(Mohrman et al. 1995) week 9 blackboard slides defines a team as a group of individuals who work together to construct products or deliver services for which they are mutually accountable. Based on this suggestion that a team consists of individuals, it is necessary to consider both the impact of psychological factors influencing individuals behaviour within the workplace and the relevance of effective management in creating a high performance working team. This essay will therefore look to evaluate the specific psychological factor of motivation and thereafter consider the implications on effective management in creating high performing teams which are considered crucial to modern day businesses operating in an increasingly competitive and global market place.
According to Mitchell (1982 as cited in Mullins) motivation is defined as the degree to which an individual wants and chooses to engage in certain specified behaviours. Mullins (2010) considers this a force that drives behaviour based on an individuals need or expectation to achieve a desired goal and gain fulfilment.
Mullins (2010) suggests that motivation has two distinctive elements based around twelve human needs which can be categorised into physiological (extrinsic) and social (intrinsic) motives.
Intrinsic motivators are said to produce a higher level of employee engagement and in turn performance according to Adonis (2006) who states that both motivated and engaged employees are vital to business success. Pink (youtube slides video) supports the view that Intrinsic motivators are a social exchange and suggests there are three elements to this; autonomy, mastery and purpose. This view bears similarities to Hackman and Oldhams job Characteristics model (reference blackboard motivation slides) however they include feedback as being an additional factor in delivering a high-performance outcome. Pink suggests that managers should aim to create a social exchange with employees however by doing so should consider that employee expectations will be created and there is a requirement for a leaders investment and long-term commitment to meet these social expectations. The social expectations bear resemblance to the concept of the intangible psychological contract, considered more influential than a legal contract (CIPD 2018 psychological contract). They suggest that the quality of such a contract will influence employees behaviour through higher levels of commitment, extra role behaviours and increased commitment. According to the CIPD (2018) the contract is based on an employees sense of fairness and trust and any breach of this contract by the employer could have negative effects on job satisfaction, commitment, performance and turnover intentions. This sense of fairness corresponds with Adams (1965 as cited in Mullins 2010) equity theory of motivation which considers how fairly individuals feel they have been treated compared to others. It could be said there is a need to also take account of the link to perception as this will have implications on the social exchange, psychological contract and sense of fairness. Mullins (2010) states that perception is the root of all organisational behaviour and suggests that perception impacts on an individuals behavioural response to both internal and external situations.
Pink (youtube slides) defines extrinsic motivators as a market exchange, one where an employee receives a reward for the work undertaken. Taylor (1909 cited in mindtools 2018) introduced the idea that workers are motivated by money with Pink (you tube video) suggesting that businesses have continued to be built around satisfying such extrinsic motivators however, he proposes this is no longer relevant to twenty first century businesses. According to Kohn (1995 as cited in BT article) money does not motivate at all, a view supported by Staff (2009) who highlighted that experiments conducted by Sam Gluxberg evidenced that monetary rewards produced lower results. Similarly, Professor Sam Bowles conducted research which found that financial incentives not only reduce intrinsic motivation but diminish compliance of social norms, such as fairness, within the workplace. Similarly, Bowles determined that the provision of incentives could in fact result in an overall negative impact on performance (The London School of Economics and Political Science, 2016). Such evidence indicates some limitations of Vrooms (1964) expectancy theory of motivation which suggests that employees motivation is the outcome of the individuals desire for a reward and suggests that it is the reward or incentive itself that will increase effort yet it is suggested that reward and performance are not directly correlated according to (reference blackboard slides). Hackman and Oldham (date as cited in Mullins, 2010) suggest extrinsic rewards are moderators rather the motivators, a view supported by Herzberg (date as cited in Mullins, 2010) who reflects extrinsic rewards within hygiene factors suggesting they too, are moderators. 748 words to here excl title
Salas et. al., (2000 teamowrk emerging principles desktop) highlight the importance of transforming individuals into a team and suggest it does not happen by chance but requires effort. Katzenbach and Smith (1993 as cited in Salas et al 2002) define a team as individuals where complimentary skill, shared leadership, team wide accountability, purpose and commitment exists. They suggest that such teams allow for businesses to deal with challenges faced in a complex global market and suggest that individuals are outperformed by teams (Katzenbach and Smith, 1999 cited in BT article). This is a view supported by Salas et al (1992 as cited in Solansky 2010) who state that when individuals work together as a collective their efforts are better than if they worked as an individual. However, Belbin (1997 cited in Mullins 2010) argues that teamwork itself does not guarantee good results but rather how the team interact yet Kautt (FB article georgia) argues it is only when each person within the team is working to their highest potential that outstanding results can be achieved. Taking account of these varying views of teams, consideration should be given to how a leader can effectively manage individuals psychological behaviours to ensure a team interacts in a way to produce the desired outcome of achieving high performance.
