Complex projects in an organization comprise an array of activities, tasks, and decisions that require a diverse skill pool for the project to be successfully implemented according to the set goals. In such projects, teams work on specific aspects to ensure that sharing ideas and collective energy makes the process easier, enhancing the pace at which the project is executed. The activities undertaken in complex projects tend to follow a specific pattern, as portrayed in Richard Hackman’s statement. The pattern states that teams may not work effectively in complex projects if they do not augur well with the demand of capabilities and skills required to complete such schemes. Richard Hackman was a scholar who observed teamwork habits in different settings where he identified that complex projects are completed by individuals undertaking specific tasks as teams. The primary purpose of this report is to examine the effectiveness of the observation Hickman recorded concerning teams in organizations and how applicable they are, especially when working on complex projects.
Significance of the Report
The report is significant as it will serve as a control experiment to confirm the truth behind Richard Hackman’s statement on teamwork. It will also be used to outline the various ways in which teamwork influences the success of any project and the various factors that hinder success in teamwork. The dynamics surrounding teamwork will be examined to ensure that effective management of teams working in the project successfully utilize their capabilities in different project tasks to deal with the challenges linked to complex projects.
Review of Main Points
The report will examine and review the work of Richard Hackman and how he arrived at his decision on the various comments he made about teamwork. It will also examine his educational background and how his involvement in different activities enabled him to gather adequate information on the effectiveness of teamwork in complex projects. His approach to teamwork, theory, and its benefits are also discussed to enhance the understanding of his view of organizational teams. Lastly, there are recommendations for creating an enabling environment for teamwork in an organization.
Teams and Teamwork
A team is a group comprising two or more individuals with similar or related skills that enable them to successfully work together on a task or project and attain its objectives. For teams to be successful, all the members must have a similar objective to attain, which gives them direction in which all their activities aim to achieve (Guffey & Loewy, 2014). Therefore, the team members should channel their skills and capabilities into the assigned tasks. The collaboration between the different team members is the primary reason teams succeed or fail (Guffey & Loewy, 2014). Therefore, the team must undertake their tasks effectively and ensure that they attain the set goals of the project within the given time frame.
Hackman and Perception of Teamwork
Hackman is one of the most relevant scholars who addressed the issue of teamwork in organizations and how it influenced the success of the institutions, especially about undertaking complex projects. During his observations on how teams work, he observed that different teams experience unique challenges that make it hard for them to attain their goals (Guffey & Loewy, 2014). Such challenges are difficult to judge until the project is done since only then can the effectiveness of the project be identified. Hackman observed that teamwork brought together individuals with different opinions on how to undertake various tasks making it challenging to address the sensitivity of complex projects. Such projects required significant precision to attain the desired objectives (Larson & DeChurch, 2020). It was also observed that teams were prone to aspects like conflicts, slow decision-making process, and lack of creativity which are critical aspects of organizational development and success.
In addition, complex projects in organizations demand varied skills, capabilities, and experience on the task undertaken, making it challenging to make the team with the desired traits and capabilities, lowering the project implementation process. These factors influenced Hackman to develop a model that he considered perfect for developing effective teamwork and the various guidelines that would make it easy for an organization to develop an effective and fit team that can be used to deal with the challenges linked to teamwork (Kaur & Mittal, 2020). This aspect means that before developing a team, the project managers should ensure that their teams include members with specific strengths that can be used in different aspects of the project for its practical completion. Therefore, complex projects require specialists in different project aspects who would bring together individuals who would solve the challenges linked to their areas and enhance creativity since they are specialized in their area of practice.
Hackman’s Model of Successful Teamwork
After critical observation of the various challenges of teamwork, Hackman developed the five-factor model for developing an effective project team. Hackman’s model was based on the principals reasons associated with successful groups and the several traits that characterized their design and management (Kaur & Mittal, 2020). In the process, he acknowledged that effective groups prioritized the needs of their clients and invested in ways that developed that prepared their competitiveness in the future. The members of the teams were satisfied and found meaning within the groups. Such factors influenced him to develop a five-factor model that he believed increased the chances of teams being successful. The five factors he identified included being a real team where the members shared a task, having a clear direction regarding goals and objectives, enabling structure, supportive context, and expert coaching (Kaur & Mittal, 2020). These factors ensured that the teams developed to have control of some aspects of the various projects they undertook, a framework that entailed complete information about the task, rewards, and an educative system for development.
Conclusion and Recommendations
The information provided about Hackman and his belief in teamwork does not indicate that he was against the concept but rather against the way the teams were developed and managed. Such aspects made him identify the various aspects that made most teams fail in meeting the desired objectives. He questioned how the teams were developed, the underlying goals and objectives, the capacity of the teams, and even the information about the projects, making it complex and challenging for the team to succeed. In addition, he questioned the approach used, which he considered unfavorable. It is due to this reason that he developed a five-factor model to guide organizations in the development of successful teams.
Other factors recommended in developing successful teams are communication, which is key to the success of any project, and skills and experience to enable specialization within the project. In addition, the use of technology to enhance synchronization of the various tasks in complex projects and for easy monitoring and evaluation is also critical since we live in a modern world where the use of tech is inevitable. Lastly, all projects require adequate and quality resources to attain desirable outcomes.
Guffey, M. E., & Loewy, D. (2014). Business communication: Process and product. Cengage Learning.
Kaur, P., & Mittal, A. (2020). Meaningfulness of work and employee engagement: The role of affective commitment. The Open Psychology Journal, 13(1). Web.
Larson, L., & DeChurch, L. A. (2020). Leading teams in the digital age: Four perspectives on technology and what they mean for leading teams. The Leadership Quarterly, 31(1), 101377. Web.