High-Performance Team Felix E. Rivera MGT/331 Carol Jones September 12 th 2005 Abstract This paper will explain how a group within an organization becomes a high-performance team. It will also examine the impact of demographic characteristics and cultural diversity on group behavior. The paper will try to describe how demographic characteristics and cultural diversity contribute to, or detract from high-performance teams. Introduction There are a number of elements that are necessary for the creation of any team. These include: two or more individuals, a common team goal, and the necessary resources of time, materials, space, and perhaps money needed to accomplish and then sustain the goal.
High Performance teams learn and demonstrate behaviors that are not exhibited by most teams. In most organizations teams are formed to either make decisions or implement decisions. High Performance Teams are expected to both decide how change is to occur, and implementing the change. High Performance Teams need to take this dual role into consideration and choose both individuals who are thought to be leaders and influence rs in the organization and individuals who have varied backgrounds and experience. While High Performance Teams can be implemented to achieve any significant business purpose, they are most often formed to achieve dramatic improvements within the processes.
... organization to create a high performance organization. The high performance business is the one that can create a balance between performance, quality, customer relations and profitability. High performance organizations need high performance team ... and into a high performance team." When differences are regarded as valued resources, as in a truly inclusive environment, individual and group ...
However, High Performance Teams need to take into consideration the effects demographics, and cultural diversity will have on the overall success of the team. From Group to High Performance Team Three key characteristics of High Performance Team building involve trust, respect, and support. Support involves actively keeping an eye on the other team members and demonstrating a willingness to help each other out when help is needed. High Performance teams are always conscious of quality and strive to improve the quality of their teamwork as well as the quality of their output. A common practice for High Performance Teams is to have a leader or manager. The team leader is responsible for teaching team building behavior.
Leaders are also helpful in making certain that the team receives guidance and training as needs arise. Organizations decide to assemble High Performance Teams for different reasons. There are times when organizations are strong in some areas, but very weak in others. A successful organization, who strives to be strong in every aspect of how they run their business, will recruit the right team members from different areas within their organization, and empower them with authority and responsibility. The hope is that when these teams are formed, that they live up to their promise of higher productivity and greater problem solving ability. The U.
S. Army’s Special Forces is the epitome of a High Performance Team. Special Forces Teams are made up of individuals who specialize in guerilla warfare. They are paratrooper qualified, with high security clearances, trained in infiltrating enemy controlled territory, and organize local dissidents for guerilla training. Just like High Performance Teams of civilian organizations, Special Forces team members have to be familiar with each other’s jobs so that if a team member is lost, then the next man can move in and finish it.
No other entity of the Army does this. There are variations of this team, like The Army Rangers, and Delta Force. However, they too are teams formed for a specific area of operation. They key to building a High Performance Team is the personnel chosen.
... are all negative byproducts of diversity. Thus cultural diversity in America is a highly ... levels; due to continuously changing demands organizations are employing more and more people ... these benefits of diversity, work teams will not truly benefit from diversity unless sufficient communication, ... diversity and inclusion effectively, the costs can be high – costs arising due to ‘diversity training ...
They have to be the best in their area, they require little if any supervision, they make sound and timely decisions consistently, and most important they have to be able to trust, support, and respect their team members. When the right people are chosen, the organization should see a vast improvement in productivity, and an increase in problem solving ability where little or none was present. Cultural Diversity’A healthy organization is one in which an obvious effort is made to get people with different backgrounds, skills, and abilities to work together toward the goal or purpose of the organization. While we have not accomplished this at a societal level, it is achievable at an organizational level.’ (John Bruin, Pennsylvania State University, 1996).
Very few organizations in the United States have become effective in incorporating culturally diverse backgrounds, skills, and abilities in their organizational culture.
People from different cultural groups in the U. S. have different perspectives, manifested in their values, attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors. Organizations, if they don’t do so already, should use this to their advantage. University of Michigan professor Taylor Cox suggests four reasons why becoming an effective culturally diverse organization is important. “It enhances the creativity and problem solving abilities of the organization”, “It is morally, ethically, and socially the right thing to do”, “It affects performance of minority group employees”, and “It is a legal requirement” (Taylor Cox, 1994).
Once an organization achieves cultural diversity, previously untapped talent and energy will be focused on achieving organizational goals. It is economically advantageous for an organization to allow diversity to flourish within. In the U. S. , equal opportunity is supported through the Civil Rights Act, Equal Pay Act, Age Discrimination Act, and Americans with Disabilities Act, to name a few. Most importantly, cultural diversity will result in better service to an ever changing clientele.