A high performing team is likely to be defined differently according to the teams setting and depending on the economic and legal implications relevant to the sector, industry or even department in question, a view supported by Scase (2003 cited in BT article) who states that high performing teams outperform others within the business. A high performing team within the Alan Boswell Group is one that produces results in line with set targets, maintains high levels of customer satisfaction, few complaints and whose members work in harmony together to achieve these outcomes. Hackman (2002) suggests an effective team will serve their customers well and meet or exceed quantity, quality and timeliness standards whilst recognising that the individuals within the team will become increasingly capable over time. It could therefore be argued that a high performing team is not a static status but temporary and ever changing suggesting managers need to remain flexible, adaptive and equipped to effectively manage change. Frieson (j2) states that an extensive research project identified three common charecteristics of high performance teams; a sense of fairness, a sense of achievement and sense of camaraderie. Taking account of all views, the implications for a manager are extensive. Not only should consideration be given to the individuals phycological factors affecting workplace behaviour but also consider the teams motivational forces and surrounding economical and legal impacts for example regulation, change, internal budgeting restraints and employee wellbeing amongst others.
Delizonna (2017) highlights the importance of trust within teams, noting that research indicated highest-performing teams commonly share psychological safety defined as; the ability to take risks, the freedom to be creative and the opportunity to express feelings openly without fear of negative repercussions. This suggest leaders should endeavour to create an environment conducive to this. Additionally, Heavey et al (2011) JJ suggests results from their empirical study evidence the positive impact that trust has on influencing commitment and therefore performance in the workplace.
Nelson (2010) Creating high performing teams J1) suggests a leaders goal should be to create cohesive and interactive teams whose mission is to achieve a common goal through collaboration. Lockes (1960 cited on blackboard slides) goal setting theory may provide a useful tool for leaders to consider group-centric individual goals that align to group goals. Nelson (2010) states that research indicates that such a combination results in team performance being 36 percent higher than it would be if goals were not considered in this way.
It could be said that Leadership style has relevance to high performing teams and that considered supportive of such teams may be a transformational leadership approach (Bass 1985 cited in Mullins 2010). A transformational leader is considered one that transforms and motivates followers through influence, inspiration, stimulation and concern for the individual. Leaders should also consider increasing self-awareness, achievable through consideration of the Johari window theory (Luft and Ingham, 1970 cited in Mullins 2010) in relation to the blind and hidden areas and practicing regular self-evaluation (Wilson, commentary on Mcgregor no date) whilst continually remaining mindful of the effects of unconscious bias (mindtools, 2018).
Equally useful is Druckers (1954 cited in Mullins 2010) management by objectives which links with Lockes (1960 cited in Mullins 2010) goal setting theory and should be considered for use alongside the equity theory (Adams 1965 cited in Mullins, 2010). It could be said that this combination of objective and goal setting and providing teams with a sense of fairness will increase the chances of achieving potential and thus creating high performance team wide.
In conclusion, it could be said that creation and sustainability of high performing teams relies to an extent on the leaders performance. It could be said that the leader should regularly evaluate their levels of motivation and be adaptable to adjusting their own performance in accordance with team changes. Equally leaders should ensure their leadership style reflects the organisational culture and they should constantly be aware of self, others and the external environment. To retain high levels of performance in teams, leadership is vital and engagement with individuals should be a regular occurrence placing value on communication within teams while considering that not everyone will perform exceptionally each day nor develop at the same pace.