The business environment is currently typified by rapid and ongoing change, which causes the future to be increasingly unpredictable and unsettled. Companies are struggling to maintain their competitive edge and to survive. It is therefore important that management should ensure that the necessary competencies and abilities are available to enable the coordination of both diversified and specialised functions within the company. This underlines the importance of effective teamwork in organizations. The purpose of this study is to examine the role of team leadership in the effectiveness of management teams. In order to attain this goal, the primary focus of the literature study was team leadership. Chapter 2 comprehensively discusses the most important aspects determining effective teams and team efficiency in organizations. The analysis of the literature was focused specifically on the general factors determining team efficiency and twenty critical factors were identified. In chapter 3 team leadership is discussed. A comprehensive literature study was done in order to identify the characteristics of an effective team leader, as well as the roles he/she is expected to play in the team. Qualitative analysis of the literature indicated 17 discernable roles which are discussed comprehensively in this chapter. Qualitative as well as quantitative research methodologies were used in order to achieve the objective of this study. Qualitative methodology was used mainly to analyze the available literature. Quantitative research involved a random sample of 19 teams, which were selected from all divisions of the organization. A dual criterion, consisting of an evaluation of the group dynamics in the teams and also of quantifyable team output was used. On the basis of the criterion these teams were divided into nine effective and ten ineffective teams. The team leaders were assessed by means of a 360° questionnaire. The head of the team, team members and the team leaders themselves were required to do the assessment according to five identified dimensions describing team leadership. The effective and ineffective teams were compared using the Mann-Whitney U-test to determine whether any significant differences between the teams exist in terms of the following five dimensions: "management of attention" (dimension 1); "management of meaning and motivation" (dimension 2); "management of trust" (dimension 3); "management of self" (dimension 4) and "management of empowerment" (dimension 5). From the comparison between the effective and ineffective teams the following results were apparent: There is a clear tendency to indicate that in the case of effective teams, when assessing the team leader, the assessment by team members and team leaders coincide. In the case of ineffective teams, leaders tend to rate themselves considerably higher than the team members do. This leads to the conclusion that leaders of effective teams have a realistic view of their ability as team leaders. Significant differences were also discernable in the following dimensions: "management of attention" (dimension 1); "management of trust" (dimension 3); "management of self" (dimension 4) and "management of empowerment" (dimension 5). The most significant differences were found in terms of dimensions 3 and 5. Results indicate that leaders of effective teams have a realistic concept of their ability; that they have the ability to purposefully lead their team members; that they can inspire trust in their team members; that they manage themselves effectively and that they empower their team members in all areas and aspects.
Thesis (MCom (Human Resources Management))--University of Pretoria, 2004.
Shotter, Magdalena(Southern African Institute of Government Auditors, 2000)
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