Just because you call a bunch of people, a team doesn’t mean that they will practice teamwork. Generally speaking, teams are almost always poorly managed. Most managers will admit that 25% of the team will produce 75% of the results. This is a typical phenomenon in all groups of people and is part of the myth that it is human nature. In reality, it is the result of the way consequences are managed within a group or a tea,.
One of the hurdles faced by the leader is that most research on work teams is misleading and inaccurate. For instance, there is this popular view that balance in the way team members are treated is central to thriving team leadership. Where there are different levels of effort in team accomplishment, this should be reflected in the diverse levels of reinforcement.
When 25% of the team members have created 75% of the results, they will become resentful if they are the winners of equal rewards for the whole team. Therefore, the best performers get penalized instead of receiving positive reinforcement. On the other hand, the low performers are compensated handsomely for their bad contribution.
It is the experienced leader’s job to secure equal efforts from all. If the efforts are not equal, then you should apply the appropriate negative or positive consequences to modify the situation. No matter what happens, the leader should demonstrate awareness over which team members have produced the 80% of the results. It’s vitally important that these people know that the leader recognizes their efforts. In some organizations, this can be difficult because the leader is removed from direct contact with their followers. It is a leadership responsibility to recognize and identify those high-performing team members.
The incompetency to recognize these individuals will cause the extermination of their high performance. Remember that you can’t confidently reinforce a team you can only positively reinforce the behavior of your team members. It is a leadership responsibility to properly ensure that someone knows the reinforcers for each team member and that they are used to identify individual effort.
There is a fascination to try and be efficient by recognizing the whole team as a collective unit. If each individual has not earned specific positive reinforcement, your all-embracing comments can dissent the team members and rigorously damage your credibility.
You can avoid this by being in constant contact with the team members as they move towards goals and milestones. This is when your positive reinforcement can be implemented and not just after the final accomplishment. When you are doing this, you will know more about the growth, and you will be demonstrating your interest and the quality of the team members’ work. The very process of regular contact will provide positive reinforcement for their participation.