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Health and Social Care Setting

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  • Word count: 2253
  • Category: Health

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Lead and Manage a Team within Health and Social Care or Children and Young People’s setting.

1 – Understand the features of effective team performance within a health and social care or children and young people’s setting

1. 1 – Explain the features of effective team performance Teamwork is about striving to accomplish a set of common goals and objectives. For teams to be effective they need to have clear shared objectives that contribute to the effectiveness of services for the residents and will need to be aware of their own roles and responsibilities within the team.

These objectives will provide a framework for the team to measure their progress, recognise potential risk and identify opportunities for collaborative working. A group of people working together can achieve things that the individuals cannot achieve on their own. An effective team will interact, share advice, best practice and give constructive criticism and are able to adapt their practice if necessary. Team performance will be much more effective if there is a mutual respect for their line manager as well as each other.

The features of an effective team performance is also supported by positive leadership and the manager should be able to encourage their team to openly discuss any ideas and/or suggestions amongst each other in a calm and professional manner. Bruce Tuckman is a theorist who developed his own team development model which was used to describe teams and their effectiveness. Bruce described teams as having several different phases. He called these phases Forming, storming, norming and performing. Forming: Team members are dependent on the manager for direction.

The individual roles are being formed but are not yet developed. Typical behaviour includes: being positive, polite, anxious and excited to get on with the challenges of the task. Team members treat each other like strangers and begin to establish ground rules. Storming; Team members compete against each other and their leader for positions. Typical behaviour includes being frustrated with leaders and fellow team members. Team members start to communicate, but they do not consider themselves as part of a team. They resist control by managers and can be hostile. Norming

Team members settle down, accept their roles and responsibilities and cooperate with each other. Typical behaviour includes being respectful of the managers’ and colleagues’ strengths and weaknesses. People feel part of a team and support and respect each other’s viewpoints about how to work together. Performing; The team functions well as a unit. Everyone knows their role and purpose, and the manager delegates and overseas tasks and activities. Typical behaviour includes being productive, supportive and efficient. The team works well and relationships are open, trusting and flexible. The hierarchy or rank structure is of little importance.

1. 2 – Identify the challenges experienced by developing teams When teams are newly formed and developing, challenges will be experienced due to the fact that new and different people have come together to form a team. Challenges such as communication and relationship issues can result in developing teams. Some of the challenges that can be experienced by teams that are developing are:

-a lack of diverse skills and interest; if a team consists of people with the same skills and interests, then the objectives of the team will not be achieved

-when a team is developing; communication is a key component and if team members treat their roles as independent ones then communication suffers. Team meetings should be held to discuss the progress of the wing and individuals asked about their ideas/suggestions and their challenges to gauge the level of communication among the team members

-developing teams need leaders to offer a sense of purpose of direction; lack of effective leadership challenges effective team development. Without a strong leader to guide the team and hold individuals accountable, the team may lose morale and motivation

-role confusion; even though a team works together to achieve a common goals, each individual team member needs to know their own specific role within the team otherwise it results in role confusion.

When team members lack an understanding of their roles or choose not to follow through with their roles the team cannot develop as a cohesive and well-functioning unit. By explaining to each team member their roles in detail it will avoid confusion, and monitoring team members to ensure they adhere to their assigned roles.

– When developing a team, conflicts are inevitable and how team member’s deal with conflict is imperative to team development. According to Bruce Tuckman (1977), teams that are developing have to go through a number of stages during their existence. He identified the stages as, forming, storming, norming and performing. Teams may not be aware of these stages and are not conscious of the processes involved, and would therefore experience challenges as the team is developing. An awareness of the stages may help teams to deal with the more challenging aspects of team working.

1. 3 Identify the challenges experienced by established teams

Once the team is in the performing stage and working effectively together they are focused on tasks and overall aims. Disagreements are dealt with openly and constructively and the line manager is able to delegate tasks easily to other members of the team. Challenges experienced within the established team may be that the team might not be able to move through the development stage at the same pace, they may move back and forth between the stages, and if staff members leave and new staff join the team this will impact greatly on the team’s development, resulting in what is known as ‘reforming’.

This means going back to stage 1 and going through the whole process again. All teams need to be able to share ideas, knowledge and best practice and maintain a team identity. Ongoing support, confidence building and improving working relations can assist with challenges experienced by established teams. Dr Belbin argues that a team works best when there is a balance of roles and responsibilities set out within the team and all team members are aware of their own roles and work to their strengths and together actively manage their weaknesses.

1. 4 – Explain how challenges to effective team performance can be overcome Challenges such as team consistency and low morale in staff can be overcome through supervisions and team meetings where staff are encouraged and invited to share their ideas on ways to improve and move forward together. Within the wing that I manage we have a staff communication book which allows myself and staff to document changes to resident’s needs, wishes and reminders to staff, so that if someone has been off for a few days they are then updated by reading the communication book.