In the Army, no matter where a soldier is stationed or what his or her job is, they will encounter cultural diversity. A soldier can never say “I’m sure glad I’ll be stationed in North Carolina. There are more people of my kind there.” That never happens. A soldier usually belongs to a team.
... or goals for the organization (businessdictionary.com). The product market performance is also included in an organizations performance. Some tools can ... performance is of high quality. It differs from other evaluations within the company because the performance evaluation “focuses on the organization ... the project. It is up to the organization and the team responsible for the project to keep the budget ...
Within that team, and just like High Performance Teams of the civilian sector, there are people from different ethnic backgrounds, demographics, beliefs, and attitudes. It will be difficult for a soldier in the Army or a person on a High Performance Team to cope with this diversity at first if they have never experienced it. In time he or she will see that in order for team to be successful, different perspectives from a diverse collection of people can help to achieve goals and accomplish missions. Demographics and Teams The baby boom generation is a demographic term for the population born between 1946 and 1964. Data from the 2000 U. S.
Census estimates that the group that holds the “boomer” moniker is made up of at least 82, 826, 479 individuals. The members of this group range from 41 to 59 years old, which means this demographic group, will start leaving the workforce in approximately six years. What does this do to High Performance Teams? A High Performance Team has to have members with experience. Boomers contribute experience along with knowledge and leadership to the overall success of the team. Soon this demographic group will retire, which will cause the High Performance Teams to readjust.
Starting around 2010, a demographic shift will begin, resulting in a large increase in the 65-and-over age group and a decline of the 20-to-64 age group (The U. S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2005).
What organizations have to do to adapt to this changing demographic landscape, and keep their High Performance Teams intact, is to retain older workers, correct gender imbalance in certain positions, use outsourcing and hire more of the newly arriving immigrants.
According to James J. L’Allier, Ph. D. & Kenneth Kolosh (June, 2005), “Older Americans are healthier than ever before and are less likely to want to take a traditional retirement just because they hit the golden age of 66.” This will remedy losing these experienced workers for a few years longer, but other solutions have to be approached. Women’s participation rate in the labor force is starting to reach parity with men’s. This will help greatly in maintaining High Performance Teams when the “boomers” retire.
... diversity is one of the great advantages of high performance teams (Schermerhorn, Hunt & Osborne, 2003 ... Teams Groups or teams can evolve into high performing, extremely effective, useful tools in any organization if developed and managed correctly. Demographic ... is critical to team success. Management should reward team successes. High performance teams are high-energy, collaborative process ...
Now organizations will need to work smarter to attract and retain qualified workers, regardless of gender. American organizations also have looked toward immigration and, more recently, outsourcing to other countries to meet their labor needs. Although this trend will undoubtedly continue to help fill the baby boomer gap, organizations may start to experience increased difficulty attracting skilled labor from these alternative sources. Why? Countries that organizations use for outsourcing also have “boomers.” The same thing that is affecting the American labor market and High Performance Teams is affecting other countries as well: old age. However, this doesn’t seem to affect the Army’s workforce. The normal retirement time frame for soldiers is after 20 years of service.
There is always a steady flow of recruits coming in, and the average age of retirement in the Army is 42 years old. High Performance Teams in the Army do not suffer from changes in the country’s demographic landscape because of the turnover rate and promotions. Conclusion High Performance Teams are a very important part of an organization. The person in charge of putting together this high performance team has to take several things into account for it to be successful.
Cultural diversity and demographics hold a big stake in this process. The make up of this team relies heavily on the team member’s ages, gender, position, number of years in position, and cultural diversity. Managers have to find the perfect combination of all these factors then teach and implement team building behavior amongst the members. Training and guidance is also vital to achieve the desired effect of a highly productive, problem solving team that sets them apart from the rest of the organization. References Special Forces, (2005) Microsoft (R) Encarta (R) Online Encyclopedia The U.
S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, (2005) L’Allier, James J. Ph. D. & Kolosh, Kenneth (June, 2005) Cox, Taylor (1994) University of MichiganBruhn, John (1996) Pennsylvania State University.
... it does not favor the smaller developing countries needs primarily. If the World Trade Organization eliminates tariffs and quotas, it could ... these situations from occurring. Members of the World Trade Organization should not have to fear the effects of trading with ... because of lack of resources, wealth, and labor that these experienced developed countries have. Also, free trade can force producers ...