Research

Team Effectiveness – Formula

Team Effectiveness

In our article titled A Multiteam System (MTS) Effectiveness Model, we highlighted the components that make up team effectiveness for an individual team followed by synthesizing the characteristics that make up team effectiveness for multiteam systems. We also presented our team effectiveness formulas for an individual team and for a multiteam system. This post will discuss team effectiveness as it applies to an individual team.

First, it needs to be mentioned that team effectiveness DOES NOT equate to team performance. These are two separate concepts that are often confused as being synonymous. They are different.

The basic components of team effectiveness consist of four essential items: teamwork, taskwork, performance, and customer value. The figure below showcases these basic components.

(Turner et al., 2020, p. 8, Figure 1)

Teamwork relates to the interactions between team members consisting of three states: effective/attitudes, behavioral/motivational, and cognitions (Dihn & Salas, 2017; Kozlowski & Ilgen, 2006; Mathieu, Marks, & Zaccaro, 2001). Teamwork involves the “shared behaviors, attitudes, and cognitions” (Dihn & Salas, 2017, p. 16) associated with completing a team’s goal or task(s). While teamwork identifies the interpersonal characteristics of team members during their interactions, taskwork focuses on the knowledge, skills, and abilities required for teams to complete their tasks.

Team performance is closely related to a team’s output and is often measured by using some measure of quantity, quality, time, or some combination of these measures. The last component of team effectiveness relates to the customer. Was value delivered to the customer? Was the final product/service what the customer expected?

The customer should be clearly defined as “anyone outside of the team that has a value stake in the team’s functioning (Mathieu, Gallagher, Domingo, & Klock, 2019, p. 20).

In addition to the customer receiving the product or service, customer value also relates to individual team member experiences. Team members are an internal customer of the process/organization.

In its most basic form, team effectiveness can be represented by the following formula:

TE = TW + TK + PF + CV

TE – team effectiveness

TW – teamwork

TK – taskwork

PF – performance

CV – customer value

Accounting for a team’s temporal functions, Marks, Mathieu, and Zaccaro (2001) presented a temporal taxonomy of team processes. In general, teams have different functional processes during different stages of the team’s task:

Teams use different processes simultaneously and over performance episodes in order to multitask effectively. Some processes transpire more frequently in action phases and others in transition periods (Marks et al., 2001, p. 362).

This taxonomy identifies three temporal processes: transition phase processes (TP), action phase processes (AP), and interpersonal phase processes (IP). Transition phase processes relate toward the beginning phases when a team is forming, becoming organized, and getting started. Activities during the transition phase processes include mission analysis, formulation and planning, goal specification, and strategy formation (Marks et al., 2001). Action phase processes are those taken once the team is organized and completing the team’s tasks. Activities during this phase include monitoring and feedback activities as well as team members supporting other team members and coordination of activities. Interpersonal processes occur throughout the team’s tenure and involve activities such as conflict and effect management, and motivational techniques (Marks et al., 2001).

When you account for the temporal processes identified in Marks et al.’s (2001) taxonomy, the basic team effectiveness formula expands into the following comprehensive team effectiveness formula:

TE = (TW + IP) + TK (TP + AP) + PF + CV

Team effectiveness is a product of teamwork (teamwork, TW; interpersonal processes, IP), taskwork (transition phase processes, TP; action phase processes, AP), performance (PF) and customer value (CV).

Teamwork
(TW + IP)
Taskwork
TK(TP + AP)
Performan ce
PF
Customer
Value
CV
Team compositionOrientationQualityFeedback
CooperationResource
coordination
QuantitySatisfaction
Goal commitmentTimingTimeExceeds
expectations
Checking-InResponse
coordination
Task
completion
Satisfaction of
team members
Psychological safetyMotivation
TrustSystems
monitoring
CohesionProcedures
maintenance
ConflictTransition
Phase
Processes
Cognition conflictMission analysis
Process conflictGoal specification
Status conflictStrategy
formulation
and planning
Task conflictDeliberate
planning
CoordinationContingent planning
ExplicitReactive strategy
adjustment
ImplicitAction Phase
Processes
CommunicationMonitoring
progress
toward goals
CoachingSystems monitoring
CognitionInternal systems monitoring
Shared cognitionEnvironmental monitoring
Transactive memory
system
Team monitoring and backup responses
Shared mental memoryCoordination activities
Task-related
features
Team-realted
features
Culture
Context
Leadership structure
Interpersonal
Phase Processes
Conflict Management
Preemptive conflict
management
Reactive conflict
management
Motivating/confidence
building
Affect management
(Turner et al., 2020, p. 9, Table 1)

Sources: (Behfar et al., 2010; Devine, 2002; Dihn & Salas, 2017; Edmondson, 1999, 2019; Forsyth, 2014; Greer & Dannals, 2017; Hackman, 2011; Jehn & Chatman, 2000; Lewis, 2003; Lim & Klein, 2006; Marks et al., 2001; Mathieu et al., 2005, 2008, 2019; Mayer et al., 1995; Rico et al., 2008; Turner, 2016; Weaver et al., 2013; Yasmi et al., 2006)

References:

Behfar, K. J., Mannix, E. A., Peterson, R. S., & Trochim, W. M. (2010). Conflict in small groups: The meaning and consequences of process conflict. Small Group Research, 42, 127-176. doi:10.1177/1046496410389194

Devine, D. J. (2002). A review and integration of classification systems relevant to teams in organizations. Group Dynamics: Theory, research, and practice, 6(4), 291-310. doi:10.1037//1089-2699.6.4.291

Dihn, J. V., Salas, E. (2017). Factors that influence teamwork. In E. Salsa, R. Rico, & J. Passmore (Eds.), The Wiley Blackwell handbook of the psychology of team working and collaborative processes, 15-41. Malsen, MA: Wiley.

