Storming is the most difficult stage to facilitate because feelings are running high. You need to handle the situation carefully in order to remain absolutely neutral, and not take sides in any debates. Storming also demands a high degree of assertiveness on your part. So, how do you cope? • expect and accept tension as normal • stay totally neutral and calm • create an environment in which people can safely express feelings • honestly and openly admit that there's conflict • help members identify issues and solve them together • invite input and feedback • make interventions to correct dysfunctional behaviors • assertively referee heated discussions • train members in group skills • facilitate communication. When a team storms there are always two approaches for every situation: BEST ACTIONS


• Surface all problems to get them on the table to be • Ignore problems solved • Create norms that make it safe to discuss problems. • Avoid all arguments Encourage members to debate ideas in a non-personal way • Offer clear options and encourage members to take • Take back control control • Help members identify strategies and action plans

• Tell people what to do

• Help members identify their problems and resolve • Take a punitive attitude them


EMSA National Coordinators Meeting Romania 2012

2.3. Norming While norming is usually described as a team stage, it's actually a transitional step that moves a team from storming into performing. In norming, the team confronts its problems and resolves them. The resolutions that everyone agrees to become the new norms for the team. During norming, members face their issues, accept feedback and act on it. This results in improvement in the team's performance.

There are four main norming techniques you can use:

• Survey Feedback: Hand out the appropriate survey for the problem your group is experiencing: conflict management, team effectiveness, meeting effectiveness. Feed results back to members for their analysis. Help them identify problems and generate solutions. • Force-Field Analysis: Generate a discussion in which members analyze what's working on the team and what's not. Generate solutions for each item identified as not working. • Personal Feedback: Help members give each other personal feedback about what they're doing that is effective and what they could do better • Setting New Norms: Help members review their existing norms and make the additions needed to manage the current conflict situation. Your role: If you're leading a group in storming, you need to instigate norming by providing methods for giving and receiving feedback. In norming it's essential that you be totally neutral and focuses on managing process.


EMSA National Coordinators Meeting Romania 2012 Key strategies include: • encouraging problem identification and problem solving • inviting input and feedback • offering training and support to team members • supporting members while they make improvements • further sharing of power • mediating in personality clashes • coaching and counseling individuals • encouraging others to take on leadership roles.

2.4. Performing – The Final Team Growth Stage If norming is managed successfully, the team should enter into a period of improved performance. By this stage, conflicts have been resolved and members will be ready to focus on their work without distraction. Everyone wins here. Productivity goes up. So does morale.

In high-performing teams: • everyone shares power by rotating leadership roles • the official leader is treated as a valued member • everyone behaves in a supportive way • all members take turns facilitating • the team evaluates and corrects continuously • members feel committed and bonded • decisions made are typically high-quality • time and resources are used efficiently • conflicts are seen as constructive debates, rarely getting heated or emotional.


EMSA National Coordinators Meeting Romania 2012 All performing teams have: 1. A clear team goal that has been created by the team and that dovetails with organizational targets. 2. Established ground rules or norms that are adjusted regularly and used to monitor and improve the team. 3. Detailed work plans that define tasks, clarify roles and responsibilities, lay out a schedule of events and specify the performance expectations of the team 4. Clearly defined empowerment so that members know which decisions they can make. 5. Clear and open communication between members and with those outside the team. 6. Well-defined decision-making procedures that help the team know which decision-making approach to use. 7. Beneficial team behaviors that reflect good interpersonal skills and positive intent to make the team successful. 8. Balanced participation so that everyone is heard and the team's decision making isn't dominated by one or two strong personalities. 9. Awareness of group process along with regular initiatives to improve how the team functions. 10. Well-planned and executed meetings with detailed agendas. Your role: You'll find that the easiest group to lead is a high-performance team whose members have learned to manage their own conflict and who have highly developed interpersonal skills. But that doesn't mean your job's over yet. In these situations you need to: • collaborate with members on meeting designs to get their input • share facilitation duties • offer expertise to the team • help the team reward and celebrate success • offer to observe and give feedback to further improve the team.


EMSA National Coordinators Meeting Romania 2012 2.5. Strategies Chart STAGE Group



May be strangers 'I'-focused Individuals Lack of compelling goal No norms Roles loosely linked Individual accountabilities

Create a common goal Create and use norms Clarify and link roles Define accountabilities Teach interpersonal skills Encourage participation Evaluate meeting effectiveness Provide clear process Main Strategy- to provide structure and support





Members unsure Create a common goal Uncertainty Create and use norms Low trust Define accountabilities Need direction Clarify roles and responsibilities Commitment low Provide clear process Group skills unrefined Encourage participation Overdependence on leader Evaluate team effectiveness Main Strategy – Build team spirit and comfort while providing lots of structure for activities

