Monday, December 15, 2008

Differences Can Make For A Great Team

Differences Can Make a Strong Team
MaryEllen Gibson
University of Phoenix

Differences Can Make a Strong Team
Working as a team requires time, organization, and a willingness to exchange ideas. During the masters program at the University of Phoenix students are required to complete a team project in each class. In our first class we are getting our feet wet using the tools from the Learning Team Toolkit. This paper will review the team personality types, listening skills, trust levels, and our team charter for group A.
Team A represents four of the sixteen Jungian Personality types ENFP, ENTJ, INFJ, and ENTP. Three of the team members were “Extraversion (E)” and one was “Introversion (I)” this was a good combination of ideas and action to make the group successful in completing the team charter. All four members were “Intuition (N)” which made the team effective taking in the information required and synthesizing it into a working team document. Team A had equal members of “Feeling(F)” and “Thinking(T)” in addition to “Judging(J)” and “Perceiving(P)” this gave the team a balance between the personality types and made it both logical and emotional centered. The personality types worked well together completing the project.
Listening Skills ranged in the group from forty-five to fifty-nine, which made the group as a whole below well honed and above needing improvement. It is difficult to tell the listening skills of the group when working online. Since team members correspond through the written word. Listening was developed more through team building.
In an asynchronous virtual classroom, taking time to do team building before assigning students to major team-based projects can be time-consuming for teachers and students.
However, it is an important first step in translating critical pedagogy and collaborative writing to the virtual realm. (Garcia, Nagelhout ,& Staggers,2008)
We will be creating an open environment of correspondence within our team area for our assigned projects.
Trust Levels in our group ranged from two to four the range for the test was one to five so our team had members with high, middle, and low trust scores. This range of trust worked well for this assignment because those with low trust of other were proactive getting the group moving to complete the project. I believe the trust level will increase after additional projects are completed by the group.
The Team Charter was complied by each member adding her own ideas. Many of the ideas overlapped which gave direction to what ideas were considered most important. The assignment was a significant reflection of the way many businesses now operate having teams across the country or across the world. General Electric considers this to be paramount to the way business is now done.
"virtual collaborations" are at the heart of the way business is now being done. Sharing documents, running product tests over time zones, real-time discussions--all are essential to participating and thriving in the global market. A typical team today at GE could span two or three continents and must call upon all of the electronic resources available to it in order to share technical drawings, presentations, notes, and ideas, bridging distances and language barriers. (Kellson, 2008)
As an Internet Marketing Director I have worked with designers and programmers around the world. This makes it very important to have good project management when working across continents and time zones the Learning Team Toolkit and Forum will help us create this project management.
In Conclusion, the first team project had many teachable moments that have allowed us to learn the do’s and don’t of working with a team virtually. I believe that after this project and the knowledge obtained through the Jungian Personality Test, Listening Skills Test, Trust Test and finally the Team Charter that our group will be even more successful in the coming projects.


Garcia, S., Nagelhout, E., & Staggers, J. (2008). Teamwork through team building: face-to-face to online. Business Communication Quarterly, 472-487.

Kellson, K. (2008). Virtual teamwork. T H E Journal, 22-24.

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