Teamwork is deployed in various areas and industries as a means of increasing efficiency, company’s culture, team unity and employees creativity. In fact, it is usually difficult to avoid teamwork throughout one’s career as well as in other spheres of life which are not connected to work. Communication is the key to sharing information and generating new ideas. Thus, teamwork is an essential part of developing new products, dividing the responsibility in an efficient way, and increasing mutual support among the team members. Sometimes, it can be argued that teamwork is less beneficial than individual performance and people tend to avoid it at all costs. Indeed, in some cases, working separately may lead to a better outcome than collaborating with others. Nevertheless, the significance of teamwork and teambuilding for an organization is considerable and should not be underestimated, thus its advantages and downsides are carefully analyzed.
Teamwork is a kind of performance that people sometimes tend to avoid. It may be caused by the possible negative consequences such as conflicts, disagreements, misunderstandings, and expression of hostility among co-workers .Moreover, some people find individual work easier as in this case they are not obliged to rely on others and can fully control their actions. Some employees may consider constant engagement in teamwork exhausting. As any other concept, teamwork has both advantages and disadvantages. However, the number of benefits surpasses the downsides. Teamwork is a means of self-development, making the work easier and, consequently, more enjoyable.
Primarily, one of the main advantages of teamwork is the increased productivity. Collaboration aims at performing towards a common objective. It is evident that it is impossible to avoid problems which occur during the working process. However, it takes less time and effort to resolve an issue with the help of other specialists. Moreover, the greater is number of the team members, the faster the work is completed due to the shared responsibilities. The company will definitely benefit from teamwork. In case the work is performed faster and there are more team members available, there is an opportunity to increase the number of operations undertaken by a department and boost the profit.
In order to be successful and competitive, a company should devise new ways of development and generate original ideas. Teamwork is one of the means of framing business concepts, which would later result in innovative products and services. In such an environment, people are open to presenting revolutionary ideas. On the contrary, individual workers tend not to risk and suggest a safer option. Ultimately, teams usually consist of employees with different skills, points of view, experience as well as various backgrounds. These factors are helpful in perceiving a task or an issue from different perspectives. Teamwork always implies discussion of the working process as well as sharing insights (Fay, Shipton, West, & Patterson, 2015). Thus, discussions within a team may be inspirational and beneficial for the team members and the company itself. While working individually, an employee can base a project only on his or her own reasoning. Simultaneously, team members may provide one another with valuable pieces of advice, creative atmosphere, and a big range of suggestions.
Following the previous claim, teamwork is a form of performance that gives people an opportunity to communicate with other specialists, though it does not necessarily imply different areas of expertise. Importantly, it brings together workers with unique experience and skills. Moreover, it increases the learning process and professional advancement. An employee can learn from others intentionally during discussions or meetings. However, teamwork also involves unintentional learning through remembering something unconsciously or without realizing it, while embracing new ideas from others (Sandoff & Nilsson, 2016). It is impossible to know everything in the professional field a person has chosen. Consequently, working with other people may be not only interesting, but also helpful in acquiring new knowledge. Professional growth often bases on one’s knowledge as well as on personal experience; therefore, while completing a task individually, a worker usually plays the role of the only knowledge source. Oppositely, in case with several sources, any person who is eager to find out more information will easily obtain a constructive piece of advice essential for further cooperation. In addition, more knowledgeable employees express an increased level of confidence. Consequently, if a person feels confident in the professional sphere, he or she maintains a more positive attitude both to the work itself and to co-workers. Moreover, this increases job satisfaction, which, in turn, leads to sustainable personal development and full achievement of the desired outcome.
Communication skills are one of the most important requirements to the applicants during employment. The majority of professions impose collective problem-solving and collaborative work during project design and other activities. Some people try to avoid team projects and work alone due to their character features and working preferences. However, nowadays, it is almost impossible to exclude teamwork from either the learning process or career building. In case a person does not have good communication skills, teamwork can be a great opportunity to master these techniques, both written and verbal, and boost the overall productivity. These skills are beneficial to collaboration, discussion, sharing information, and other activities, which are typical of the teamwork. Participating in communication as a part of a team regularly helps a person to develop various desirable traits as well as contribute to other people’s development. Discussions and meetings allow each member of the group to voice their opinion and be aware of the task’s progress. Thus, if every person participating in the project is informed about the advancement stage of work, there will be fewer chances for misunderstanding among the co-workers.
The individual contribution to the overall success is essential for any worker’s career and self-development. Despite this fact, sometimes it is difficult to complete all the work alone. Teamwork implies division of the workload within a group. Ideally, the work is distributed equally and in accordance with the personal skills and strong sides. If a member finishes the assigned part earlier, he or she receives an opportunity to help the colleagues in finishing their tasks. It is essential to understand that teamwork entails working toward a common objective. From the ethical point of view, it is always important to offer help to the counterparts, especially considering that it will be beneficial to the ultimate team’s results. Furthermore, a manager has to keep in mind the importance of giving the assignments to the right specialists in order to increase the productivity and the quality of work. Additionally, sharing responsibility may be beneficial in case the project fails. Thus, each team member has their own share of responsibility for achieving the established goal. It is easier to cope with an unsuccessful outcome for a group and reduce the negative effects than for one individual alone.