Edmondson, A. (1999). Psychological safety and learning behavior in work teams. Administrative Science Quarterly, 44, 350-383. doi:10.2307/2666999

Edmondson, A. C. (2019). the fearless organization: Creating psychological safety in the workplace for learning, innovation, and growth. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.

Forsyth, D. R. (2014). Group dynamics (6th ed.). Belmont, CA: Cengage Learning.

Greer, L. L., & Dannals, J. E. (2017). Conflict in Teams. In E. Slalas, R. Rico, & J. Passmore (Eds.), The Wiley Blackwell Handbook of the Psychology of Team Working and Collaborative Processes (pp. 317-343). Malden, MA: Wiley Online Library.

Hackman, R. J. (2011). Collaborative intelligence: Using teams to solve hard problems. San Francisco, CA: Berrett-Koehler.

Jehn, K. A., & Chatman, J. A. (2000). The influence of proportional and percetpuatl conflict composition on team performance. The International Journal of Conflict Management, 11, 56-73. doi:10.1108/eb022835

Kozlowski, S. W. J., & Ilgen, D. R. (2006). Enhancing the effectiveness of work groups and teams. Psychological Science of Work Groups and Teams 7(3), 77-124. doi:10.1111/j.1529-1006.2006.00030.x

Lewis, K. (2003). Measuring transactive memory systems in the field: Scale development and validation. Journal of Applied Psychology, 88(4), 587-604. doi:10.1037/0021-9010.88.4.587

Lim, B.-C., & Klein, K. J. (2006). Team mental models and team performance: A field study of the effects of team mental model similarity and accuracy. Journal of Organizational Behavior, 27(4), 403-418. doi:10.1002/job.387

Marks, M. A., Mathieu, J. E., & Zaccaro, S. J. (2001). A temproally based framework and taxonomy of team processes. The Academy of Management Review, 26(3), 356-376. doi:10.5465/AMR.2001.4845785

Mathieu, J. E., Gallagher, P. T., Domingo, M. A., & Klock, E. A. (2019). Embracing complexity: Reviewing the past decade of team effectiveness research. Annual Review of Organizational Behavior, 6(1), 17-46. doi:10.1143/annrev-orgpsych-012218-015106

Mathieu, J. E., Heffner, T. S., Goodwin, G. F., Cannon-Bowers, J. A., & Salas, E. (2005). Scaling the quality of teammates’ mental models: Equifinality and normative comparisons. Journal of Organizational Behavior, 26(1), 37-56. doi:10.1002/job.296

Mathieu, J. E., Marks, M. A., & Zaccaro, S. J. (2001). Multiteam systems. In N. Anderson, D. S. Ones, H. K. Sinangil, & C. Viswesvarin (Eds.), Handbook of industrial, work and organizational psychology (Vol. 2, pp. 289-313). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.

Mathieu, J. E., Maynard, T. M., Rapp, T., & Gilson, L. (2008). Team effectiveness 1997-2007: A review of recent advancements and a glimpse into the future. Journal of Management, 34, 410-476. doi:10.1177/0149206308316061

Mayer, R. C., Davis, J. H., & Shoorman, D. F. (1995). An integrative model of organizational trust. Academy of Management Review, 20(3), 709-734. doi:10.5465/AMR.1995.9508080335

Rico, R., Sanchez-Manzanares, M., Gil, F., & Gibson, C. (2008). Team implicit coordination processes: A team knowledge-based approach. Academy of Management Review, 33(1), 163-184. doi:10.5465/AMR.2008.27751276

Turner, J. R. (2016). Team cognition conflict: A conceptual review identifying cognition conflict as a new team conflict construct. Performance Improvement Quarterly, 29, 145-167. doi:10.1002/piq.21219

Turner, J. R., Baker, R., Ali, Z., & Thurlow, N. (2020). A new multiteam system (MTS) effectiveness model. Systems, 8(2), 21. https://doi.org/10.3390/systems8020012
https://www.mdpi.com/2079-8954/8/2/12

Weaver, S. J., Feitosa, J., Salas, E., Seddon, R., & Vozenilek, J. A. (2013). The theoretical drivers and models of team performance and effectiveness for patient safety. In E. Salas & K. Frush (Eds.), Improving patient safety through teamwork and team training (pp. 3-26). New York, NY: Oxford University Press.

Yasmi, Y., Schanz, H., & Salim, A. (2006). Manifestation of conflict escalation in natural resource management. Environmental Science & Policy, 9, 538-546. doi:10.1016/j.envsci.2006.04.003

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