A proven way to build a successful business team is to assemble a group with a stellar mix of knowledge and expertise. Get to know the strengths and personalities of existing team members to create an effective dynamic. If necessary, seek out new team members to strengthen your lineup.
Team dynamics are those psychological forces influencing the direction of your team’s performance and behavior. Those dynamics are created by the personalities involved and how they interact. Understanding a team’s dynamics can alert you to how successful it might be.
Kurt Lewin, a social psychologist and change management expert, first described group, or team dynamics in 1939.
The term means to understand the individuals that make up a team, a method of exploring behavior and the reasons for that behavior, Lewin explained.
In group dynamics, he said, we recognize the abilities of an individual and how they will interact with a group. His work is considered central to good management practices.
Positive team dynamics occur when team members trust each other, work collectively, and hold each other accountable. When a team has a positive dynamic, its members are more successful and there is less chance of conflict.
A team with poor dynamics includes people whose behavior disrupts work flow and results in wrong choices, poor decision-making or no decision-making at all. Poor dynamics leave the team more vulnerable to conflicts.
Be an effective leader
An effective manager must also be an effective team leader who gets to know employees well enough to pair them successfully for projects, University of Notre Dame Professor Michael Crant teaches. “When you get these types of people together… you get the magic of teams.”
Crant, the Mary Jo and Richard M. Kovacevich Professor of Excellence in Leadership Instruction at the Notre Dame’s Mendoza College of Business, is an expert in proactive business management. One of the classes he teaches online is Critical Management Skills.
Find out if that magic exists among your team by asking previous supervisors or colleagues about your team members to gain insight in to their work ethics and personality traits. Looking at past performance reviews also helps gather insights about how the individual team members can cohesively work together toward a common goal.
Another quick way to gain such knowledge is to have team members complete a background and interest survey.
Half of the survey can be work-related and the other half personal. It can include career goals, ways to improve a team and previous business experience, along with favorite vacation spots, pets and hobbies.