“Organization is defined as social entities brought into existence and sustained in an ongoing way by humans to serve some purpose, from which it follows that human activities in the entity are normally structured and coordinated towards achieving some purpose or goals” (Rollinson, 2008:4). Organizations are driven by employees. Understanding the nature of employees is very important aspect. That will lead to success of organization. This assignments talk about the 2 organizational issues regarding Working in groups and teams and organizational culture. Teams are the core part of organization and it is successful if the team is effective and productive. There are many factors contributing to team effectiveness. This essay focuses on the belbin roles and mix roles of people in a team would yield the best performance and making team effective. It also talks about the factors contributing the team effectiveness. Literature review talks about the Belbin role theory which mainly talks about the nine roles in a team and the factors contributing the team effectiveness. Furthermore, it talks about the analyzing the team effectiveness in my previous organization and suggesting the factors to be considered while designing the team. The second topic of the assignment talks about the organization culture. It is directly related to the performance of the firm. Culture is a very broad topic. It created an identity to the employees of the firm. This essay focuses on the Denison and mishra culture traits, which talks about the four traits of the organization effectiveness. These traits talks about the growth and profitability of the firm. Literature review emphasizes on how the culture traits theory is related to organizational effectiveness. Moreover, talks about the significance of each trait and influences on the effectiveness. Furthermore, the later part of the essay talks about the analysis of the culture traits in my previous organization. It explains how the traits influenced the organization effectiveness and then suggestion about the factors to be considered to make organization effective. I have chosen these two topics since it was very closely related to my experience. I had worked in different kind of teams and personally observed the success of the team. Organisation culture is directly related to performance of the organisation.
I was working with Infosys technologies Limited, Multinational company in India providing software services and consultants. It was started in 1981 by Mr. N R Narayan murthy with seven others with US$250. Currently it is a global leader in software services and technology consulting of revenues over US$4 billion. It delivers technology based business solutions that help Global 2000 companies win in a Flat World. They also provide complete range of services by having an advantage on domain and business expertise with major technology providers. Some of the services offered by Infosys are business consulting, software development and maintenance, re engineering and Business process outsourcing . Infosys has a global footprint all over the world. It has head quarters in Bangalore, India. It has over 100,000 employees. Infosys takes pleasure in building long-term client relationships. Over 97% of Infosys revenues arrive from existing customers (Infosys, 2010). I had joined the company as a software engineer, entry level of the organisation.
Data and Methods
The data provided in this essay is purely based on my personal observation in previous organization worked and as well as data from company website. I have mentioned clearly where ever required.
Part 1 (Factors contributing to the team effectiveness)
I would review the journal article “How do top teams succeed? Factors that contribute to successful senior management team performance “by Malcolm Higgs (2006) and also a book “Management Teams: Why they succeed or fail” by Belbin R. (2003).
As per Mcshane and von gilnow (2005) defined the team as group of 2 or more people interacting and influencing among themselves and are responsible for the common goals and objectives and recognize themselves as a social identity within an organization. Team can be observed based on the effectiveness. Mcshane and von gilnow (2005:271) defined Team effectiveness as “The extent to which a team achieves its objectives, achieves the needs and objectives of its members, and sustains itself over time”. A Team to be effective it should accomplish a task with member's satisfaction. Rollinson (2008) stated that Team effectiveness is evaluated based on task criteria and member satisfaction criteria. Task criteria such as quality of work output, accuracy and speed in completing the work and economy in use if resources. Member satisfaction criteria consist of group cohesiveness, member satisfaction with in the group and wanting to be part of team and to retain (Rollinson, 2008). A role is set of behaviour that people are expected to achieve due to they hold certain positions in a team and organization (McShane and Von Gilnow, 2005). Every team will have several roles and every member in a team has a particular role. A role makes team to achieve its goals and also achieves satisfaction among members of team and fulfils their needs. Roles are given to appropriate people who are eligible for that. Interaction between the team members is necessary for the team to be effective. Measuring team effectiveness would be helpful in delivering improved performance and achieving organizational goals. Team outperforms than individuals. Group performance can be measured based on the outcomes. Hackman-Morris group interaction model represents the factors contributing the performance and the outcomes of the group as shown in 1.
Belbin team roles
An individual can be described in many ways such as knowledgeable, creative, hard working, and diplomatic, clever so on. It depends on individual characteristics. Belbin (2003) mentioned that people have been divided in to nine roles according to the individual characteristics. Plant, Monitor Evaluator, Specialist, Resource Investigator, co coordinator, team worker, shaper, implementer and complete finisher are the nine roles a team should have to be successful. Each type of role has strengths and weaknesses. As per Belbin (2003) Qualities of are Plant would be creative, imaginative, solves difficult problems; Coordinator would be Implementer disciplined reliable, conservative and efficient and also implements ideas in to the practical actions; Resource investigator would be A capacity for contacting people and exploring anything new; Team worker would be mild in character, cooperative and helps in increasing team spirit by highly and active interaction between other team members.