STAGE Storming

KEY ELEMENTS Conflict emerges Frustration sets in Animosities develop Cliques form Leader is rejected Power struggles Emotional arguing


Stay neutral and calm Create safety for expressing feelings Honestly admit there's conflict Help members identify and solve issues Invite input and feedback Make interventions Assertively referee conflict Teach interpersonal and conflict management skills Encourage communication Main Strategy – To listen, address conflict, referee assertively and resolve issues collaboratively


EMSA National Coordinators Meeting Romania 2012 STAGE Norming



Offer methods for feedback Help solve problems Invite personal feedback Offer further training Support members while they make improvements Share power Mediate personality clashes Coach and counsel individuals Share the leadership role Main Strategy – to support team improvement efforts and encourage member empowerment

STAGE Performing

Members „own“ problems Conflicts are resolved Power issues are resolved Team redefines its norms Performance problems corrected Create empowerment plans



High productivity Collaborate with members on Conflicts managed by members process Commitment to goal high Rotate facilitation and Roles and responsibilities clear leadership duties Members behave in a facilitative Offer your expertise manner Help the team recognize and Team continuously improves self celebrate success Members feel committed and bonded Main strategy – Share leadership responsibilities, collaborate, act as a resource


EMSA National Coordinators Meeting Romania 2012 3. Tips & hints 3.1. Hints Hints for keeping team meetings on the right track 1. Follow a predetermined agenda that's been distributed to participants ahead of time. If each participant knows ahead of time what will be discussed, everyone will be more likely to stick to the topics at hand. 2. Open the meeting by stating its purpose and objectives. Explain how the meeting's purpose relates to the team's overall goals and what you hope to accomplish through the meeting. 3. Let everyone have a say. All opinions, suggestions, and constructive criticism need to be welcome. Show support for the expression of views with which you may disagree. Tell members that they will not be censured for an unpopular opinion, as long as they're trying to accomplish the team's goals. Try to encourage others to explore such opinions instead of dismissing them out of hand. 4. Gain closure on each issue. Using the decision-making method team members have agreed to (majority rule, consensus, small group, or leader with input), ensure that each issue up for decision is resolved during the meeting. 5. Leave time at the end of each meeting for new business or unscheduled items. By carving out time for new business or unscheduled items at the end of the meeting, you help participants stay focused on the agenda during the early part of the meeting. 6. End the meeting with an action and communication plan. A good action and communication plan specifies: • What got decided at the meeting and what tasks need to be done as a result of the meeting? • Who has responsibility for those tasks? • When the tasks must be completed? 7. Distribute the plan. Send the action and communication plan out to all meeting participants and to people who weren't at the meeting but need to be informed of the outcome.


EMSA National Coordinators Meeting Romania 2012 Hints for resolving conflicts

1. Diagnose the root cause of the conflict. • Listen to what the parties are saying. Is the cause a particular behavior, a clash of personalities, or a situation? What seems to be really at stake for the members in conflict? 2. Negotiate a resolution. • Find the right tone and setting for conflict resolution. Don't take sides—moderate the discussion. Consider scripting what you plan to say, and anticipating how others will respond. • Work with the disagreeing parties or the entire team to identify and evaluate alternative solutions to the problem. Encourage people to find common ground and explore new possibilities. 3. Encourage active listening. • Allow the disagreeing parties to voice their feelings, and ask questions about why they feel as they do. • Encourage members to manage their emotions and to talk rationally about what can be done to solve the problem. • Ask people to behave in ways that demonstrate interest in what others are saying. For example, avoid doodling, fidgeting, and interrupting while others are speaking. Model active listening behaviors, such as asking questions that encourage speakers to expand on their points, or referring back to points made earlier and building on those ideas. 4. Remind team members to forgive. • Encourage forgiveness by practicing forgiveness yourself. Don't hold a grudge. Don't harbor ill will after a conflict has been resolved. And remember to apologize when you've done something wrong.


EMSA National Coordinators Meeting Romania 2012 Hints for evaluating your team

1. Measure more than just goals—assess group processes as well. Members are juggling many tasks to reach the team's goals. How you achieve to those goals can be just as important as the end result, especially if the team must work together on an ongoing basis. Observe how the team communicates, how it deals with adversity, how it resolves conflicts, and what other methods it uses to reach its goals. • Select from several methods for assessing the quality of your team's processes—such as benchmarking (comparing the team's process to that of other, similar teams in the company), outside observation (having an external consultant objectively evaluate the team's processes), ongoing team discussions about process, and project debriefing sessions (identifying what went well and what didn't during completion of a task). • Also, be sure to solicit outside opinions—for example, customer satisfaction surveys may provide useful insight into how well a team is functioning.

