Emil Păun and Anca Nedelcu

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V. 4. Team Management

Working in a team, accompanied with a proper management is certainly one of most efficient ways of reaching adequately the proposed goals of an organization. But the construction of the “perfect working team” is not so facile, requiring a good combination of right individuals with a selection of desired abilities and features.

Additionally to that, teams develop while working together; it takes time, energy and effort, responsibility to develop an efficient and functional team. As it is underlined in the “Project Management Manual (1997, p.288), for teams to perform effectively it requires time; time for team members to be acquainted with each other, to assess each other’s strengths and weaknesses and to reflect whether they can identify with the values, beliefs, attitudes and general style of their colleagues, individuals or the whole group. For describing this process of developing an effective team, the Human Resources Group at Cranfield School of Management identified four distinct stages from a group of individuals to a coherent and cohesive unit:

  • Forming – the stage when the individuals need to become acquainted to each other;

  • Storming – after gaining confidence a certain desire of leading often induces infighting amongst the members;

  • Norming– the “storm” is followed by a stage of establishment of specific norms;

  • Performing – the stage when the group becomes more cohesive and a greater professional closeness begins to emerge.

Another important issue about the efficiency of the teams is their dependency on the deliberate will of recognizing the diversity of team members and valorizing this in a better possible way. The determining factors will be the team's ability to understand diversity, value it, and manage it. For this purpose it is necessary that each member of the team „to find his/her place” in the team’s structure, to receive tasks and reasonability fitting their personality, abilities, skills.

It is axiomatically that teams need to know and exploit each member’s skills. One of the starting point for this equilibrated distribution of tasks relating to personal profile of the employees is the Margerison-McCann Team Management Wheel, highlighting different teams types:



Supporter, helper, tolerant; A collector of information; Dislikes being rushed; Knowledgeable; Flexible


Imaginative; Future-oriented; Enjoys complexity; Creative; Likes research work


Persuader, "seller"; Likes varied, exciting, stimulating work; Easily bored; Influential and outgoing


Analytical and objective; Developer of ideas; Enjoys prototype or project work; Experimenter


Organizes and implements; Quick to decide; Results-oriented; Sets up systems; Analytical


Practical; Production-oriented; Likes schedules and plans; Pride in reproducing goods and services; Values effectiveness and efficiency


Strong on control; Detail-oriented; Low need for people contact; An inspector of standards and procedures


Conservative, loyal, supportive; Personal values important; Strong sense of right and wrong; Work motivation based on purpose

Another important study going in the same direction of describing specific team’s roles is Meredith Belbin’s research conducted at Henley Management Centre. After examining patterns of behavior displayed by group members, he established the following roles:

  • The chairman, presiding over the team and coordinating its efforts;

  • The shaper, the one who can replace the leader in its absence;

  • The plant, the “idea man”;

  • The resource investigator, the one who brings new contacts and developments;

  • The company worker, the person who turns the ideas into manageable tasks;

  • The team worker, the one who holds the team together;

  • The finisher, the one who checks the details.

Therefore, the diversity of teams members facilitates their efficiency and not at all their passive homogeneity. As teams are not about being the same, and good team work is not about everyone thinking and operating the same all the time. Additionally, efficient teams respond to the following views:

  • Proper sizing of teams – research on effective teamwork suggests that with more then ten to fifteen people a group finds it hard to operate as team, being more difficult to communicate, to share responsibilities;

  • Commitment and involvement – all team members understand the goals and are committed to achieving them.

  • A climate of comfort and trust – the teams creates a climate where people are comfortable and informal, are able to take the risks, are sensitive to the needs of others.

  • Conflict management – conflict and disagreement are considered natural an dealt with: the emphasis is on problem resolution, not personalities (Abrignani, Gomes, de Vilder, 2000, pag.80).

A cumulative approach of such conditions can facilitate the effective work of the team as a whole as well as of the individuals composing it. In this way, the management of people, together with the management of time or financial and material resources can reach an effective and adequate stage of achievement.


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© Universitatea din Bucureşti 2003. All rigths reserved. No part of the text may be reproduced in any form without written permission of the University of Bucharest, except for short quotations with the indication of the website adress and the web page. This book was first published by Editura Universităţii din Bucureşti ISBN: 973-575-815-6
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