When is a team not a team? When it’s really a group! Real teams have a clearly defined mission for which they hold themselves mutually accountable and produce a collective work product. Just because people are gathered to do something does not automatically make them a team. It takes intentional effort to move from being a group to a team.
A few distinctions between a team and a group include:
- Team members exchange individual accountability for mutual group accountability and shared group responsibility
- Teams identify and reach consensus on their common goal and approach while a group looks to the leader to define the goal and approach
- Teams are small enough that they can connect and communicate easily and frequently
It’s helpful to recognize that there is a difference between a real team and a group. Sometimes a group is good enough. Next week we will cover some of the approaches to building teams.