Job satisfaction is one of the main work objectives and the basis for successful performance. One of the advantages of working in a team is the support and the sense of belonging. Collaborative atmosphere has a positive effect on the mutual support within a team, which is important for the productive working environment and creates a strong workforce (Gallie, Zhou, Felstead, & Green, 2012). Teamwork is the way of building trustful relations within a group, helping each other, and relying on the others in completing the task. The working process is not devoid of challenging situations. Consequently, support and reliability of the team members is essential to finishing the work successfully. In general, if a person has confidence in his or her co-workers it eliminates the possible distraction from work by the emerging problems (Gallie et al., 2012). On the contrary, if an employee has to cope with all the issues occurring while completing the project, such an approach will lead to the low quality of work and unwise decisions as well as a decrease in the level of job satisfaction.
After completing a task together, co-workers know one another’s weak and strong sides and interests. This information is helpful in giving correct tasks to a particular person. Moreover, understanding of these points will help each team member to rely on the others and, consequently, build a strong and skillful team. Furthermore, one of the results of teamwork is enhancing motivation of its members. After finishing a project successfully, a team is motivated to work together again and demonstrate better results. In such an environment, motivation is boosted by experiencing how interesting it can be to work in a team and how encouraging the results are with the help of other people. The bigger the team, the higher is the competition among its members. Contributing to the overall success is equally essential to satisfying individual ambitions. The best way to show the competence is to keep on the same level with the other team members or exceed them (Raes, Boon, Kyndt, & Dochy, 2015). The desire to demonstrate outstanding results causes competition which is one of the means of increasing productivity.
Despite the numerous advantages of this type of collective work, it has also a set of disadvantages. Primarily, a great number of ideas are the source of innovation and creativity. However, people tend to have different views on the ways of completing the task, and might have contrasting attitudes toward the working process. For instance, some people postpone completing work till the last minute and put themselves in an extreme situation, while others prefer to finish their part in advance (Collins, Chou, Warner, & Rowley, 2015). This difference in working styles and preferences may lead to misunderstandings and difficulties in cooperation. Moreover, the clash of ideas is another obstacle on the way to successful performance. These differences in ideas concerning not only the sphere of work but also personal beliefs may cause conflicts which are usually difficult to resolve.
Leadership skills are usually developed while participating in teamwork. According to Barry and Wilkinson (2016), it, however, it does not necessarily have a positive influence on the overall productivity. It is natural that a desire for leadership is not equally typical of each individual. Sometimes, one employee discovers a strong desire to outshine other contributors. Ideally, each team member should possess a team spirit as well as the desire to complete the task (Fidalgo-Blanco, Sein-Echaluce, Garc?a-Pe?alvo, & Conde, 2015). It is evident that, occasionally, one participant may be more eager to complete the work or show better results merely to enjoy supremacy over others. The group’s productivity decreases as one of the members starts to focus only on individual needs and achievements. Moreover, such people fail to establish clear communication with other group members as well as share the ideas and distribute the tasks equally.
Teamwork, as any other approach to organizing the working process, includes both advantages and disadvantages that have to be assessed individually. On the one hand, there is a great probability of misunderstanding among the team members. It may be caused by diverse factors including the differences in working approaches and character features, the level of involvement and willingness to work, the ability to find compromises, and other aspects (Salas, Shuffler, Thayer, Bedwell, & Lazzara, 2015). On the other hand, teamwork increases motivation and trust among the employees, creates an innovative and creative atmosphere, enhances the learning process and personal development making the working process more interesting. Despite all the downsides of teamwork, its main advantage is the increased productivity, which is definitely beneficial for the organization’s success (Gallie et al., 2012). Furthermore, communicating within a group and brainstorming are the keys to the effective and competitive working environment, which results in designing new products and services. Consequently, teamwork is necessary for any company in terms of business profitability and development.
Another aspect of teamwork which can cause stress and disagreements is the difference in the level of participation and involvement of the members. The energy and desire for cooperation vary from one individual to another (Salm, Hoegl, & Muethel, 2015). However, willingness to work and an effort a person puts into the working process can make it difficult and challenging. There are two contrasting attitudes displayed by the people working in a team putting a lot of effort into completing the project in time, and finishing the work reluctantly without paying much attention to the deadlines. It usually depends mostly on the character features and the desire for personal and professional development. Reluctance and laziness demonstrated by some members negatively influences the group’s performance and the working environment. In addition, other team members usually have to take extra work (Jyoti & Jyoti, 2015). In case a company implements the practice when each team member receives the same reward irrespectively of the amount of work they have done, it unavoidably becomes one of the greatest disadvantages of teamwork. Simultaneously, sometimes, team members might face misunderstanding while dealing with an authoritative leader or co-worker. This behavior is typical of an employee who tends to take too much responsibility and is not eager to take into consideration other people’s ideas. Moreover, it is often demotivating to observe a leader getting all the praise for the task completion.
In conclusion, teamwork is one of organizational approaches to structuring the working process which is suitable for any kind of business. It provides an opportunity for development, helps the employees to build a strong team, and enhances communication skills. All the advantages of teamwork lead to the overall increase in productivity. As any other approach, it has its own disadvantages. However, they are insignificant if the workload is divided correctly among team members.
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