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An Observation of 'Team Dynamics'

Organisational Behaviour & Change - 'Subway'
by

jordan arendale

on 29 October 2012

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Transcript of An Observation of 'Team Dynamics'

An Observation of 'Team Dynamics' Introduction Rational: Background Information: Subway Team Roles Observation:
-Observation of 'Subway' fast food store, Chose Subway as it was...
-Easily accessible
-Majority of team behaviour is visible
-Did not require ethical permission to observe
-It's yummy! -Fast food franchise
-Est. 1965
-Over 30,000 outlets worldwide
- Observed Subway, Glenferrie Rd on 17th October, 1:30. A set of behaviours that certain people are expected to perform in their team (McShane, 2010)

-Various roles are assigned to specific people, based on needs/skills
EG/. A receptionist would be expected to have great communication skills, easily approachable etc Jordan Arendale 7534523
Elizabeth Storaci 9525181
Kristina Andrejic 5468507
Eziss Armanous 7395833 Analysis of 'Team Dynamics':
-Team characteristics, size, composition, diversity, development, roles etc Class engagement activity:
-'Fill in the blanks' questions Recommendations/Conclusion:
-What can be learnt from Subway as a team Although many of us have been to subway, observing them as a workforce for a lengthy period of time revealed some interesting dynamics and team processes. Teams are useful when the complex work can be divided into more specialised roles and people in the specialised roles require frequent coordination with each other. Team Characteristics The Subway team has people with specialised roles such as:

A manager (Leader)
Floor manager/ 2IC
Fillings
Bread
Register They showed sequential interdependence as they were organised in an assembly line and one team members’ output would become the direct input for another person. Team Characteristics cont. Showed task interdependence with consistent communication with each other and assisting with the processes of their specialised tasks. -The team size varied depending on how many customers were waiting to be served.
If there were more customers then more employees would come out and work.


Once the lunch rush was finished the manager went straight to the back to complete other tasks and instead of having 6 team members it was lowered down to about 4.



With less team members out the front the employees seemed more relaxed and worked much slower, during the lunch rush the team was very quick with their tasks and were not relaxed. Team Size For a team to work effectively employees must have more than just self- leader ship and technical skills in order to perform their work; they must also be prepared and capable to perform within a team environment.

The five C’s.
-Cooperating
-Coordinating
-Communicating
-Comforting
-Conflict resolving TEAM COMPOSITION A team member who lacks these team work characteristics and behaviours may weaken the dynamics of the entire team. - People from different backgrounds and different ages tend to see a problem or opportunity from a different perspective.

-All team members have different mental models as they are more able to identify possible solutions to complicated problems.

-Team members have a broader collection of practical competencies such as diverse skills, abilities and personality traits. Team Diversity At Subway the team consisted of:

- 2 males and 4 females
- They were all of different ages, from 17-30 years of age
- Different backgrounds to others workers.

Despite large differences, members were able to work efficiently as a team Team Diversity -Subway’s team development is already in the performing stage

-Team was highly task oriented TEAM PROCESSES AND DEVELOPMENT Is defined as:
The extent to which members are attracted to the team and motivated to remain in it.” -(Shaw, 1981) Team Cohesiveness Determinants of team cohesiveness:

1.Team interaction
“Through frequent interactions, members get to know one another and become more devoted to the team.” -(Arnold & Feldman, 1983)

2.Concept of shared goals
•If team members agree on goals, they will become more cohesive.

3.Personal attraction to the team
•Team members have similar attitudes, values and enjoy being together. Consequences of team cohesiveness 1. Morale
“High cohesiveness has almost uniformly good effects on the satisfaction and morale of team members.” -(Cartwright & Zander, 1968)

2. Productivity
Highly cohesive teams are more productive because when team members felt management support, and less productive when they sensed management hostility and emptiness. Constraints on team decision-making:

Time constraints
(Committees keep minutes and waste hours)

Evaluation apprehension
(Reluctant to mention ideas that seem silly, because they believe that other team members are silently evaluating them)

Pressure to conform
(Keeps a group organised around common goals)

Groupthink
(Tendency of highly cohesive groups to value consensus at the price of decision quality) Team Decision Making Constructive conflict

Brainstorming Structure to improve creativity and decision-making -Roles vary due to personality types
EG/. Extroverted or introverted, Belbin's team roles as below

-Informal roles are shared amongst members
EG/. Organic leaders can highlight beneficial values without being of managerial status. -Specified task oriented roles

-Dependant roles. Each member was heavily reliant on the person preceding them.

-Staggered and set process. Each person had their particular spot in the ‘sandwich production line’. Team Roles Cont. Team roles in Subway: EG/. Cashier remained in one spot; had no part in the process of preparing food (Positive personality, ability to communicate effectively with customers, ask for upgrades etc) Informal rules that are established to regulate group behaviour (McShane, 2010)

-Only apply to behaviours, not thoughts
-Formed through subtle events in the beginning stages of a group
-Once established, are difficult to change

It was difficult to observe any obvious team norms at subway. Team Norms
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