2. Identify problems or obstacles that stand in the way of team progress. • For example, does the team lack a sense of identity (as evidenced by poor collaboration, information sharing, and joint decision making)? Are members getting embroiled in interpersonal conflicts? Is team participation low and creative thinking lacking? • Whatever the problems or obstacles are, you need to pinpoint them before you can address them.

3. Set up evaluation milestones. • Make sure you provide feedback at regular intervals throughout the project. This can help you correct problems as soon as you diagnose them. • A debriefing session after a project is completed can help your team take stock of what went well and what didn't, and identify lessons to apply to future projects.


EMSA National Coordinators Meeting Romania 2012 4. Help team members evaluate each other. The most constructive criticism will come from other team members, because they are most familiar with each other's work. But proceed gently here: Some team members may feel uncomfortable evaluating their peers. • To get started, try having everyone share his or her opinion of how effective the team has been and what it needs to do to improve. • If there is a general consensus about these issues, move on to feedback about individual members—have each person begin with a self-assessment. • Be prepared to handle conflict, anger, or hurt feelings when members start evaluating each other. 5. Evaluate yourself and your leadership skills. • Watch for signs of poor leadership in your team—such as low participation, an inability among team members to state why the team's work is important; or a tendency for you to take on more projects and responsibilities than team members are taking on. • If you see these symptoms, ask yourself whether you're trying to be too much of a traditional boss (telling your team what to do and how to do it) or whether you're taking too much of a hands-off approach (because you believe you've empowered your team). • Look for ways to balance "bossing" with "empowering," such as spelling out the team's objectives but then lettgin members decide how to reach those objectives

3.2. Tips Tips for building team performance • Establish an urgent and worthwhile purpose and a clear direction. • Select team members on the basis of their knowledge, experience, skills, and attitude—not their personalities. • Ensure that roles and responsibilities are clear. • Be alert to what happens in the first few team meetings, including actions taken


EMSA National Coordinators Meeting Romania 2012 • Set clear rules of behavior. • Establish immediate performance-oriented tasks and goals. • Seek out team members' opinions and ideas—and use them. • Encourage members to talk often about the team's goals. • Keep providing new facts and information to create challenge. • Use positive feedback, recognition, and rewards to encourage team members. • Cultivate an atmosphere in which everyone feels recognized and comfortable making contributions.. Tips for improving team communication • Use pronouns—such as "we," "us," and "our"—when referring to your team. • Actively solicit all team members' views. • Use meeting time wisely; for example, by distributing required informational materials well ahead of a meeting, you can focus meeting time on problem solving, not information sharing. • Use questions to open space for dialogue. For example, "Can you tell me what makes this issue important to you?", "What are your reservations or concerns?", or "Let's stop for a minute and revisit our objectives (or examine our process)." • Seek clarification by asking, "I don't understand. Could you explain what you're saying in another way?" • Don't interrupt team members who have less power than others in the organization. • Consider using an outside facilitator to diagnose and address communication problems. Tips for making the most of conflict • Encourage team members to listen to one another and consider different viewpoints— perhaps by inviting two people to switch positions and argue for the side they previously opposed. • Suggest that team members objectively question one another's assumptions. • Make it clear that you want contentious issues aired, and that anyone can point out an issue without retribution.


EMSA National Coordinators Meeting Romania 2012 • Even if only one person thinks there's a problem that needs discussing, acknowledge the issue that he or she has raised. • Remind people of the norms the team has agreed on for how members treat each other. • Encourage members who raise concerns to describe the issue as specifically as possible. • Keep the discussion impersonal by discussing what is impeding progress, not who is "to blame." • If the issue involves a team member's behavior, encourage the person who identified the problem to explain how the behavior affects him or her, rather than making assumptions about what's motivating the behavior. • End the discussion with concrete suggestions for improvement, if not a solution to the problem. • If the conversation ends up going nowhere because the subject at hand is too sensitive, consider adjourning the discussion until a specified later date so that people can cool down. • Consider bringing in a facilitator for especially heated conversations. Tips for balancing bossing with empowering • Clarify the team's objectives, but leave it up to team members to decide how to achieve those objectives. • Identify informal leaders within your team by assessing their behavior and the degree of deference they receive from others. • Ensure that informal leaders understand the team's goals, know why those goals are important, and accept those goals as their own. • Cultivate positive relationships with informal leaders in your team, and use those relationships to communicate the big picture to others. • Encourage team members to share and rotate leadership among themselves. For example, give people ample opportunities to head up ad hoc task forces, arrange off-site meetings, and so on. • Hold team members accountable for results and quality of team processes. • Display passionate commitment to the team's mission to encourage the same among team members. • Consider getting coaching to identify ways to improve the boss/empowerment balance. Or ask the team sponsor for his or her guidance.


EMSA National Coordinators Meeting Romania 2012

"Many of us are more capable than some of us . . . but none of us is as capable as all of us!!" Tom Wilson