Supervision can help overcome staff conflict if there are one or two staff members that disagree and are not working together then one to one supervision can be done with the intent of a mediation meeting for all staff involved in the conflict. Supervision also gives the opportunity to discuss progress, areas that require improvement, discuss areas of concern to the individual and praise their practice.

1. 5 – Analyse how different management styles may influence outcomes of team performance Management theorist Kurt Lewin identified the following management styles:


– This type of manager expects people to do things their way only and insist on having their own way. They do not consult with others and they make decisions based on the needs of the task and not the people. This can be very useful if there is an emergency situation or a situation that needs quick, assertive leadership. However this style can be very demotivating and frustrating to experienced and skilled staff. Democratic

– This type of manager allows other people to be involved in the decision-making process.

They are consultative and value the opinions of others, and they are influenced by what other people want. They are concerned with building relationships with their team members and are keen to encourage team members to discuss ideas and suggestions. This can make for a very engaging and easy-going work environment, although it can be frustrating if the leader is timid about making final decisions. Laissez-faire – This type of manager trusts their team members’ capabilities and are willing to stand back and let the team get on with their tasks.

They have minimal input and involvement. They let the team make the majority of day-to-day decisions and implement the work processes. This can be very motivating for team members, and the leader is able to step back and take an overview of the whole force, moving in to take action only when needed. This style works well with experienced and well-motivated team members, but is not appropriate and will not be effective for unskilled or unmotivated staff.

It helps managers to know their preferred leadership style so that they can adapt the style in certain situations. For example, if a manager is usually laissez-faire, they will let their team get on with the tasks, knowing that the team members will ask for help or guidance if needed. However, if there is an emergency situation they need to become autocratic so that they can call out instructions and take quick control of the situation.

1. 6– Analyse methods of developing and maintaining:

-Trust – Accountability

Trust – this develops from consistent actions that show staff and colleagues that you are reliable, cooperative and committed to team success. A sense of confidence within the workplace allows employees to work together more effectively for a common goal. Remaining honest with employees about positive and negative aspects of the home builds trust and the management are also expected to maintain the same level of trust and honesty with the employees as this sense of integrity allows colleagues and employees to be more trusting of your actions.

Accountability – Managers who actively involve their staff in setting goals and expectations will find that employees understand expectations better and will be more confident that they are able to achieve those expectations and will in turn perform with higher standards. Managers must recognise their staff’s accomplishments and offer support when goals become difficult because by doing so will enable their staff to be innovative and creative and even more committed to their work.

Managers can practice accountability for positive results by following good performance management principles such as; encouraging staff to be involved in setting clear and challenging goals and objectives, supporting staff in all aspects of their job and monitoring their progress, giving feedback and constructive criticism as well as praising staff for god performance which can be done through one-to-one supervision, appraisals or team meetings.

1. 7 – Compare methods of addressing conflict within a team From time to time there are conflicts within a team. And as a wing manager I manage 13 staff members and have had to deal with many different occasions of staff conflict, varying from personality clashes, work performance levels and personal grievances. They can be minor and easily sorted, or they can be complicated, requiring careful handling. Conflict in the workplace can be very damaging and heated exchanges, isolation and failing to communicate can lead to a decrease in motivation, morale and productivity, changes in behaviour and an increase in sickness and absenteeism.

Sources of conflict must be resolved as soon as possible so that they do not escalate and become more serious. According to the Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (Acas), conflict falls into two categories; conflict between individuals and conflict between groups.

Examples of causes of conflict within the team could include o Dissatisfaction with the workload or work slippages – e. g. increased workloads or missed deadlines o Lack of appreciation and perceived unfairness – e. g. someone feeling that they have not received appropriate praise for their efforts o Misunderstandings and poor sharing of information – e. g. concerned discussions and arguments due to not knowing what is happening

o Differences of opinion – this could be between individuals, teams or the organisation as a whole about working methods o People having different objectives such as some wanting to stay and do overtime to finish the task on time whilst others will ‘clock watch’ and want to leave on time o Bullying, harassment or personality clashes between individuals

When managing conflict within a team managers can try various approaches. These may include for example:

-Open communication – between different teams to find an acceptable compromise or between individuals to discuss all options calmly

-Understanding the different personalities of people on the team

-gaining an insight into the cause of the conflict and the best way to manage each individual

-Setting non-conflicting goals – such as splitting tasks so that people are able to finish at their own pace

-Clear explanations of the settings policies and procedures – ensuring that everyone is aware and understands the objectives and instructions

-Being fair and consistent – giving praise to people who deserve it and expecting all team members to work to the same high standards

-Early intervention – e. g. talking to team members as soon as conflict arises or seems likely to occur and to act before the problem escalates. There are established techniques that a team leader can also use to minimise and resolve conflict at work.

These are:

• Win-win or collaborating – for example confronting and solving a problem by working with other people

• Forcing or competing – the manager forces their views on their team members who are arguing to get a quick resolution

• Smoothing or accommodating – the manager soothes everyone and accommodates their views when making decisions

• Compromising –finding a solution that is acceptable to everyone • Withdrawing or avoiding – ignoring or stepping away from the conflict.

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