A balanced mix of roles and people makes team more efficient and successful (belbin 2003).Each team member must be aware of their personalities so that they can be fit in the appropriate team roles which suit them perfectly. It is difficult to find all the strengths in one person which team requires. It is not necessary that one person should have one role in team; a person can perform many roles depending on the situation.
A team can be successful with a co coordinator, with a good mental ability. He should be patient as well as commanding personality who will be trusted and know to use his ability in right direction (Belbin, 2003). In most cases he might not dominate but he might know when exactly get the things done in a right way and also he would know how to effectively utilize resources. However he is singularly adaptive and also never loses his grip in a situation.
Moreover there should be a strong plant in a team who is creative or clever (Belbin 2003). However creativity is more important than cleverness since it is an entity itself and distinct. But if a person is creative and clever then it is added advantage the team. Whereas a very creative plant but only an average cleverness was unlikely to perform well and might be unsuccessful in establish team role. A team should have a clever manager, clever plant who have mental ability slightly above the average and other team members slightly below the average (Belbin, 2003). A brilliant and highly creative plant is asset to a team by only if responsibility is with manager. As the other team members have a chance to be encouraged to prove their talent. Best match should exist between the attributes of members and their responsibilities in the team. Team roles should match the personality characteristics of the individual team members. In most of the cases it has been notices that the members are not assigned work that they deserve. This leads to team less successful and imbalance (belbin 2003). In such situations the imbalance team can be adjusted to make it successful. The team roles can be interchanged as well as same person performing more than one role.
Team is more difficult to study than an individual (belbin 2003).If no individual can combine all the qualities, a team of individuals certainly can and often does. So it is not the individual enduring success in the management. However it is the team driving the organization to success. Team produce a quality and quantity work far higher than the sum of individuals could be produced separately on their own. The effective team is destroyed if a highly skilled and had great depth of knowledge about the team and work is moved out. Replacement of him would take more time in bringing the team back to normal since it is more time consuming to train the new person about the team. Belbin roles are mostly about the behaviour with other team members in terms of group dynamics rather than functional role. Belbin team roles play an important part in team effectiveness. As per my observation in Infosys the below factors contribute to the team effectiveness as evidence by Belbin (2003).
Balanced Mix of roles in my team: Company has to select the members of a team based on their characteristics. I worked in a team consisting of 20 people having different mix of people. It had a coordinator who is very efficient, active and highly efficient, Team worker was very active and highly interactive, plant was solving the problems in tough situations, resource investigator was enthusiastic and exploring new things in the project and making aware of the team about the new ideas, completer finisher was perfectionist in completing the work never used to compromise and finally implementer was a practical person who was proactive in completing the work on time. I had a role of team worker. I was regularly interacting with the team members and was responding to any situation and trying to resolve the issues. Team had overcome all the tough situations since members in a team had bonding towards each other. All the members were dedicated and were motivated towards work. The team members were helpful with each other and were shared the work to be done.
Good Manger: Organization recruits the most brilliants people across the globe. The managers would be highly experienced of about 8 years. A manager of a team represents the team as a whole. He is responsible for the entire activities and outcomes of the team. I personally observed that my team had a very effective manager. He uses to get task done on time by motivating team members. Team had to work for almost 16 hours per day. Even though completing the work for the day, he used to stay with the team and was providing moral support. Team members were highly productive and were inspired by the manager. He was balancing the team by concentrating on task criteria as well as members satisfaction criteria. He was an ideal manager according to me. All the teams he worked were highly productive and successful teams.
A strong Plant: The team had three plants as a whole, where two of them were highly creative and clever. They used to solve any kind of problem successfully. They were having many new ideas about the work to be done and made the task familiar to everyone. However they were less interactive with team. The manager used to communicate with them and was getting task done and making aware of whole team. Belbin (2003) commented that the Plant is reserved in nature and hence would not gel with other members of the team. However this role is very important for the team. I had observed that this quality of plant did not hamper the team effectiveness. The whole team was aware of this quality and hence adjusted accordingly.
Fair spread in mental abilities: My team had a good manager (Coordinator) and clever plants that were above average in mental ability and other team members were team workers, resource investigator and completer finisher who were average. This balance team was successful. As per Belbin (2003) if all the team members are highly clever then there exists a conflict between them. This might lead to ego problems. No one agrees to others decision. Everyone will be of dominating character.
