Addressing Challenges of Groups and Teams Essay
The use of teams in the workplace is continuing to grow because teams work more efficiently and are effective (Robbins & Judge, 2011). However with teams challenges and benefits present with group and team communication, collaboration, and conflict can arise. The Enron Corporation failed to have an effective plan to promote communication, collaboration, and address conflict. The following will review a plan that outlines the benefits and challenges of groups and team through the promotion of communication, collaboration, and address conflict.
Creating an Effective Team Three elements of an effective team are categorized as contextual, composition, and process (Robbins & Judge, 2011). The effectiveness of the team is dependent on the three elements collectively working together to form the team effectiveness. Contextual Factors The contextual factors determine the success of the team. The factors considered contextual are adequate resources, leadership and structure, climate of trust, and performance evaluation and reward system (Robbins & Judge, 2011). The adequate resources for a team begin with proper training about team development and how to work within a team.
The team is supported by the organization and has the proper assistance to complete the tasks. The training plan for Enron begins with support from the organization. The team is supported by the executive leadership throughout the corporation. The failure of Enron resulted from the lack of executive leadership to support the ethical business practices within the organization. Therefore, an effective training plan with the support of the executive leadership is the key to success of ethical business practices throughout the organization. Leadership within a team is the key to the success of the team.
Enron Corporation executive leadership failed to act as a leader and set the organizational objective for conducting business. The leader within the team helps the team define the shared objectives, member skills, and role clarity for the team members (Yukl, 2010). The leader of the team helps to establish the climate of trust among the members of the team. The climate of trust was not established throughout the Enron Corporation because the executive leadership knowingly engaged in accounting fraud and formation of illegal partnerships.
The training plan allows each aspect of the contextual element to support the training plan for ethics throughout the organization. Composition Factors The composition factors of the effective team are composed of the abilities of the team members, personality of the members, and allocation of members. The team members have different skills and abilities identified and properly used to allow the member the reach the fullest potential as a member of the team. Identifying skills and abilities allows the proper allocation of roles (Robbins & Judge, 2011).
Personality of members may have an effect on the team ability to complete tasks. Members of the team must be aware of their own personality to begin understanding how personality of others offers contributions to the team. Measuring emotional intelligence can help with self-reflection. “Emotional intelligence reflects the ability to read and understand others in social contexts, to detect nuances of emotional reactions, and to utilize such knowledge to influence others through emotional regulation and control” (Prati, Douglas, Ferris, Ammeter, & Buckley, 2003, p. 21).
Therefore, leaders with high emotional intelligence assures self-reflection and reflection of others to determine the most appropriate way to interact with others. Team Processes The final element of effective teams is team processes. The team processes define the purpose and plan of the team. The processes set the goal for the team. Team efficacy occurs with continued success of the team. Team processes also provide plans for handling conflict as it occurs within the team. Applying the Training Program for Enron Enron’s collapse resulted from unethical business practices.
The executive leadership within the corporation participated in the accounting fraud and hiding financial losses of the corporation. Enron’s code of ethics for the company should have served as a guide for employees ethically to conduct business practices. However, a waiver is included in the code of ethics that allowed the organization to engage in activities seen as a conflict of interest at the discretion of the chief executive officer (Elson & Gyves, 2003). The executive leadership failed to implement organizational behavior to instill ethical business practices throughout the company (Robbins & Judge, 2011).
The initial step to applying the training plan is communication. Communication among the members of a team and a corporation serve as the first step toward success. Communication among the members of the team can occur through electronic mail, memos, and face-to-face meetings (Robbins & Judge, 2011). The leader of the team is responsible for communication between the team and the executive leadership. Communication serves to engage members of the organization, implement change, and establish a checks and balances systems. The Enron Corporation failed to communicate effectively throughout the organization.
This lack of communication gave opportunity for the executive leadership to conduct unethical business practices. Collaboration among the members of an organization and team build the cohesiveness of the team and stimulate creativity to solve problems. Using collaboration to build the cohesion of the team keeps each team committed to the goals and mission of the organization. Collaboration will also help to maintain ethical business practices by assuring members of the organization responsible for the accounting and business practices are using checks and balances to report information accurately.
Conflict is expected to arise in team and group work. Therefore, the leader must be dedicated to addressing conflict and guiding the team through the conflict. Failure to address conflict can lead to failure of the team (Robbins & Judge, 2011). The leader of the team will use the conflict process to work through conflict. The training plan for Enron that included managing conflict can help to address unethical business practices prior to occurrence. Through the use of internal and external audits deficiencies and conflicts can be identified and addressed before unethical business practices are implemented.
Conclusion Communication, collaboration, and conflict management are keys to the success of teams and businesses. Enron failed to communicate, collaborate, and management conflict leading to the failure of a corporation. Enron allowed executive leaders to stifle communication, collaboration, and conflict management to hide fraudulent accounting practices. The implementation of a training plan supportive of communication, collaboration, and conflict management may have identified and addressed issues leading to the success rather than the failure of Enron Corporation.
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