Team Psychologyimage006

  • Our effectiveness as a team is low; meetings are poorly prepared and run without much discipline.
  • We are extremely cautious to each other; we seem tacitly to agree not to disagree.
  • We are not clear on our team task and thus not on each’s individual task either.
  • There is a lot of indirect feedback, matters are being discussed in the corridors.
  • As a team we behave in a way no one of us individually wants to behave.
  • As a manager I seldom receive any reply from the team and for all and nothing they ask permission.

Teams are in a constant state of paradox. In order to be a good team individuals must (dare to) differ and raise their profile with knowledge and experience. At the same time, however, they must give up some of that individuality for the benefit of the whole.

When does a team function below its potential? A team sometimes works on its tasks and achieves its goals. This works best when roles in the team are clear, the team manages its boundaries well and leadership supports all this in the appropriate way. Unfortunately a team operates from time to time in a different mode. It functions ineffectively, only partly working on its task and as a result of inadequate management of boundaries does not achieve its goals. Leadership is problematic and it is not clear who is doing what. Despite of repeated agreements and best intentions the team remains functioning below its desired level and potential.

Unconscious and hidden processes below the surface are affecting a group or team in its daily functioning there above. They link to the developmental stage of the team. They stem from the nature of the work or from the context in which the team must operate. Awareness of these unconscious influences helps a team to move on and function more effectively.

Pim Stafleu ORGANISATION SUPPORT is specialised in team psychology and supporting groups and teams in relation to group development issues and unconscious group processes.

If you want to know more about the possibilities and benefits of team psychology for your team, please go to the contact page.


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