A good match between the attributes of members and their responsibilities in the team: The team members should have the team roles that match according to their personal characteristics. In most of the cases it is not possible. People should get adjusted and perform well in the team. Most of my team members were fitted in the roles that suited them. However some of the other team members were not satisfied with the work and the responsibilities given. They were initially de motivated to work. Later they were discussed the issue with the manager. Then the manager convinced them stating that the work needs to be done only by them to achieve the goal. They were convinced and later they were adjusted to the role. This clearly displays the qualities of a good manager. The best match between people and job came about through allowing informal arrangement to modify any mismatches that would otherwise have existed.
The communication between the team should be more effective. To complete a given task members has to interact with each other and share their knowledge. As per my observation my team was very efficient in communication. Whole team was aware of the progress of the project. All the members were communicated about the work and schedules of the work in detail. Regular meetings and interaction between the team members was the value added to the team.
So a particular organization should take some of the actions while designing the team to make team successful and effective. They are while recruiting the members they should primarily focus on the characteristics of the person. For instance while recruiting the manager, he should be assessed by giving particular situation to act and based on the evaluation of the character, management should make a decision to recruit. They also need to make the internal posting so that the team members who are not satisfied with the current team can be moved to the other team.
Part 2 (traits of Organization Culture and effectiveness)
I have reviewed the journal article “Toward a Theory of Organizational Culture and Effectiveness” by (Denison and Mishra, 1995) and another journal article “Organizational culture and firm effectiveness: An examination of relative effects of culture traits and the balanced culture hypothesis in an emerging economy” by (Ce Yilmaz and Ergun, 2008).
Organizational culture leads to the performance and effectiveness of the organization. Culture can be determined by understanding the people behaviour. Denison developed a cultural traits model which has 4 traits – Involvement, Adaptability, Mission and consistency and it can be used to study culture and effectiveness.
Denison and Mishra (1995) stated that the 4 traits are the indicators of growth and profitability. Involvement and adaptability are indicators of flexibility, openness and responsiveness and are predictors of growth of the company, while mission and consistency are indicators of integration, direction and vision. They are also strong predictors of profitability. All four traits are predictors of the effectiveness such as employee satisfaction, quality and overall performance. Denison and Mishra (1995) stated that all four traits are positively related to effectiveness of organization. First trait Involvement suggests that high involvement and participation which may generate sense of ownership and responsibilities and commitment to organization. Second trait Consistency, the root of this trait is normative integration and is more effective in internal coordination rather than external control system relying on explicit rules. These two traits mainly focus on the dynamics of internal integration. The third trait is adaptability; it is capacity for internal change in response to external conditions. An effective organization should enhance its norms and beliefs which helps its capacity to receive and interpret signals from its environment and convert these into internal cognitive, behavioural and structural changes (starbuck 1971;kanter 1983 cited in Denison and Mishra, 1995).Company needs to try to adapt the new changes according to the external environment. This might leads to the growth of the firm. The last trait is mission, which involves economic and non economic objectives which each and every employee is directed. It emphasizes on the stability central purpose of the firm. It concentrates on the core values and deemphasizes on the adaptability and change. These two traits concentrate on the dynamics of external adaptation. Authors have agreed that the mission provides two major influences on organizational functioning. Firstly mission provides the non economic reasons, meaning and importance of the organizational work. Secondly it defines the action for the organization members. These two factors are the key values to the organization. Authors have combines these four traits into a framework. By considering these traits individually leads to the contradictory to one another. All the four traits are interlinked to each other. Firms should have the balance focus on all traits. Authors mentioned that integrating and coordinating the internal resources and its adaption to external environment results in the most effective organization. If the focus is on one particular trait this may lead to the imbalance combination of traits which may affect to organization effectiveness.
“Organisational culture is a pattern of basic assumptions –invented, discovered, or developed by a given group as it learns to cope with its problems of external adaptation and internal integration – that has worked well enough to be considered valid and, therefore, to be taught to new members as the correct way to perceive, think, and feel in relation to those problems” (Schein cited in Rollinson, 2008:591).Culture is a key aspect in organisation to bottom line performance. Basic assumptions are invisible and informs about the basic behaviour of the members and the way to perceive. The some of the basic assumptions of Infosys are the individuals are given freedom to take decisions and reviewed by the top management. Infosys follows the strong hierarchy, each and everyone should follow. Any issues or concerns should be raised to the next level only. Values and beliefs are the next level in culture. It is the awareness to the employees in the organisation. It is the moral for behaviour to put the basic assumptions in practice. The core values of Infosys are Customer Delight, Leadership by Example, Integrity and Transparency, Fairness, Pursuit of Excellence (Infosys, 2010).Artifacts are the top most layer of the culture which is most visible manifestations. They provide the clues underlying values and beliefs (Rollinson, 2008).Employees are motivated and inspired by the founder of Infosys, Mr Narayana Murthy, Who was the successful business man. Under his leadership the company had become the second largest software services company in India. The company had listed in NASDAQ in 1999. In Infosys had become the successful company because of its adherence to values and employees are highly committed towards these values.
