Teamwork is often used in a common term for soft skill that must be possessed by one and all for the development of leadership and success (Riebe et al., 2016). I was first acquainted with the term in my early childhood where I participated in group activities and our success was determined by a collaborative effort of everyone. However, then, I had little knowledge of its significance and how it can help in shaping my approach towards complex problems and hurdles. Initially, I always perceived that teamwork is just a fancy term that people often use to make efforts of everyone count to be modest. I had developed this perception as I always felt that everyone cannot contribute equally to share credit with the effort of one person who seemed more to me than another on evaluation. Another component of teamwork that always conflicted with me was the fact that there is a higher chance of conflict as opinions of people towards what is ideal are always subjective. Recently, I participated in one of the team activities with my classmates where we had to work in a group of seven and complete the assigned task.
I was hesitant as I was clueless about what to expect and how things will go about. I was also afraid that I might end up souring my relationship with my batchmates due to conflicting opinions about how the task should be perceived and conducted and hence developed an exclusive approach. I thought it was better to not take lead and just have minimum participation. Unfortunately, I could not hold on to my plan and there were times where I had this urge to explain my perspective as according to me, it could help us achieve better results. To my surprise, my ideas were highly welcomed by my teammates that proposed a rationalized argument that helped us develop a smart strategy to complete the given task as a team. Even though, as a team we had submitted ourselves to the concept of “division of labor” where we democratically divided the subtasks among ourselves, I was a little skeptical how the things would turn out once they are compiled.
My reluctance to participate led to the development of a communication gap that caused delays at several times. However, this helped me understand the significance of strong communication and the development of interpersonal relationships with the members of the team for the successful completion of a task that is being undertaken. On the final day, when we were supposed to compile and evaluate the work that we had distributed among ourselves, it was astonishing how it had turned out to be way better than my expectations. I realized how teamwork can enhance efficiency and help in the achievement of greater results through a collaborative approach. The task that we competed was not only successful but also helped us achieve great appreciation from our peers as well as our accessors.
As I gathered more knowledge about teamwork, I learned that teamwork has been defined as a collaborative effort of a group that can help in the achievement of a common goal (Riebe et al., 2017). Teamwork is also crucial as it helps in the development of unity and collaboration among the peers and the participants. Since every individual possesses different talents and strengths, teamwork allows for accentuate these strengths. I realized the relevance of the same when we distributed the workload where different people in my team were allotted the tasks based on their primary strengths. This helped in the identification of the talents of everyone and allowed for the production of results with only the best. It has also been addressed that teamwork allows from the completion of tasks in time by the distribution of workload (Hobson et al., 2018). Since the responsibility of the duties is divided, there is no central responsibility, rather, everyone develops and ownership that assists in the development of ownership and improves the credibility of the task conducted (Tripathy, 2018).
I realized that when we designated different roles to each other, it helped in the development of a sense of responsibility and provided ownership towards the task. It also helped in decreasing the burden and helped in timely completion even with minor hurdles that were a part of the brainstorming process and lack of effective communication. Teamwork is also considered superior as it assists in providing different perspectives and feedback. Every individual perceives and thinks of a problem or task in their way. Teamwork, therefore, enhances the chances of identification of the superior ideas and their effective implementation as it involves more than one source of ideas (Riebe et al., 2016). Further, since multiple feedbacks are a part of teamwork, it helps in the overall improvement and aids in the identification of lacuna that might have been overlooked by an individual. This provides a holistic view of the task and helps in the achievement of the best possible. I realized this significant power of teamwork when I proposed my idea in one of the initial meetings about how the task should proceed.
It helped in the application of the suitable strategy that was readily accepted and modified as per the requirements after a constructive discussion. Collaborative efforts, participatory approach, and teamwork are also essential in the development of synergy among peers towards a targeted goal (Driskell, Salas & Driskell, 2018). Since there is a mutually shared goal, teamwork allows for cooperation and engagement among the participants and provides a greater sense of accomplishment for the collective outcome (Sanyal &Hisam, 2018). In the course of completion, since all my team members were aware of their roles and responsibilities, a smooth transition of work was possible. Working in teams is also associated with providing better learning opportunities. As different people are involved, the lacunas are more readily identifies. This allows for the development of skills and learning from each other. It also enhances the expansion of skill sets and prevents future errors making teamwork a dynamic and effective approach for task completion (McDaniel &Salas, 2018).
As I look back upon my involvement in the teamwork for task completion, I realize several things. I realized that I had a false perception of how teamwork can be chaotic with more than one mind involved. I came to this conclusion after I experienced that if things are appropriately managed and divided, teamwork helps in sharing the responsibility and enhances ownership. I also learned that teamwork helps in the identification of the individual strengths and helps in building on them to produce the most desirable results (Riebe et al., 2016). Upon introspection, I also concluded that thoughts must be essentially expressed in teamwork, this helps in the development of more concrete ideas that can be applied and used for the completion of tasks in the best possible way. However, I also realized that my reluctance in participation was also reflected in my behavior that caused hindrance in the development of strong communication within the peers and also led to occasional delays that were fortunately covered up by the time of final compilation.
I realized that effective communication in teamwork must be built by the development of strong interpersonal relationships among each other as it enhances the trust and builds a productive environment. Effective communication has also been associated with the development of stronger integrity in the team that can enhance the overall outcome. Communication also assists in the completion of tasks faster and with higher efficiency making it a fundamental necessity in the successful completion of the task by the teams (Driskell, Salas &Driskell, 2018). Strong communication skills among the team members allow the team members to understand their roles and responsibilities more clearly and diminish the ambiguities within the same (McDaniel &Salas, 2018).
After learning the same, I will assure that I participate in more team activities in the future and contribute with my very best for the completion of the tasks. I will also work on my communication skills and promote the free spirit of working in teamwork as it will not only enhance my productivity but also assist in the completion of the tasks with higher efficiency. In the near future, I will also develop and work on my skills that will help me emerge as a strong team player. Through this, I will ensure that I have maximum participation in the team activities and undertake initiatives to innovate and therefore also improve the overall quality. I think, if I would have completed this task all by myself, I would have faced greater problems and would not have been able to produce it to its highly prime quality worth of appreciation. Therefore, I think I can conclude that in this process I was not only able to learn the essential need of teamwork but also got an opportunity to reflect on my limitations and improve them for the future.
Driskell, J. E., Salas, E., & Driskell, T. (2018). Foundations of teamwork and collaboration. American Psychologist, 73(4), 334.
Hobson, C. J., Szoztek, J., Griffin, A., Lusk, D., &Rydecki, K. (2018). Identifying the specific behaviors that define teamwork–a review of the literature and integrative meta-model for business school applications. Journal for Excellence in Business & Education, 5(1), 28.
McDaniel, S. H., & Salas, E. (2018). The science of teamwork: Introduction to the special issue. American Psychologist, 73(4), 305.
Riebe, L., Girardi, A., &Whitsed, C. (2016). A systematic literature review of teamwork pedagogy in higher education. Small Group Research, 47(6), 619-664.
Riebe, L., Girardi, A., &Whitsed, C. (2017). Teaching teamwork in Australian university business disciplines: Evidence from a systematic literature review. Issues in Educational Research, 27(1), 134.
Sanyal, S., &Hisam, M. W. (2018). The impact of teamwork on work performance of employees: A study of faculty members in Dhofar University. IOSR Journal of Business and Management, 20(3), 15-22.
Tripathy, M. (2018). Building quality teamwork to achieve excellence in business organizations. International Research Journal of Management, IT and Social Sciences, 5(3), 1-7.
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