Types of Teams

Problem-solving Teams
The problem-solving teams are concerned with ways of improving quality, efficiency and work environment. They consist of members from the same department. The teams meets for a few hours each week and solve the problems that are emerging in the organization.

Quality circle presents an example of such team. It is concerned with solving problems related to quality, efficiency and safety at work place. Problem solving teams share ideas and offer suggestions. However, they lack authority to make and implement decisions.

Cross-functional Teams
The cross-functional teams or project management team are made up of employees from different work areas. They come together to accomplish a specific project. The membership cuts across departments and functions. Members are experts in various specialties.

Project, committee and task force are example of cross-functional teams.

Cross functional teams are effective to:
  • manage complex projects
  • exchange information
  • develop new ideas and solve problems
  • solve problems
However, these teams take time to build trust and team work. Members need to learn to work with diversity and complexity. Effectiveness of cross-functional team depends on:
  1. Establishment of clear and specific goals and constraints.
  2. Careful selection and development of members.
  3. Equity in rewarding efforts of members.
Virtual Teams
Virtual teams use information technology and computers to tie together physically dispersed members in order to achieve a common goal. Members collaborate on-line through communication links such as:
  • Wide Area Networks (WAN)
  • Video conferencing
  • E-mail, Voice-mail etc.
Virtual teams lack fact-to-face communication. They have limited social interaction. But they overcome time and space constraints. They allow people to work together who are miles apart.

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