Culture traits in Infosys
Infosys focus on the four traits for organisation effectiveness. Regarding the adaptability, since it is the dynamic environment, it needs to update the technologies, structure to compete with the world. It is majorly customer focus firm. It believes in learning from mistakes which improves the learning of an individual or organisation as a whole. So by adapting to new changes might lead to the increase in learning. Regarding involvement, it had given complete freedom to employees. They were fully focused and involved in the work provided to them. They were highly committed towards work. Employees were rewarded based on their performance annually. They were highly motivated. Employees focus on the working together towards a common goal. Regarding the Mission, It majorly focuses on the core values as mentioned earlier. A common goals and objectives are set and may not change. Infosys has a set of policies that employees need to adhere. These are stable and never changed. It has been observed that the productivity of employees has been increased in Infosys compared to other firms. The only reason behind this is that it is strong and highly focused on Mission and Vision of the firm. However the focus on the mission leads to the lack of involvement of the employees since it is this had a great increase in the performance and growth of the organisation as evident by Ce Yilmaz and Ergun (2008).Lastly the last trait Consistency, It has been observed that focuses on the agreement and core values. “Overall magnitude and balanced combination dimensions of the overall culture profile influence firm performances independently from one another” (Ce Yilmaz and Ergun, 2008:294).An Organisation should have a balance focus on all the traits which would increase in growth of the organisation as well as profitability. Only focusing on a single trait will lead to imbalance culture as evident by Ce Yilmaz and Ergun (2008).For instance high involvement without the rest of the traits may lead to inadequate emphasis on the external processes.
Overall essay talks about the factors contributing the team performance and effectiveness. Belbin (2003) mentioned that mix balance of roles makes team successful and effective. This is evident in case of my last organization. I personally observed the factors contributing to the effectiveness. Higgs (2006) stated that to increase team effectiveness, it should have the mix of characteristics of people and balanced team makes team successful. Belbin added to these the team should have a good coordinator, strong plant and a fair spread of mental abilities. This was evidence by the experiences in Infosys. The teams were designed and worked as suggested by the belbin. The communication and cohesiveness are also the key factors. There are limitations as well in this study. It was only based on the personal observation. This was not evidenced by the actual data due to the confidentiality. This was also referred to only one team in Infosys. From the analysis I have learned that how to make team effective in an organization. This has added advantage to my knowledge. The second part of essay was about the organization culture. The culture is directly proportional to performance of the employees. As per Denison and Mishra (1995) states culture traits of organization is directly related to effectiveness. The four traits – Adaptability, Involvement, Mission and Consistency are the indicators of employee satisfaction, market share, sales growth, quality and overall performance. Two of the traits adaptability and involvement are strong predictors of firm growth. The other two Mission and consistency are the strong predictors of profitability of firm. Firm should focus on the four traits equally to be most effective. Also highly focusing on one trait with the balance of remaining three would also be effective. Infosys was focusing on all the traits. Their main focus was on mission with equal focus on the other three. This was based on only my personal observation and restricted to only one company. No actual data can be provided due to the confidentiality.
Belbin R.2003. Management Teams: Why they succeed or fail.2nd edition, Butterworth-Heinemann.
Ce Yilmaz, C., & Ergun, E. (2008). Organizational culture and firm effectiveness: An examination of relative effects of culture traits and the balanced culture hypothesis in an emerging economy. Journal of World Business, 43(3), 290-306
Denison, D., & Mishra, A. (1995). Toward a Theory of Organizational Culture and Effectiveness. Organization Science, 6(2), 204-223
Higgs, M. (2006). How do top teams succeed? Factors that contribute to successful senior management team performance. Journal of General Management, 32(2), 77-99
Infosys 2010: Who We Are Available at: http://www.infosys.com/about/who-we-are/Pages/index.aspx : accessed 27 December 2009.
Infosys 2010: What We Do Available at: http://www.infosys.com/about/what-we-do/pages/index.aspx : accessed 28 December 2009.
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